Golf Channel Dedicating Five Hours of Live Coverage Showcasing Junior Golfers from Across U.S. and Canada, Including a Series of Dedicated Features Profiling Competitors in the Field
Golf Channel announced production plans for its live coverage of the 2018 Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals, airing Sunday, April 1, beginning at 8 a.m. ET, when 80 national finalists from across the U.S. and Canada will convene at Augusta National Golf Club to officially kick off Masters week. The extraordinary field is made up of 40 boys and 40 girls, who advanced from more than 260 local qualifying events across the United States, followed by 53 sub-regional and 10 regional qualifiers.
“The Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals has become one of the most-cherished events on the golf calendar and something our network eagerly anticipates to kick off Masters week,” said Molly Solomon, Golf Channel executive producer and executive vice president of content. “The wonderful partnership of the Masters Tournament, USGA and PGA of America brings together some of the finest young personalities this game has to offer and presents them with the opportunity to create memories that will last a lifetime.”
Televising live coverage of the National Finals for the fifth consecutive year, Golf Channel will showcase the talents of the 80 national finalists in addition to airing several dedicated features introducing viewers to players across the eight respective age groups (Boys/Girls 7-9; 10-11; 12-13 and 14-15.)
Each competitor will participate in three respective skills: the Drive, Chip and Putt. Participants will accumulate points in each skill, with champions recognized in each skill across the eight age groups. The participant with the highest number of combined points from all skills will be declared the overall champion of his or her age group.
The Drive skill will be contested from Augusta National’s Tournament Practice Area, with players hitting two drives; the longer of the two (provided it is in bounds) will be counted for score. The Chip skill, (also conducted from the Tournament Practice Area) will include two chips, and the player’s score will be calculated based on cumulative proximity to the hole. The Putt skill, staged on Augusta National’s 18th green, will be measured based on finalists’ cumulative proximity to the hole from two different putting distances.
Rich Lerner and Peter Jacobsen will call the action from the booth, while Justin Leonard and Paige Mackenzie will report from the Tournament Practice Area, and Charlie Rymer from the 18th green. Steve Sands will handle interviews with special guests on-site at Augusta National during the telecast, including past Masters champions and Tournament Invitees interacting with finalists and discussing the initiative as a vehicle for growing the game. In addition to its on-air telecast, Golf Channel also will dedicate pre- and post-event coverage on Golf Central and Morning Drive, and via Golf Channel Digital.
The Drive, Chip and Putt National Finals kick off Golf Channel’s weeklong coverage of the Masters, featuring more than 150 hours of Masters-themed programming, led by the network’s Golf Central Live From the Masters news coverage.
For more information, visit DriveChipandPutt.com.