Big Break Returns for 12th Season at Walt Disney World Resort

By Golf Channel Public RelationsAugust 19, 2009, 4:00 pm
ORLANDO, Fla. -- GOLF CHANNELs popular Big Break series returns for a 12th season to a magical setting that will make one contestants dream of playing on the PGA TOUR come true.
 
Premiering Oct. 13 at 10 p.m. ET, Big Break Disney Golf will showcase a field of 12 males; collectively the most talented cast in series history, but individually at different stages in their careers battling for the opportunity to fulfill the desire to play professional golf at the highest level. Competitors range from an Olympic gold medalist to several with famed bloodlines to those merely chasing a dream.
 
Shot mainly at both the Magnolia and Palm Courses at Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Fla., the winner of the 10-week series will receive an exemption to compete in the 2010 Childrens Miracle Network Classic. The series marks the first time that a Big Break winner will compete in a TOUR event on the same course in which the series was filmed.
 
In addition, the winner will earn cash and prizes with a potential value of more than $50,000 that includes entry fees paid to compete in the 2010 PGA TOUR Qualifying Tournament from SkyCaddie, a $10,000 shopping spree at Dicks Sporting Goods, free golf for a year courtesy of GolfNow.com, and an endorsement contract from Adams Golf including $10,000 cash.
 
To earn the exemption and prizes, the champion will have to defeat highly skilled golfers in a variety of challenges that test their physical skills and mental toughness.
 
Utilizing the unique venue, Big Break Disney Golfs challenges also will take place at various locations throughout the Walt Disney World Resort, including Main Street U.S.A., Disneys Wide World of Sports Complex and the Walt Disney World Speedway. Intertwined into several episodes will be cameos by PGA TOUR players and memorable moments from the Childrens Miracle Network Classic.
 
The contestants are:
 
Andrew Giuliani (New York, N.Y.) ' Son of former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and Donna Hanover, Andrew is looking to make a name for himself in the game of golf.
 
Ed Moses (Hollywood, Calif.) ' A gold and silver medal winner as a member of the United States swim team at the 2000 Sydney Olympic Games, Moses goal is now the PGA TOUR. A member at Bay Hill Club and Lodge in Orlando, Fla., he once shot 64 on the course that hosts the TOURs Arnold Palmer Invitational.
 
Andreas Huber (Scottsdale, Ariz.) ' Actress Susan Luccis son, the former Wall Street broker left the color of money to seek his fortune on the green.
 
Gipper Finau (Lehl, Utah) ' Joins Tony as the first brother duo to play in the same Big Break series. Blessed with the long ball, Gipper, who turned professional at 16, once drove a 520-yard par 5.
 
Tony Finau (Lehl, Utah) ' Hits the tee ball longer than his brother ' or at least that is what he says in the spirit of sibling rivalry. Finau turned professional when he was 17 and made a cut on the PGA TOUR the same year.
 
Mike Perez (Scottsdale, Ariz.) ' After playing the Nationwide Tour, Perez is looking for the chance to join brother Pat on the PGA TOUR.
 
Vincent Johnson (Portland, Ore.) ' Received the Charlie Sifford exemption to play in the 2009 Northern Trust Open where he flirted with making the cut in his first PGA TOUR start.
 
J.R. Reyes (Omaha, Neb.) ' With tattoos covering each arm, Reyes is not your typical golfer. While not looking the part, he has the talent to fit in on the PGA TOUR.
 
Kevin Erdman (Arcadia, Calif.) ' Husband of Big Break Kaanapali alum Courtney Erdman, is it his time to shine on the Big Break stage?
 
Kevan Maxwell (Charleston, S.C.) ' Aspiring golf professional by day, pizza delivery man by night, K-Max will do whatever it takes to play on the PGA TOUR.
 
Blake Moore (Monrovia, Calif.) ' Friend of former Big Break competitor and PGA TOUR rookie James Nitties, Moore is a threat to win Big Break Disney Golf if he can control his inner demons.
 
Sean Kalin (Delray Beach, Fla.) ' A junior standout who gave up golf for 20 years after being kidnapped, he is looking for a second chance in the game.
 
GOLF CHANNELs Vince Cellini and Stephanie Sparks will reprise their roles as co-hosts to add insight to the series.
 
Past Big Break champions won tournament exemptions to compete on some of the worlds top professional circuits, such as the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour, European Tour, LPGA Tour, Nationwide Tour and Canadian Tour. Former Big Breakers Tommy Gainey and Nitties compete on the PGA TOUR in 2009 while four previous female contestants currently play on the LPGA Tour, including Kristy McPherson, a member of the 2009 U.S. Solheim Cup Team.
 
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For more information, please contact Mark Mitchell at 407-355-4063, or mmitchell@golfchannel.com.
 
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Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings

By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 2:19 am

Pat Perez is unhappy about his standing on the U.S. Ryder Cup points list, and his situation won't improve this week.

