Last month Kip, received a taste of what is to come when he showed up in Richmond for the tournaments media day. Everyone from waiters to shoe shine guys knew who I was, he exclaimed. And he also walked away with a new caddy for the event, Mike Sawyer, CEO of Saxon Capital Mortgage Company, one of the tournaments sponsors. It seems that everyone wants Kip to succeed at this event and is willing to lend a helping hand. With the golf skills that won him his Big Break, expectations are high that Kip will thrive.
Kip will be playing against Tour favorites John E. Morgan, Bill Haas, Esteban Toledo, and Dicky Pride for a chance to share in the $450,000 purse. The tournament, in its 13th year, boasts past winners that include Mark Hensby (2003), Chad Campbell (2001), and Olin Browne (1996), all three of whom have gone on to play on the PGA TOUR.
The Henrico County Open is just the first in a list of Nationwide Tour exemptions for Kip including the Chattanooga Classic June 2-5, LaSalle Bank Open June 9-12, Knoxville Open June 16-19, Lake Erie Charity Classic June 30-July 3, and the National Mining Association Pete Dye Classic July 7-10. In addition to the Nationwide Events, Kip also recently qualified to play in his first PGA Event of the year, the FedEx St. Jude Classic, May 23-29.
Coverage of the Henrico Country Open starts Thursday, May 19th on The Golf Channel and will last throughout the weekend. Be sure to tune in as Kip gets a shot at his Big Break!