People vs. the Pros announces multi-year deal to continue

March 29, 2007
PGA TOUR staff

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- People vs. the Pros, a unique tournament that features amateur golfers competing head-to-head against professionals from the PGA TOUR and Champions Tour, will continue its four-year run on ESPN as a multi-year deal was announced Thursday by PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem.

The participants and site date of this year's event will be announced in the near future.

"We are pleased to add the People vs. the Pros to our Challenge Event schedule," said PGA TOUR Commissioner Tim Finchem. "It is a format that the players have enjoyed competing in over the past four years, and we look forward to seeing PGA TOUR and Champions Tour players competing in the years to come."

"We have enjoyed developing the People vs. the Pros series over the last four years and our thanks go to the PGA TOUR for rewarding our event by making it part of the Challenge Event schedule," said Andy Batkin, CEO of the Manhattan Beach, Calif.-based Innovative Media Solutions, creators of People vs. the Pros. "To have our unique event sanctioned by the TOUR validates our vision to provide a fully integrated media and marketing platform for our sponsors."

The first People vs. the Pros tournament was held in 2003 at Lake Las Vegas Resort in Las Vegas, Nev. John Daly defeated his amateur opponent, but golf legend Lee Trevino was defeated by his amateur opponent, validating the concept.

The 2004 event was held at historic Pinehurst Resort & Spa in Pinehurst, N.C. Daly defended his title and the colorful Gary McCord was the Champions Tour player. The final matches were played on the legendary No. 2 course at Pinehurst, site of the 1999 and 2005 U.S. Opens. Daly and McCord were both defeated by their amateur opponents.

The 2005 event was held at Barton Creek Resort and Spa in Austin, Texas. Justin Leonard was the PGA TOUR pro, while Ben Crenshaw represented the Champions Tour. The final matches were held on the Tom Fazio-designed Foothills Course. Leonard won his match 4 and 3, while Crenshaw was taken all the way to the 18th hole, prevailing 1 up.

Last year's event returned to Pinehurst's No. 2 course, where two-time U.S. Open champion Retief Goosen, the world's third-ranked player, and McCord, in his second appearance in the event, both won their matches.

The format for People vs. the Pros features more than 200 amateur players competing over three days in a 54-hole stroke-play competition utilizing handicaps. The players are divided into two divisions: 49-and-under and the over-50 division, with each division producing a champion.

On the fourth day of the tournament, the amateur champions play an 18-hole match against the professionals representing the PGA TOUR and the Champions Tour. The matches are taped for telecast later on ESPN. The winners each receive $50,000 designated to the charity of their choice.

The event is open to U.S. and Canadian amateur golfers over 18 years of age with an established handicap; players can reserve a place in the tournament on the tournament website,

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