The MasterCard Classic, which is the fifth full-field event of the season, is also in its fifth year on the Champions Tour schedule, all of which have been played in Mexico. This will be the second straight year in which the BosqueReal Country Club has hosted the event.
Defending champion David Eger is hoping he can keep his personal party going after his emotional first-ever Champions Tour win last year, in which he held off Hale Irwin, Eamonn Darcy, Tom Jenkins and 2002 champion Bruce Lietzke.
Eger, who joined the senior circuit in 2002, had to birdie three of his last four holes to capture the one stroke victory.
Other top stars set to tee it up are the abovementioned Irwin and Tom Kite.
Irwin, 58, whose tie for second was one of three second-place finishes on the year, eventually went on to win at the Kinko's Classic in May, marking the longest he'd gone into a season before winning a title since the 2000 season.
Kite, who is looking for his first win on tour dating back to the Napa Valley Championship in October of 2002, hopes to improve his early season results in which he has only one top 10 showing.
Some of the familiar names that are generally found atop the leaderboard are notably absent, including reigning Player of the Year Tom Watson, Fuzzy Zoeller, Craig Stadler and Bruce Fleischer.
In fact, only one player who has won a 2004 event is in the field, that being South African Mark McNulty, who won the Outback Steakhouse Pro-Am in Tampa last month.
Longtime PGA Tour player Keith Fergus, who turns 50 on Wednesday, will be making his tour debut at the MasterCard Classic. Fergus won three times on the PGA Tour, first at the 1981 Memorial Tournament, then at the 1982 Georgia-Pacific Atlanta Golf Classic, and his last victory coming at the 1983 Bob Hope Desert Classic.
Fergus played in five regular tour events last year in preparation for his rookie year on the senior circuit.
The Golf Channel will air all three rounds live, from 5:00 - 7:30PM(ET), Friday through Sunday.
The purse for the MasterCard Classic is $2,000,000 with a first-place check of $300,000.
The Champions Tour travels next week to Valencia, Calif., for the SBC Classic.