The 38th SCGA Tournament of Club Champions begins this Monday at the SilverRock Resort in La Quinta (pictured). Club champions are invited to play in this 18-hole event, which is flighted based on Handicap Index. Club champions with a 2.4 Handicap or below will play in the gross division, while club champions with an index higher than that will play in the net divisions on Dec. 10.
Last year, Scott Almquist of Coto de Caza captured the title at Newport Beach CC with a one-stroke victory over Ryan Ogulnick of Woodland Hills in very tough conditions. A new champion will be crowned, however, as Almquist will not return to the field. Highlighting the groups will be Tony Behrstock, who last year advanced to the quarterfinals of the U. S. Mid-Am, 1999 SCGA Amateur Champion John Pate, 2012 SCGA Four Ball Champion Mark Manwaring and 2011 Southern California High School Champion Ben Doyle.
The Arnold Palmer Classic Course at the SilverRock Resort is owned by the City of La Quinta and was home to the Bob Hope Classic from 2008-2011. It is spread out over 200 acres with massive bunkers and stunning water features. The Santa Rosa Mountains provide a scenic backdrop to this difficult par 72 layout.
The winner of this tournament will earn exemptions into the 114th SCGA Amateur Championship at San Diego CC and the 29th SCGA Mid-Amateur Championship at a site still to be determined.
The 5th Annual Senior Tournament of Club Champions will also take place Monday at Bermuda Dunes CC. Senior club champions over the age of 55 and with a Handicap Index of 5.4 or less will be participating. Larry Grant, the defending champion out of El Dorado Park GC, headlines a field that also includes recently crowned Super Senior Champion Ray Vanyo, former champion Rick Doebler, two-time SCGA Senior Player of the Year Howie Knodt and 2007 SCGA Senior Amateur Champion Rich Tolly.
The course opened in 1959 and was designed by world-renowned designer Billy Bell. It has the unique distinction of having hosted the PGA tour event, The Bob Hope Classic, for 49 years. The "Classic" style course has been played by celebrities and professionals from around the world including the likes of Clark Gable and Arnold Palmer, who both lived in the Bermuda Dunes community at one time.
The winner of this tournament will earn an exemption into the 2013 SCGA Senior Amateur Championship at Virginia CC.