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Justin Rose is named the 2021 recipient of the Payne Stewart Award

Justin Rose, the englishman golfer who is a 11-time PGA winner, as well as the 2013 U.S. Open winner and 2016 Olympic gold medalist in Rio, was named the 2021 recipient of the Payne Stewart Award, which is presented annually by the PGA Tour to the golfer who best exemplifies character, charity and sportsmanship.

Stewart, a three-time major champion, perished in a 1999 plane crash as the reigning U.S. Open champion. A year after that fatal date, the PGA created this award to honor his name and character.
Rose, turned professional in ’98, a year before Payne died, and was able to have a few brief interactions with Payne long before Rose held a trophy in his honor. The 2021 recipient definitely remembers the kind words that Steward had with him at The Open Championship in ’98, when Rose was just hitting balls on the range and Payne stopped by to compliment his swing: “Oh, that’s how it’s done.”

The Payne Stewart Award is specially meaninful because it goes beyond the golfing skills, but instead this prize recognizes the characteristics that define a great role model for the rest of the world, without any descriminations.
Some of the most recognizable players have won this Award in the past as well, such as Ernie Els (2015), Gary Player (2006), Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer both in (2000).
It is a chance for the recipient to bring the world matters back to the spotlight and to create awarness through their actions or foundations. Justin Rose and his wife founded The Kate & Justin Rose Foundation in Florida, which helps members of the community with lack of sources and money to fulfill their plates and to enrich their minds, raising more than $3 million and providing “500,000 hunger-free weekends” and 300,000 books.

“Justin Rose embodies everything the Payne Stewart Award represents,” PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said. “Like Payne, he has been one of the premier players of his generation while using his platform to better the lives of those around him.”

European Tour

Wiesberger and Perez eyeing Ryder Cup run at Cazoo Classic

Tournament Preview

Bernd Wiesberger and Victor Perez will tee it up in this week’s Cazoo Classic at London Golf Club, both harbouring hopes of staking a late claim to secure a place on Pádraig Harrington’s European Ryder Cup team.

Both players are well and truly in the mix as the race for qualification concludes at the end of next month’s BMW PGA Championship, before Team Europe journeys to Whistling Straits in Wisconsin two weeks later in an attempt to retain the famous trophy they lifted in Paris three years ago.

Austrian Wiesberger currently lies in seventh position on the European Points List, helped by an eighth European Tour victory earlier this year at Made in HimmerLand presented by FREJA, while Frenchman Perez sits just outside the cut-off mark on the World Points List behind Irishman Shane Lowry.

Wiesberger has enjoyed a three-week break since making the cut at The Open and returns to Kent feeling fresh and ready for the challenge. Perez, meanwhile, played last week’s WGC-FedEx St Jude Invitational in Memphis and is now targeting a return to the kind of form which earned him a fourth place finish in March’s WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.

Andy Sullivan is a man who has already experienced the Ryder Cup, having played in 2016, and the Englishman’s most recent European Tour win came almost exactly a year ago on home soil, so he will be hoping to feed off the memories of his 2020 English Championship triumph this week.

Player Quotes

Bernd Wiesberger: “I have not played a massive amount of golf in my time off to be honest, that’s why I’m feeling nice and fresh and enjoy hitting a few balls. I played 18 holes today for the second time since Sunday at The Open.

“So they were short golfing days for me back at home, but I’ve been up to all sorts of things, tried three weeks off tournament golf, but it’s time to switch on again and get a few good weeks going this week at London Golf Club.

“I’m not the youngest anymore so I need to conserve my energy and I feel good. I had a lovely time yesterday with Titleist up at the new facility at Woburn and got everything nicely dialled in and played 18 practice holes because it’s my first time at London Golf Club.

“The course looks like, I feel like it’s really a golf course that suits my game and that’s always good, to come to a place that does that. I feel fresh, eager to get going again and I’m looking forward to the week.

“Well there’s really only one target for me over the next four events I’m playing, four of the next five. After that fourth week there is a big cut-off so that’s the big target and just try and enjoy these four weeks and free up for them, give everything in those events and try get the best outcome possible. We’ll see if we reach that goal.”

