Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Learn More about the 2017 Walker Cup

The Walker Cup is contested Sept. 9-10 at the Los Angeles (Calif.) Country Club (North Course). Here's some basic information to enhance your viewing experience.

The Los Angeles Country Club (North Course) will be set up at 7,397 yards and will play to a par of 35-35–70. The yardage for each session of the competition will vary due to course setup and conditions.

Los Angeles Country Club (North Course) Hole By Hole
Hole 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 Total
Par 5 or 4 4 4 3 4 4 3 or 4 5 4 35
Yardage 578/ 501 396 230 480 320 284/ 562 171 3,522
  509 323
Hole 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 Total
Par 4 3 4 4 5 3 4 4 4 35
Yardage 409 289 383 509 622 133 507 528 495 3,875

George C. Thomas Jr., 1927; restoration by Gil Hanse, 2010

Based on the course setup for the championship, the USGA Course Rating™ for The Los Angeles Country Club (North Course) is 76.9 and its Slope Rating® is 148.

The Walker Cup Match is contested by male amateur golfers, one team from the United States of America and one team comprised of players from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales. The teams consist of not more than 10 players and a captain. The Match is conducted every two years, alternately in the USA and in Great Britain or Ireland. This is the 46th Walker Cup Match.

The USA Team is selected by the United States Golf Association’s International Team Selection Committee. The R&A selects the team from Great Britain and Ireland.


John “Spider” Miller, of Bloomington, Ind., will serve as the captain for the 2017 USA Walker Cup Team. He was also the captain of the USA Team for the 2015 Match. He is a two-time United States Golf Association champion, winning the U.S. Mid-Amateur in 1996 and 1998, and a member of the 1999 USA Walker Cup Team. Miller defeated Randy Lewis, 3 and 2, to capture the 1996 U.S. Mid-Amateur title at Hartford Golf Club, in West Hartford, Conn. In 1998, he became the oldest Mid-Amateur champion at the time, when he won at age 48. Miller posted a 1-up victory over Chip Holcombe in the final at NCR Country Club’s South Course, in Kettering, Ohio. Miller, who played in the two Masters Tournaments as a result of his Mid-Amateur victories, represented the United States in the 1999 Walker Cup Match. He teamed with Hunter Haas to win a pair of foursomes matches before losing to Paul Casey, 3 and 2, in singles at Nairn Golf Club in Scotland. GB&I won the Match, 15-9. Miller also led Indiana to a tie for third in the 1997 USGA Men’s State Team Championship by carding a 54-hole score of 209 (4 under par). A native of Bloomington, Ind., Miller was inducted into the Indiana Golf Association (IGA) Hall of Fame in 2000. He twice was chosen IGA Player of the Year and was a two-time IGA Mid-Amateur champion. He and partner Jerry Nelson claimed five IGA Four-Ball championships and he was the low amateur at the Indiana State Open three times. Miller also won the 1999 Crump Cup at Pine Valley Golf Club and has won the Gasparilla Invitational and Tri-State Championship twice each. He has also garnered top-25 finishes in the Western Amateur, Porter Cup and Coleman Invitational. A graduate of Indiana University, Miller owns Best Beers, Inc. He and his wife, Kathy, have five children.

Craig Watson was appointed as captain of the 2017 GB&I Walker Cup Team in February 2016. The 51-year-old Watson won The Amateur Championship at Royal St George’s in 1997 with a 3-and-2 victory over future Masters champion Trevor Immelman of South Africa. Watson played in The Open that year at Royal Troon and the Masters Tournament in 1998. He has won eight Scottish Golf Order of Merit titles. Watson was a member of the GB&I team that played in the 1997 Walker Cup Match at Quaker Ridge Golf Club in Scarsdale, N.Y., where he secured 1½ points from the three matches he played. “Playing in the Walker Cup was one of my proudest moments in golf,” said Watson. In 2016, he captained the GB&I St Andrews Trophy team as they tied the Continent of Europe, 12½- 12½ at Prince’s Golf Club. Watson has enjoyed a long and successful amateur playing career. He represented GB&I in the St Andrews Trophy, which lost 14-10 to the Continent of Europe at Villa D’Este in Italy in 1998. He played for Scotland in the Home Internationals in all but one year from 1991 to 2003 and captained the side from 2001-2003 before serving as a non-playing captain in 2004. Watson played in the European Men’s Team Championship in 1997, 1999 and 2001, captaining the side to victory in 2001. A two-time winner of the St Andrews Links Trophy in 1992 and 1998, he was also the runner-up in the Scottish Amateur Championship at Downfield in 2001.

Andrew Ingram will serve as acting captain with the announcement on Aug. 30 that Craig Watson was relinquishing his duties as captain due to a serious illness in his immediate family. The 57-year-old Ingram represented Wales at junior and youth level before going on to captain the Welsh men’s Home Internationals team on five occasions, including their victory in 2002. He became chairman of the R&A Men’s Selection Committee in 2014 and has been chairman of the Teams and Performance Committee at the Golf Union of Wales for more than 10 years. Ingram captained the winning European Junior Ryder Cup Team in the USA in 2004 and also at Celtic Manor in 2006 where Europe retained the trophy. He is a member at Royal Porthcawl.

