Skip to main content

Military Division, David Feherty amplify upcoming World Long Drive event

Next week, World Long Drive will host the Exchange Celebrating Service: Fort Jackson, being staged Sunday-Tuesday, May 5-7 at Fort Jackson (South Carolina), and feature – for the first time – a division represented by military service members, in addition to the Open and Women’s Divisions.

Today, it was announced that NBC Sports analyst and Emmy-nominated host David Feherty will contribute to GOLF Channel’s on-site coverage of the event from Fort Jackson, as a passionate advocate for U.S. military service members. Feherty is the co-founder of Feherty’s Troops First Foundation, which was established in 2008 to develop, operate and support wellness, quality of life and event-based initiatives for combat-injured military service members.

“I’m looking forward to being with these soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen, especially in this environment alongside some of the longest hitters in the world,” said Feherty. “In my travels through Iraq and Afghanistan, golf was always a common thread. There was a makeshift driving range on every forward operating base, and it was obvious that hitting a golf ball was a way to relieve stress and sometimes boredom. I know I’ll come away from Fort Jackson feeling privileged to have had this experience.”

The Exchange Celebrating Service: Fort Jackson event will take place at Fort Jackson Golf Club outside of Columbia, S.C., and marks the second of six televised World Long Drive Tour events in 2019, culminating with the Volvik World Long Drive Championship in September. GOLF Channel’s live telecast of the Exchange Celebrating Service: Fort Jackson on Tuesday, May 7 (5-7:30 p.m. ET) will feature the four women, eight men, and four military service members having advanced from preliminary rounds earlier in the competition.

“Victory starts at Fort Jackson, the U.S. Army’s main production center for Basic Combat Training,” said Colonel Mike Scott, Chief Warrior and Family Support, U.S. Army Installation Management Command. “Here at Fort Jackson we receive and take more than 60,000 recruits each year – including 60 percent of all women entering the Army – and teach them how to be a part of the Army team. We are looking forward to hosting the World Long Drive and Military Long Drive competitions.”

LIVE STREAM AVAILABLE TO SERVICE MEMBERS AROUND THE WORLD: In addition to World Long Drive events airing on GOLF Channel and Sky Sports Golf in 2019, the Exchange Celebrating Service: Fort Jackson will be made available to service members around the world in real-time through a live streaming platform. Courtesy of the Army & Air Force Exchange Service, service members will be able to access the live stream through a custom authentication platform via ShopMyExchange.com. World Long Drive’s international audience includes airing events in 66 countries in 2018.

“The Exchange is honored to partner with World Long Drive to celebrate our Nation’s heroes,” said Exchange Director/CEO Tom Shull. “The competition fits in with Exchange’s commitment to military readiness and resiliency.”

MILITARY DIVISION QUALIFIERS: The Military Division will consist of 12 men having advanced from a dozen preliminary qualifying events at U.S. Army bases around the country, which were open to all active, reserve and retired Air Force, Army, Coast Guard, Marines and Navy service members. The winner of the Military Division in Fort Jackson will earn an exemption into the field at the 2019 Volvik World Long Drive Championship in September. The 12-man Military Division field consists of those having won one of the dozen qualifying events at U.S. Army installations during March-April:

 

MILITARY QUALIFIER

LOCATION

QUALIFIER WINNER

MILITARY AFFILIATION

QUALIFYING YARDAGE

March 30 – Fort Jackson (SC)

Jake Taylor

Marine Corps (Retired)

335 yards

April 2 – Fort Benning (GA)

Rob Wolfenden

Army

339 yards

April 6 – Fort Bliss (TX)

Chand Duncan

Army National Guard

382 yards

April 8 – Fort Hood (TX)

Jay Milinichik

Marines Corps (Retired)

341 yards

April 10 – Joint Base Lewis-McChord (WA)

Robert Watry

Army

332 yards

April 13 – Fort Belvoir (VA)

Ryan Hixon

Coast Guard

346 yards

April 14 – Fort Lee (VA)

Mike King

Army

337 yards

April 15 – Fort Sill (OK)

Chris MacMurray

Army

299 yards

April 17 – Aberdeen Proving Ground (MD)

Zack Rudy

Coast Guard

298 yards

April 20 – Fort Carson (CO)

Tyler Jeffers

Air Force

388 yards

April 20 – Fort Campbell (KY-TN)

Mikael Dubois

Air Force National Guard

351 yards

April 27 – Fort Bragg (NC)

Johnny Kozlowski

Navy

369 yards

 

The Exchange Celebrating Service: Fort Jackson follows the surging start to the World Long Drive season earlier this month at the Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun in Arizona, where Phillis Meti (Auckland, New Zealand) and Tim Burke (Orlando, Fla.) claimed the first victories of the year, with towering winning drives of 413 and 474 yards respectively. The Open Division field at Fort Jackson will consist of reigning Volvik World Long Drive champion Maurice Allen (Pine Hills, Fla.); current No. 1 in the world Justin James (Jacksonville, Fla.); and Will Hogue (Memphis, Tenn.), three-time Tour event winner in 2018. World No. 1 Meti leads the Women’s Division, where she’ll be joined by five-time world champion Sandra Carlborg (Alingsas, Sweden).

COVERAGE & BROADCAST TEAM: World Long Drive events airing on GOLF Channel in 2019 will utilize six dedicated cameras, capturing all angles from the hitting platform and the landing grid, including a SuperMo camera as well as two crane cameras that will track the ball in flight once it leaves the hitter’s clubface. Telecasts also will feature a custom graphics package suited to the exorbitant swing data typically generated by hitters, 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.

Veteran sports broadcaster Jonathan Coachman will call play-by-play, and be joined by analyst Art Sellinger , World Long Drive pioneer and two-time world champion (1986, ’91). GOLF Channel reporter Jerry Foltz will offer insight from the teeing platform and conduct interviews with hitters taking part in the competition, while David Feherty will focus on the respective service members in the Military Division, and provide color on Fort Jackson as a venue.

DIGITAL & SOCIAL MEDIA COVERAGE: Fans can stay connected to the action surrounding World Long Drive by following @WorldLongDrive and @GOLFChannel on social media. GOLF Channel social media host Alexandra O’Laughlin also will be on-site contributing to the social conversation at each event in 2019, and live telecasts will integrate social media-generated content through the hashtag, #WorldLongDrive. In addition to the latest video and highlights from on-site, WorldLongDrive.com will feature expanded editorial coverage and real-time scoring for the duration of the event. GOLF Channel Digital also will feature content leading up to and immediately following events telecasts.