Victor Perez: “Obviously I didn’t have the best of weeks last week, I felt like some parts of the game worked for me and some parts of the games were poor and it’s just a case of putting it all together. There were some good stretches which has been the case for a long time in the last five or six months where it’s been good for a little bit, bad for little bit and not consistent enough.

“So it’s just a matter of putting it all together. The course looks great and I’m excited for the week. It’s part of the game where you look and think a 67 should be a 72 and it works both ways so you just have to be grateful for the times it works and be patient for the times when it doesn’t work.

“Sometimes you shoot 71 and you feel like you’re so close to a 68 and getting the rounds going and equally sometimes you shoot 67 and you get away withy a lot, so it’s a matter of perspective really.

“It’s a big puzzle and it’s just a matter of figuring it out, the right balance oif it all. Sometimes it works and you don’t know why and you keep risding that wave. Then something gets a little off and it’s just a matter of putting the pieces together where you’re comfortable enough to just play. It’s always so easy when it works and equally it can be very difficult.

“It can happen so quickly, you get off to a great week. You get a win and then all of a sudden you’re straight back into the conversation so with the double points and the way it’s turning out to be, it’s going to come all the way down to the final week at Wentworth – being a Rolex Series event with double points. I think at the end of the day it’s just all about playing well, giving yourself chances and hitting good shots.”

Andy Sullivan: “I feel like the game is good, I’ve been playing nicely without doing anything special, just not being getting up and down around the greens enough in honesty.

“I’ve been going along nicely, not getting up and down and you come back a couple of shots or a shot and it just completely zaps all momentum in the round so I’ve been doing a bit of work the last couple of weeks on that, trying to get that tighter, but the game feels in good shape.

“I’m loving the greens this week, the greens are really quick which is a lot more down my alley so without having too much form coming in here I’m actually feeling quite confident my game.

“We’re all out here to be competitive, aren’t we, and when you’re not it is frustrating and there’s no hiding that. I’m not going to stand here and say I’m really happy I finished 50th the last two weeks because I’m not. I’m fuming with it, it’s not nice, so in all honesty finishing 50th the last two weeks is massively frustrating and I want to be at the top end of the leaderboard. It’s not nice going into Sunday’s and not really got much to play for so try and rectify that this week and make sure the short game is tight.”

Press Release by the European Communication Team

PGA Tour

Niall Horan confirmed for BMW PGA Championship Pro-Am

Press Release

Niall Horan, who rose to global fame during his time as a member of boyband One Direction, is the first in a series of A-list celebrities to be confirmed for this year’s BMW PGA Championship Celebrity Pro-Am, taking place at the prestigious Wentworth Club on Wednesday, September 8.

The Irishman, who has since become a successful solo artist with his band, The Slow Hands, is no stranger to the star-studded Celebrity Pro-Am, the traditional curtain-raiser to the BMW PGA Championship, the European Tour’s third Rolex Series event of the 2021 Race to Dubai.

As a member of Wentworth Club, the 27-year-old is familiar with the challenging West Course. However, the hugely popular event attracts a considerable crowd and performing in front of thousands of fans on the golf course is very different to performing up on stage.

Horan, who plays off a handicap of nine, said: “I’ve sung in front of thousands of people; performed concerts all around the world, but when you hear your name called out on the first tee at Wentworth, and you step out in front of that crowd onto the tee box…it’s nerve wracking! We’ve done okay over the years though – I think we’ve won it twice – and it’s pretty cool getting to play with the pros. 

Niall Horan also states,

“It’s a proper family day out and a great atmosphere before the actual tournament and serious stuff kicks off. The celebrity turn out is amazing. You have all sorts of actors, singers, sports stars and TV personalities. I just love it. It’s my home club and it’s always a great day.”

The tournament itself gets underway on Thursday September 9, when Tyrrell Hatton will return to defend his BMW PGA Championship title. The Ryder Cup star leads a host of home hopefuls aiming to make it three English victories in a row at the Rolex Series event.

