By Paul Gueorgieff,
editor Golfer Pacific
Planning a golf holiday for 2016?
Not sure where to go, which events to take in?
Then consider the following list we have compiled that might provide some ideas.
Two of the more obvious events are the men’s and women’s New Zealand Opens.
The first of them is the women’s event, which is headlined by the confirmed presence of New Zealand superstar Lydia Ko.
The open, sponsored by ISPS Handa, is to be played at Clearwater Golf Club in Christchurch. It’s a three-day tournament from February 11-14. This is one of the great opportunities to see one of world’s greatest golfers, maybe the best woman golfer ever. You could top it off with a few days golfing in Queenstown, including a round at the remarkable Jack’s Point.
The men’s New Zealand Open, sponsored by BMW and carrying a $1 million purse, is from March 10-13. The field for the first two days will be split between The Hills course and Millbrook Resort in Queenstown. The final two days will be at The Hills. There will be a host of New Zealanders to following including Ryan Fox who really made a name for himself in 2015. Once again you could tag on some more golf for yourself in Queenstown.
Staying with the New Zealand scene, there is also the Holden NZ PGA Championship at the Remeura Golf Club in Auckland from March 5-8. Many of New Zealand’s top golfers will be there. Reminder, its free entry for kids.
The highlight, in my book, for 2016 will be the Olympics at Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. Golf will be part of the programme for the first time in 112 years. New Zealand will be represented in both the women’s and men’s divisions.
Once again this will be another great opportunity to see Ms Ko in action. She is a genuine chance to win gold for New Zealand and, perhaps, fly a new New Zealand flag.
Danny Lee will represent New Zealand in the men’s division at Rio and at this stage it’s a close call to who will be the other, although Fox is the probable. This is a great opportunity to see Lee in action.
The men’s competition is from August 11-14 and the women’s from August 18-21. Ring these dates on your calendar.
Another obvious for golf fans is one of the four majors — The Masters, the US Open, The (British) Open and the US PGA Championship.
The Masters is in April, the US Open in June while The Open and US PGA are both in July. This year’s British Open, golf’s oldest tournament, is at Royal Troon in Scotland, so don’t bank of summery weather. Once again let’s hope Lee, Fox or any other New Zealand golfer can play in any of these events and make a good showing.
There are five majors in women’s golf. These have greater interest for us more than usual because of Ms Ko.
Three of the five majors are in the United States but the other two are probably hold more attraction for Kiwis. They are the British Open in England in July and the Evian Championship in France in September. Lydia won last year’s Evian to become the youngest women to win a golf major at the age of 18. It would nice to be on hand to see her defend her title at the ripe old age of 19.
Your 2016 golfing calendar
Ladies European Tour: New Zealand Women’s Open
Clearwater Golf Club, Christchuch.
LPGA Tour: ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open
Australasian Golf Tour: NZ PGA Championship
Remeura Golf Club, Auckland.
Australasian Golf Tour: New Zealand Open
The Hills and Millbrook Resort, Queenstown.
Mar. 31-Apr. 3
LPGA Tour: ANA Inspiration
Rancho Mirage, California.
PGA Tour: Masters Tournament
Augusta National Golf Club
PGA of America/LPGA Tour: KPMG Women's PGA Championship
Sahalee Country Club
PGA Tour: US Open
Oakmont Country Club
LPGA Tour: US Women’s Open
European Tour: Open Championship
Royal Troon Golf Club
PGA of America: PGA Championship
Baltusrol Golf Club (Lower Course)
Springfield, New Jersey
LPGA Tour: Ricoh Women’s British Open
Milton Keynes, England
Olympics: Men's Golf Competition
Olympic Golf Course
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Olympics: Women's Golf Competition
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
LPGA Tour: Evian Championship
Evian Les Bains, France
September 30-October 2
Hazeltine National Golf Club