Skip to main content

Eight Men, Four Women Vying for Volvik World Long Drive Championship, Live on Golf Channel

Getty Images

World No. 2 Will Hogue (Three-time Tour Event winner in 2018) & Two-Time World Champion Tim Burke Lead Open (Men’s) Division Field; Two-time World Champion Phillis Meti Aiming for Third Women’s Title 

Eddie Fernandes Wins Masters Division World Championship

Eight men and four women tonight will be vying for the coveted championship belt and the title of the longest hitter in golf, as the 43rd Volvik World Long Drive Championshipculminates under the lights and in primetime live on Golf Channel at 9 p.m. ET. Leading the field of eight remaining men in the Open Division include World No. 2 ranked competitor (and three-time Tour event winner in 2018) Will Hogue, who is looking to win his first world championship, along with two-time world champion Tim Burke, who is seeking his third championship belt. In the Women’s Division, two-time world champion Phillis Meti is hoping to capture her second world title in three years, and third overall. She’ll go up against fellow world champion Heather Manfredda, along with Chloe Garner and Emily Tubert, who earned her first World Long Drive victory last month. 

Originating in 1976, the 2018 Volvik World Long Drive Championship marks the fifth televised WLDA event of the year, and is being contested on the Texas / Oklahoma border at WinStar World Casino and Resort, which hosts the event for the fourth consecutive year. Tonight’s telecast will feature the quarterfinal, semifinal and championship matches in the Open Division, along with the Women’s Division’s semifinal and championship matches:

 

OPEN DIVISION QUARTERFINAL MATCHES (Seeds based on World Ranking):

(1) Will Hogue (Memphis, Tenn.) vs. (8) Justin Moose (Columbia, S.C.)

(4) Ryan Steenberg (Rochester, N.Y.) vs. (12) Jim Waldron (Scottsdale, Ariz.)

(6) Tim Burke (Orlando, Fla.) vs. (14) Josh Cassaday (Denver, Colo.)

(2) Maurice Allen (Pine Hills, Fla.) vs. (10) Mark Costello (Houston, Texas)

 

WOMEN’S DIVISION SEMIFINAL MATCHES:

Emily Tubert (Burbank, Calif.) vs. Chloe Garner (Johnson City, Tenn.)

Phillis Meti (Auckland, New Zealand) vs. Heather Manfredda (Shelbyville, Ky.)

 

FERNANDES WINS MASTERS DIVISION WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP: In addition to the Open Division Round of 16 matches, Tuesday night’s live telecast also saw Eddie Fernandes (Winter Garden, Fla.) defeat Jeff Gavin (Stoney Creek, Ont., Canada) in the championship match of the Masters Division (age 45+) to claim his first-ever world championship. The 47-year-old Fernandes became emotional while accepting the championship belt afterward in paying respect to those who helped him to victory.

RECAP – TUESDAY NIGHT’S ROUND OF 16: The eight men that will be on display tonight each were able to win their Round of 16 match on Tuesday. Highlights:

WRAPAROUND NEWS AND LIVE COVERAGE: Golf Central will preview the Championship tonight at 8:30 p.m. ET, prior to the live competition getting underway at 9 p.m. ET.

TECHNOLOGY-ENHANCED PRODUCTION: The production centering around live coverage of the Volvik World Long Drive Championship will utilize 13 dedicated cameras, capturing all angles from the hitting platform and the landing grid, including two SuperMo cameras as well as two craned-positioned cameras that will track the ball in flight once it leaves the competitor’s clubface. An overlaid graphic line on the grid, the “DXL Big Drive to Beat,” (similar to the “1st & 10 line” made popular in football) will display the longest drive during a given match to signify the driving distance an opposing competitor will need to surpass to take the lead. The telecast also will feature a custom graphics package suited to the anomalous swing data typically generated by World Long Drive competitors, tracking club speed, ball speed and apex in real-time via Trackman. Trackman technology also will provide viewers with a sense of ball flight, tracing the arc of each drive from the moment of impact.

BROADCAST TEAM: Veteran sports broadcaster Jonathan Coachman will conduct play-by-play alongside Art Sellinger, World Long Drive pioneer and two-time world champion (1986, ’91). Golf Channel’s Jerry Foltz will offer reports from the teeing platform and conduct interviews with competitors in the field during live coverage of the competition, while George Savaricas will report from on-site for Golf Central.

DIGITAL & SOCIAL MEDIA COVERAGE: Fans can stay up-to-date on all of the action surrounding the Volvik World Long Drive Championship by following @GolfChannel and @WorldLongDrive on social media. Golf Channel social media host Alexandra O’Laughlin will be on-site contributing to the social conversation as the World Championship unfolds, and, the telecast will integrate social media-generated content during live coverage tonight and Wednesday, using the hashtag, #WorldLongDrive. Additional custom-content will be shared via World Long Drive and Golf Channel’s digital and social media platforms leading up to the World Championship, featuring insight from some of the top competitors previewing the event in one-on-one interviews with Coachman. WorldLongDrive.com also will feature the latest video and highlights from on-site, along with real-time scoring for the duration of the event.

2018 WLDA VIEWERSHIP, SEASON RECAP: Ahead of the Volvik World Long Drive Championship, the World Long Drive Association has accounted for nearly 6 million viewers year-to-date, +70% vs. 2017 (prior to the World Championship). Event winners over the course of the season heading into the World Championship include:

 

DATE

EVENT

LOCATION

WINNER(S)

March 15-17

East Coast   Classic

West   Columbia, S.C.

Justin   Moose

April 21-24

Clash in   the Canyon (*Golf Channel*)

Mesquite,   Nev.

Alexis   Belton, Will Hogue

May 11-15

Ak-Chin   Smash in the Sun (*Golf Channel*)

Maricopa,   Ariz.

Phillis   Meti, Will Hogue

June 4-5

Atlantic   City Boardwalk Bash (*Golf Channel*)

Atlantic   City, N.J.

Sandra   Carlborg, Mark Costello

June 21-23

Bluff City   Shootout

Memphis,   Tenn.

Will Hogue

July 6-8

Bash For   Cash

Port Rowan, Ont., Canada

Ryan Steenberg

August 2-4

WinStar   Midwest Slam

Thackerville,   Okla.

Kyle   Berkshire

August   12-13

Tennessee   Big Shots benefitting Niswonger Children’s Hospital (*Golf Channel*)

Kingsport,   Tenn.

Emily   Tubert, Justin James

September   1-5

Volvik   World Long Drive Championship (*Golf Channel*)

Thackerville,   Okla.

TBD