Hatton will be joined by fellow Ryder Cup stars Tommy Fleetwood, Ian Poulter and Justin Rose, as well as the 2020 Race to Dubai Champion Lee Westwood.

The 2019 BMW PGA Championship winner and 2016 Masters Tournament champion Danny Willett will also tee it up at the Surrey venue, as will World Number 22 Matt Fitzpatrick and four-time European Tour winner Matt Wallace.

They will all be hoping to impress in front of the home crowd at Wentworth Club, which will host some of the biggest stars of world golf in the final qualifying event for the European Ryder Cup team. Pádraig Harrington and his team will attempt to retain the famous trophy against the United States two weeks later at Whistling Straits, in Wisconsin.

Kit Gartrell, Championship Director of the BMW PGA Championship, said: “The BMW PGA Celebrity Pro-Am has become a real highlight of the week, offering fans the chance to see some of world golf’s biggest names tee it up alongside stars of the stage, screen and sport. The players receive a wonderful reception from the huge crowds that come to watch. It promises to be another fantastic day.

“With live concerts returning as well, there will be a real festival atmosphere to this year’s BMW PGA Championship. Rock trio Feeder will be performing on the Saturday, and then Global hitmakers Clean Bandit will headline on the Slingsby Show Stage on the Sunday.

“We cannot wait to welcome everyone back to Wentworth to enjoy five days of world-class golf and entertainment in a relaxed and fun environment.”

Tickets for the BMW PGA Celebrity Pro-Am Day start at £25 for adults (complimentary tickets for children aged 13 and under). Prices for the BMW PGA Championship start at £15 for Tuesday’s practice round. Concessions are available for OAPs and students.

Interview transcript by European Tour Communications

European Tour Satellite Tours

Niall Horan: “We want change.. and having everyone here this week, men, women, disability..that’s what it’s about really..”

ISPS HANDA WORLD INVITATIONAL: Galgorm Castle & Massereene Golf Club

Q. So you’ve got European Tour, LET, LPGA, EDGA. How proud are you to have that and to be part of it?

NIALL HORAN: When you list off the names of governing bodies, we’re doing all right. It’s a nice little the way it sort of turned in the last 18 months from just a Challenge Tour event to now having all of those listed is pretty cool. It’s pretty — it’s an amazing feeling actually, yeah.

Q. You’re very much changing the dynamics. It’s all about inclusivity. You’re very dynamic in that world. What does it mean to be bringing more and more people into the game that you love?

NIALL HORAN: Yeah, I think it’s got obviously a perception of maybe not being the most inclusive sport, but that’s what we want to change, the perception, and having everyone here this week, men, women, disability, we’ve got everything here, and that’s what it’s all about really. If I can move the needle a couple of percent I’ll always try and do it.

Q. I’ve seen you at the Ryder Cups, and I’ve seen you at the Open with the men and they’re booming it. What have you learned from ladies when they play because they’ve got some fine skills, haven’t they. They play a little bit differently but they’ve got great skills.

NIALL HORAN: Oh, yeah. Some of the — I’ve noticed a lot smoother swings on the ladies tour, and obviously the putting is exceptional. They don’t need to bomb it like Bryson every time, but they’ve got the — drive for show and putt for dough, and the girls have got some amazing putters out there.

Q. There’s one little girl that we saw last night that we’re going to meet again. Talk about how special that is.

NIALL HORAN: Yeah, meeting Amy was brilliant. She was just a bundle of joy is the phrase you’d use. The fact that she’s — we’ve flown her over from America, and she seems to be having a great time — I just seen her poking her head out there somewhere a few minutes ago, and I think she’s going to make an appearance on the back nine maybe to play a few holes with us.

But yeah, she’s just superstar, and the whole — when she went viral the first time, it was outside of golf. She kind of broke the barrier of just a golf story. It was a real sporting moment. Hopefully we can make more memories for her this week.

Interview transcript by

Senior Tours

Legends Tour launches Celebrity Series

The Legends Tour today launched the innovative Celebrity Series and confirmed its first five Celebrity Ambassadors, who will be joined by other stars of sport and screen to compete for a spot in the Grand Final, which will take place in the Indian Ocean at the end of the year.

