Jackie Stoelting (Vero Beach, Fla.) defeated Fiamma Felitch (Oklahoma City, Okla.), 4&3 in the championship match on Monday’s season finale of Big Break Florida, Golf Channel’s 21st season of its competition franchise.
Contested at the Oak Marsh Golf Course at Omni Amelia Island Plantation, Stoelting controlled the championship match from the outset, building a 5-up lead through the first eight holes. She maintained her lead over Felitch and two-putted the par-4 15th hole to close out the match 4&3.
“It means the world to me, I’m just so thankful and I can’t believe it,” said an emotional Stoelting following the conclusion of the match. “This is a rollercoaster. I played really well and this is going to change my life.”
As champion of Big Break Florida, Stoelting will receive an invitation to compete in the LPGA Tour’s 2014 Manulife Financial LPGA Classic, June 5-8. In addition, she will receive:
- $65,000 in cash, including $5,000 courtesy of Dick’s Sporting Goods and $10,000 courtesy of Macanudo.
- Full, exempt status to the 2015 Symetra Tour season with all entry fees paid.
- An endorsement contract from Adams Golf, including $10,000 in cash.
- $10,000 in car rental credit courtesy of Avis Car Rental.
- $13,000 in travel credit courtesy of Travelocity.
- A four-day, three-night stay at any Omni golf resort in the United States.
As a result of winning challenge prizes during the course of the series, Stoelting also earned:
- Custom hybrids courtesy of Adams Golf.
- $4,000 in travel credit courtesy of Travelocity.
- $7,500 courtesy of Macanudo.
- A three-day, two-night return trip to Omni Amelia Island Plantation.
Felitch earned the following challenge prizes during the course of the series:
- $10,000 courtesy of Macanudo.
- $2,500 in car rental credit courtesy of Avis Car Rental.
- $2,000 in travel credit courtesy of Travelocity.
Stoelting has been riding a wave of momentum on the golf course as of late. In 2013, she qualified and made the cut in the prestigious U.S. Women’s Open in June, and in December, earned conditional LPGA status for 2014 by finishing T38 during Stage III of LPGA Q School. She has focused her 2014 season on the Symetra Tour thus far, which has included three top-10 finishes and currently stands in sixth place on the Volvik Race for the Card Money List. She will make her 2014 LPGA debut at the Manulife Financial LPGA Classic in June as a result of winning Big Break Florida.
Filmed on location in October 2013, Big Break Florida was produced in partnership with VISIT FLORIDA and the competition unfolded at Omni Amelia Island Plantation’s three award-winning golf courses: Oak Marsh, Ocean Links and Long Point Golf Courses. Oak Marsh Golf Course, a classic Pete Dye design, is ranked as one of the top 75 resort courses in the U.S. by Golf Digest and as one of “Florida’s 50 Finest Courses” by Travel & Leisure. Ocean Links Golf Course, a Bobby Weed design, features five oceanfront holes overlooking the Atlantic Ocean, and winds through six miles of natural sand dunes and seaside terrain that is unique to Amelia Island. Long Point Golf Course is a Tom Fazio design that features rolling fairways winding through three distinctive settings: marshlands, thick oak and pine forest, and scenic oceanfront dunes.
Golf Channel’s Big Break show concept pits highly skilled golfers against each other in a variety of challenges that test their physical skills and mental toughness. The competitors are subject to skills competitions from tee-to-green, including two of the series’ signature challenges, the popular “Glass Break” and “Flop Wall” challenges. One contestant is eliminated each week, with the last player standing awarded his or her Big Break, an opportunity to compete at golf’s highest level.
Past Big Break champions have won tournament exemptions to compete on some of the world’s top professional circuits, including the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour, European Tour, LPGA Tour, Web.com Tour and Canadian Tour.
Tommy “Two Gloves” Gainey, Big Break VII: Reunion champion and PGA TOUR professional, captured his first PGA TOUR victory in 2012 at The McGladrey Classic and is playing full-time on the PGA TOUR. Matt Every (Big Break Mesquite competitor) earned his first PGA TOUR victory at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in April 2014. 2013 Solheim Cup team member Gerina Piller (Big Break Prince Edward Island competitor), 2011 Solheim Cup team member Ryann O’Toole (Big Break Sandals Resorts competitor) and 2009 U.S. Solheim Cup Team member Kristy McPherson (Big Break VI: Trump National competitor) are currently playing full-time on the LPGA Tour. Several other past Big Break competitors are currently competing on the PGA TOUR or LPGA Tour, including Kim Welch and Nicole Smith.
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