Tickets for the 46th Walker Cup Match are available at www.walkercup.org. Grounds tickets for competition days are $75. Youth (age 16 and younger and accompanied by a ticketed adult) and active military are admitted free.

On Saturday, Sept. 9, there will be four foursomes (alternate-shot) matches in the morning and eight singles matches in the afternoon. On Sunday, Sept. 10, there will be four foursomes matches in the morning and 10 singles matches in the afternoon. All matches will be 18 holes.

All Times Local (PDT)
- Friday, Sept. 8 (Note: All times are subject to change)
5:30 p.m.  - Opening Ceremony

- Saturday, Sept. 9
7:30 a.m.-noon - Foursomes (four matches)
1-6 p.m. - Singles (eight matches)

- Sunday, Sept. 10
7:30 a.m.-noon - Foursomes (four matches)
1-6 p.m. - Singles (10 matches)            

Foursomes is a match in which two players compete against two others players in an alternate-shot format, with each side playing just one ball.

A victory in each match scores one point. In the event a match goes 18 holes without a winner, a half-point is awarded to each team.

The team that scores the most points wins the Match. In the event of a tie, the team that won the previous competition retains the Walker Cup.

TELEVISION SCHEDULE                   
The 2017 Walker Cup Match will receive at least 12 hours of live network coverage. Shane O’Donoghue will anchor the Fox Sports 1 (FS1) telecasts with Paul Azinger and Brad Faxon in the 18th-hole tower. The broadcast team includes two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange, five-time USGA champion Juli Inkster, two-time USA Walker Cup captain and player Buddy Marucci, and Shane Bacon.

Date       Network     Broadcast Hours (Local/PDT)
Sept. 9      FS1            Foursomes, 9 a.m.-noon
                 FS1            Singles, 2-5 p.m.
Sept. 10    FS1            Foursomes, 9 a.m.-noon
                 FS1            Singles, 3-6 p.m.

This is the 46th Walker Cup Match. The competition began in the wake of World War I, following a series of meetings between the United States Golf Association and The Royal and Ancient Golf Club, the key purpose of which was a discussion of modifying the Rules of Golf. As part of the meetings, an international team competition was discussed, with the aim of strengthening understanding and friendship between The R&A and the USGA.

Among those attending the meetings at The R&A was George Herbert Walker, USGA president in 1920. Walker soon presented a plan for the competition and offered to donate a trophy. When the press dubbed the trophy the Walker Cup, the name stuck.

The first Walker Cup Match was contested in 1922 at the National Golf Links of America in Southampton, N.Y. Led by playing captain William C. Fownes Jr., the USA won the inaugural Match, 8-4. The USA leads the series, 35-9-1. Since 1989, however, when GB&I won for the first time in the USA, by one point at Peachtree Golf Club in Atlanta, Ga., the series is tied at seven victories apiece.

2015 Walker Cup: Royal Lytham & St. Annes, Lancashire, England (GB&I 16½, USA 9½)
2013 Walker Cup: National Golf Links of America, Southampton, N.Y. (USA 17, GB&I 9)
2011 Walker Cup: Royal Aberdeen Golf Club, Aberdeen, Scotland (GB&I 14, USA 12)
2009 Walker Cup: Merion Golf Club, Ardmore, Pa. (USA 16½, GB&I 9½)
2007 Walker Cup: Royal County Down, Newcastle, County Down, Ireland (USA 12½, GB&I 11½)
2005 Walker Cup: Chicago Golf Club, Wheaton, Ill. (USA 12½, GB&I 11½)
2003 Walker Cup: Ganton Golf Club, Ganton, England (GB&I 12½, USA 11½)
2001 Walker Cup: Ocean Forest Golf Club, Sea Island, Ga. (GB&I 15, USA 9)
1999 Walker Cup: Nairn Golf Club, Nairn, Scotland (GB&I 15, USA 9)
1997 Walker Cup: Quaker Ridge Golf Club, Scarsdale, N.Y. (USA 18, GB&I 6)
1995 Walker Cup: Royal Porthcawl, Porthcawl, Wales (GB&I 14, USA 10)
1993 Walker Cup: Interlachen Country Club, Edina, Minn. (USA 19, GB&I 5)
1991 Walker Cup: Portmarnock Golf Club, Portmarnock, County Dublin, Ireland (USA 14, GB&I 10)
1989 Walker Cup: Peachtree Golf Club, Atlanta, Ga. (GB&I 12½, USA 11½)

- Sept. 7-8, 2019: Royal Liverpool Golf Club, Hoylake, England
- May 8-9, 2021: Seminole Golf Club, Juno Beach, Fla.
- 2023: TBD
- Sept. 6-7, 2025: Cypress Point Club, Pebble Beach, Calif.

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