There will be four Celebrity Series qualifying events in 2021, taking place in the days prior to tournaments on the Legends Tour International Schedule, culminating in the Celebrity Series Grand Final in the Indian Ocean.

Harry Redknapp, Georgie Bingham, Glen Johnson, Sir AP McCoy and Dan Walker, all highly-respected figures in their chosen fields, have signed up to be Celebrity Ambassadors and will be the face of Celebrity Series.

The Celebrity Series events will take place prior to the Staysure PGA Seniors Championship at Formby Golf Club, the Irish Legends presented by the McGinley Foundation at Rosapenna Golf Club, the Senior Scottish Open hosted by Paul Lawrie at Royal Aberdeen, and at an additional European venue to be announced.

The Series finale will take place in the Indian Ocean at the end of the year, where the five ambassadors will be joined by the five highest-ranked celebrities on the Order of Merit.

Sir AP McCoy, the 20-time Champion jump jockey, winner of two Cheltenham Gold Cups, the Grand National and BBC Sports Personality of the Year, will play in Celebrity Series events at Formby Golf Club and at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club.

He said: “I think the new Legends Tour events will be brilliant, not only for the pros playing but for people like myself who want to try and do something competitive on an Order of Merit.

“I think it’ll help the game of golf but I also think it will help those who rarely have the opportunity to be involved in sport. I think it will be great for former sportspeople like myself to keep competitive.”

Harry Redknapp, FA Cup winning manager, ex-footballer and TV personality, said: “I had a great day playing at Wentworth at the launch of the Legends Tour and I really am delighted to be signed up as a Celebrity Ambassador.

“I played in lots of Pro-Ams now and it’s nerve-wracking. When you stand on that first tee and you get an audience there and you’re playing with a professional golfer, you’re out of your comfort zone. When you hit a good shot or you sink a good putt, it’s so satisfying. The buzz you get is amazing.”

Dan Walker, journalist and TV presenter, said: “I love golf and when the opportunity to compete in the Legends Tour Celebrity Series arose, I knew I had to go for it.

“I have been fortunate enough to play alongside some of the world’s best players in Pro-Ams over the years but this is something really special.

“I grew up watching the likes of Woosie win the Masters and so many Legends Tour players competing in Ryder Cups and I am delighted to now have the chance to spend some time with them in the Legends Tour Celebrity Series.”

Georgie Bingham, the TV and radio presenter best-known for hosting shows on talkSPORT, ESPN and Sky, said: “I am over the moon to have been asked to be a Celebrity Ambassador for the Legends Tour and I can’t wait to get out on the course.

“I have been lucky enough to play in many Pro-Ams and I can honestly say they are so much fun. Being able to play golf with Legends of the game is so appealing and I am sure the Celebrity Series will be a great success.”

Glen Johnson, ex-Liverpool and England international footballer, Premier League winner with Chelsea and FA Cup winner with Portsmouth, will play in three of the four Celebrity Series events, said: “After retiring from professional football, golf became my sporting passion and being involved with the Legends Tour is a dream come true.

“It is a great initiative by the Legends Tour to launch this series and I am sure it will be hugely popular and will attract more people to the sport.

“It will be amazing to tee it up with my fellow Celebrity Ambassadors and the pros on the Legends Tour, many of whom I have watched on TV over the years winning Majors and Ryder Cups.”

Ryan Howsam, CEO of the Legends Tour, said: “When I took over as CEO of the Legends Tour, launching a Celebrity Pro-Am Series was something I was really eager to do and therefore today is a very proud day.

“Bringing together the Legends of golf with some of the biggest celebrity names is a winning combination and I’m excited to see these guys tee it up throughout the year. I have admired all five ambassadors for a number of years as they have excelled in their respective fields and it is wonderful to welcome them to the Legends Tour.”

(Text: European Tour Communications)

PGA Tour

PGA Tour: Rapper Macklemore on the upcoming AT&T PEBBLE BEACH PRO-AM

Read the Press Conference transcript below:

JACK RYAN (HOST): We would like to welcome Grammy Award winning rapper and song writer Macklemore at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am. Macklemore, thank you for joining us.