Perez won the CIMB Classic during the fall portion of this season, and he followed that with a T-5 finish at the inaugural CJ Cup. But he didn't receive any Ryder Cup points for either result because of a rule enacted by the American task force prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup which only awards points during the calendar year of the biennial matches as well as select events like majors and WGCs during the prior year.

As a result, Perez is currently 17th in the American points race - behind players like Patrick Reed, Zach Johnson, Bill Haas and James Hahn, none of whom have won a tournament since the 2016 Ryder Cup - as he looks to make a U.S. squad for the first time at age 42.

"That kind of upset me a little bit, the fact that I'm (17) on the list, but I should probably be (No.) 3 or 4," Perez told Golf Digest. "So it kind of put a bitter taste in my mouth. The fact that you win on the PGA Tour and you beat some good players, yet you don't get any points because of what our committee has decided to do."

Perez won't be earning any points this week because he has opted to tee it up at the European Tour's Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The decision comes after Perez finished T-21 last week at the Singapore Open, and it means that the veteran is missing the Farmers Insurance Open in his former hometown of San Diego for the first time since 2001.

Perez went to high school a few minutes from Torrey Pines, and he defeated a field that included Tiger Woods to win the junior world title on the South Course in 1993. His father, Tony, has been a longtime starter on the tournament's opening hole, and Perez was a runner-up in 2014 and tied for fourth last year.

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Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut

By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 1:54 am

If the Las Vegas bookmakers are to be believed, folks in the San Diego area hoping to see Tiger Woods this week might want to head to Torrey Pines early.

Woods is making his first competitive start of the year this week at the Farmers Insurance Open, and it will be his first official start on the PGA Tour since last year's event. He missed nearly all of 2017 because of a back injury before returning with a T-9 finish last month at the Hero World Challenge.

But the South Course at Torrey Pines is a far different test than Albany, and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists Woods as a -180 favorite to miss the 36-hole cut. It means bettors must wager $180 to win $100, while his +150 odds to make the cut mean a bettor can win $150 with a $100 wager.

Woods is listed at 25/1 to win. He won the tournament for the seventh time in 2013, but in three appearances since he has missed the 36-hole cut, missed the 54-hole cut and withdrawn after 12 holes.

Here's a look at the various Woods-related prop bets available at the Westgate:

Will Woods make the 36-hole cut? Yes +150, No -180

Lowest single-round score (both courses par 72): Over/Under 70

Highest single-round score: Over/Under 74.5

Will Woods finish inside the top 10? Yes +350, No -450

Will Woods finish inside the top 20? Yes +170, No -200

Will Woods withdraw during the tournament? Yes +650, No -1000

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Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements

By Rex HoggardJanuary 24, 2018, 12:27 am

SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance announced on Tuesday at Torrey Pines a seven-year extension of the company’s sponsorship of the Southern California PGA Tour event. This comes on the heels of Sony extending its sponsorship of the year’s first full-field event in Hawaii through 2022.

Although these might seem to be relatively predictable moves, considering the drastic makeover of the Tour schedule that will begin with the 2018-19 season, it is a telling sign of the confidence corporations have in professional golf.

“It’s a compliment to our players and the value that the sponsors are achieving,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.

Monahan said that before 2014 there were no 10-year title sponsorship agreements in place. Now there are seven events sponsored for 10-years, and another five tournaments that have agreements in place of at least seven years.

“What it means is, it gives organizations like the Century Club [which hosts this week’s Farmers Insurance Open], when you have that level of stability on a long-term basis that allows you to invest in your product, to grow interest and to grow the impact of it,” Monahan said. “You experienced what this was like in 2010 or seen other tournaments that you don’t know what the future is.S o to go out and sell and inspire a community and you can’t state that we have a long-term agreement it’s more difficult.”

Events like this year’s Houston Open, Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas, and The National all currently don’t have title sponsors – although officials at Colonial are confident they can piece together a sponsorship package. But even that is encouraging to Monahan considering the uncertainty surrounding next season’s schedule, which will include the PGA Championship moving to May and The Players to March as well as a pre-Labor Day finish to the season.

“When you look back historically to any given year [the number of events needing sponsors] is lower than the typical average,” Monahan said. “As we start looking to a new schedule next year, you get excited about a great schedule with a great group of partners.”

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Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 24, 2018, 12:07 am

SAN DIEGO – Jason Day has withdrawn from the Wednesday pro-am at the Farmers Insurance Open, citing a sore back.

Day, the 2015 champion, played a practice round with Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau on Tuesday at Torrey Pines, and he is still expected to play in the tournament.

Day was replaced in the pro-am by Whee Kim. 

Making his first start since the Australian Open in November, Day is scheduled to tee off at 1:30 p.m. ET Thursday alongside Jon Rahm and Brandt Snedeker.