Tiger Plays Host to Some of Golf's Young Stars at the Chevron World Challenge
December 15, 2008
Villegas, Kim and Mahan set to compete for the $5.75 million purse at Sherwood Country Club Dec. 17-21
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. (Dec. 10, 2008) - There's a new wave of superstars hitting the fairways and the greens of Sherwood Country Club next week in the Chevron World Challenge presented by Bank of America. They are a trio of twenty-somethings - Anthony Kim, Camilo Villegas and Hunter Mahan - and their mission is not just how to earn their share of the $5.75 million in prize money on the line in the prestigious season-ending tournament, but also how to stake an early claim as three of the top players to beat in 2009.
There is much at stake in the Chevron World Challenge, the last PGA TOUR co-sponsored competition of 2008, and it's all in the presence of tournament host Tiger Woods, a four-time winner of the tournament that benefits his Tiger Woods Foundation. Because Woods is recovering from reconstructive knee surgery and unable to play, chances are that a large percentage of the spotlights will be shined in the directions of Kim, Villegas and Mahan, to see whether they can add on to the success stories they wrote this year.
The scene is a classic, the 7,027-yard Sherwood Country Club, a difficult-to-navigate Jack Nicklaus-designed course that will test 16 of the world's greatest players in a 72-hole stroke play format, Dec. 17-21.
The Youth Movement' is sure to draw a great deal of attention. That's something with which Kim is completely familiar. At 23, the Los Angeles native began the year ranked 75th and ends it ranked a career-best 9th in the Official World Golf Rankings. He won twice, and on difficult tracks at the Wachovia at Quail Hollow and the AT&T National at Congressional, along the way carving out a reputation as a player who excels at taming hard-to-break courses. Kim, who also tied for 26th at the U.S. Open and tied for seventh at the British Open, collected eight top 10s in 22 PGA TOUR events, won $4.65 million, finished fourth in scoring average and ranked among the top putters on the TOUR.
Villegas, only 26, vaporized the rankings just like Kim, jumping from 56th at the end of 2007 all the way to a personal best of 7th. Consistency is the key for the putting whiz from Columbia, who made 19 cuts in 22 PGA TOUR events and won both the BMW Championship and the Tour Championship, earning a career-high $4.42 million. Not only did Villegas prove to be one of the most clutch putters on the PGA TOUR, he also showed he knows how to get the ball in the hole quickly, compiling the fifth-best scoring average on the PGA TOUR.
Mahan, 26, is a Californian like Kim, and from Orange. Held in esteem as one of the best iron players on the PGA TOUR - Mahan ranked 7th in greens in regulation - he also showed an ability to come up big in the clutch. With 13 top 25s, Mahan wound up as a Ryder Cup captain's pick and emerged at Valhalla as an integral part of the victorious U.S. team that also prominently featured Kim.
Vijay Singh headlines the field in Woods' 10th annual tournament at the breathtaking venue of Sherwood Country Club in a talented group that also includes such superstars as Jim Furyk, Fred Couples, Paul Casey, Boo Weekley, K.J. Choi, Kenny Perry, Justin Leonard, Mike Weir, Luke Donald, Stephen Ames and Ben Curtis.
The exciting week of golf begins with a pro-am Wednesday, followed by four rounds of stroke play golf featuring Kim, Villegas and Mahan - three youngsters you can't take your eyes off of - and the veterans that demand attention on their own.
Tiger Woods Foundation
Since its inception in 1996 by Tiger Woods and his father Earl, the Tiger Woods Foundation has reached an estimated 10 million young people through character development, career exploration and grant making programs. Programs developed and supported by the Tiger Woods Foundation all share a similar mission of empowering young people to dream big and to set specific goals to achieve their dreams.
Launched in February, 2006, the Tiger Woods Learning Center is an innovative 14-acre, after school campus designed to inspire career exploration. Serving members in grades 5 through 12, classes include forensic science, robotics, engineering, aerospace, video production and marine biology. Tiger's Action Plan-based on Earl Woods' best-selling book, Start Something-is a free program for youth 8-17 that addresses three priorities: character education, volunteer service and career exploration. Through participation in TAP, youth define a specific personal goal and develop an action plan to achieve it while giving back to their community and exploring careers that fit within their areas of interest. More information on the Tiger Woods Foundation and its programs can be found at www.tigerwoodsfoundation.org.
Chevron Corporation is one of the worlds leading integrated energy companies, with subsidiaries that conduct business across the globe. The company's success is driven by the ingenuity and commitment of approximately 59,000 employees who operate across the energy spectrum. Chevron explores for, produces and transports crude oil and natural gas; refines, markets and distributes transportation fuels and other energy products and services; manufactures and sells petrochemical products; generates power and produces geothermal energy; and develops and commercializes the energy resources of the future, including biofuels and other renewables. Chevron is based in San Ramon, Calif. More information on Chevron is available at www.chevron.com.
Bank of America
Bank of America is one of the world's largest financial institutions, serving individual consumers, small and middle market businesses and large corporations with a full range of banking, investing, asset management and other financial and risk-management products and services. The company provides unmatched convenience in the United States, serving more than 59 million consumer and small business relationships with more than 6,100 retail banking offices, more than 18,000 ATMs and award-winning online banking with more than 25 million active users. Bank of America offers industry leading support to more than 4 million small business owners through a suite of innovative, easy-to-use online products and services. The company serves clients in more than 150 countries and has relationships with 99 percent of the U.S. Fortune 500 companies and 83 percent of the Fortune Global 500. Bank of America Corporation stock (NYSE: BAC) is a component of the Dow Jones Industrial Average and is listed on the New York Stock Exchange. Visit www.bankofamerica.com for more information.