First off, could you just recap your experience playing in the pro-am last year at this tournament.

MACKLEMORE: It was incredible. It was a phenomenal experience, bucket list, completely terrifying. I had no idea how to hit an iron all of a sudden. Shooting in the high 80s at home with some mild cheating with friends. Get down here, can’t improve your lie, you got to play it how it lands, man. That’s just a whole different sport. All of a sudden I’m coming over the top. I’m slicing the ball. Jason Day’s trying to give me lessons on how to come from the inside. I don’t even speak that language. It was crazy. But it was literally Disneyland for a golfer like myself. I felt like I was a child and this was the oasis and that’s exactly how it feels this year.

JACK RYAN: So we won’t have that pro-am format this year, obviously, but you’ll be playing in tomorrow’s AT&T Every Shot Counts Charity Challenge alongside a number of other celebrities. How much are you looking forward to that in light of the tournament format change this year.

MACKLEMORE: I’m excited. Last year I think I was on TV three or four times. Every shot counting and being televised is slightly nerve wracking. But we’re playing for some great causes and that’s what it’s all about, so we’re going to have fun. A great group of celebrities to be out there with, some really good golfers. I’m not putting myself even close to that category and we’re just going to have fun.

JACK RYAN: Last question before we open it up to media. Could you provide us with a little bit of background on your history in the sport? We understand you’ve only started playing relatively recently.

MACKLEMORE: Yeah, I’ve been playing for just over two years now and randomly played one day after Thanksgiving in 2018 and hit a 5-iron out of the sand and I hit it pure and I have been very addicted ever since. I just want that feeling. I play as much as I possibly can, which with two kids is not that often, but that often is at least two to three times a week. So I’ll take it.

JACK RYAN: We’ll take our first question here.

Q. Just curious, what do you like most about it and what has caused you to get addicted?

MACKLEMORE: I love that feeling of hitting a great shot. I love hitting a green in regular, piping a drive. I love even just the ups and downs, the humility that the game brings, the swing of emotion, the mental fortitude that it takes, the patience, the spiritual practice of accepting whatever you just did and letting it go, the exercise, the camaraderie. I truly love everything about the sport.

Q. Did you have — how much experience with golf or exposure did you have before that round after Thanksgiving that you talked about?

MACKLEMORE: After Thanksgiving?

Q. How much had you been around the game before that?

MACKLEMORE: When Tiger — I think when I was in about 8th grade and Tiger was, I don’t know, it was ’97, ’98 or whatever it was and Tiger was having his moment, as a sports fan I was absolutely paying attention to what Tiger was doing. But that was really about it. But I always really liked the old school golf fashion. That was something that I always really respected. Besides that, I didn’t really follow the sport at all. Every once in a while we would like go to a pitch-and-putt and I would hit a couple cars and we would go home, but besides that very limited.

Q. What do you tell people who might not be into golf of that appeal that you found? Do you turn other people onto the game? How do you do that?

MACKLEMORE: I think that the game is amazing. It’s not one of those sports that you can just pick up right away. It takes a little bit before you get that first dopamine hit of a great shot. But I think that in general we need more people playing this sport. We need more accessibility. We need to really just open up the floodgates of kind of the old guard of what golf is and the exclusivity and make sure that all people can play, that courses are affordable, that equipment is readily available to those that need it, and we get youth out there enjoying this amazing sport.

JACK RYAN: One last one before we let you go. You mentioned you are into the golf fashion. Is there anything we can expect from you tomorrow in the Every Shot Counts Charity Challenge? You got something special planned for that?

MACKLEMORE: You know, I don’t normally lay my clothes out before I get dressed. I don’t normally put them out the night before. But tomorrow I’ll wake up to a freshly pressed outfit laid out in front of me that I will do tonight. The reveal will be tomorrow.

JACK RYAN: Perfect. We look forward to seeing that and thank you for joining us today and best of luck tomorrow.

MACKLEMORE: Thanks, man, appreciate it.