STUDIO CITY, June 11, 2008 — The California Golf Association (CGA) board of directors has adopted significant changes in its three major championship events beginning in 2008.
The board voted to require all contestants to walk in the championship proper, beginning with this year’s championship that will be played June 16-21, 2008 at Lakeside Golf Club in Toluca Lake and Oakmont Country Club in Glendale. Carts will continue to be allowed in California Amateur qualifying events and the CGA will use United States Golf Association guidelines in determining exemptions from the walking-only rule for ADA-approved disabilities.
“The CGA board decided to have all players walk in the California Amateur in keeping with the traditions established by the USGA in its championships,” says CGA President Ed Holmes of Riverside. “In addition, the use of carts for the event was sometimes a distraction for the players and the Board felt that walking would increase the stature of the event.”
Future California Amateur host courses can all be walked easily, says Holmes (the 2009 championship is set for Lake Merced GC in Daly City). “As we add to the list of courses that will host the state amateur in the coming years, we realize that on an individual basis carts may have to be used at certain venues, but the basic philosophy will be to walk in the championship.”
CGA Amateur Championship
The CGA Senior Amateur Championship will shift dates to the fall, with the 17th CGA Senior Amateur to be played Sept. 15-17 at Poppy Hills GC in Pebble Beach.
“For some time,” says Holmes, “the CGA board has debated moving the dates of the senior championship to allow the tournament to have its own ‘day in the sun’ without being overshadowed by the state amateur. Now that the California Amateur is alternating between Northern and Southern California, this seemed like an appropriate year to make this change.”
The event will continue to be played at Poppy Hills. “We talked with many contestants,” explains Holmes, “and the overwhelming majority wanted to stay at Poppy Hills.”
CGA Net Amateur Match Play
After lengthy discussion over several years, the CGA board has voted to end the CGA Net Amateur Match Play event, which traditionally had been held concurrent with the California Amateur in June.
“The CGA board made its decision to end the handicap event as a result of four years of declining entries and what seemed to be a general lack of interest in the event,” explains Holmes.
During the past 10 years, entries have dropped from more than 700 to less than 200 and a large number of no-shows resulted in byes in many flights in each of the past few years.
“The decision was after a thorough examination of the entries and the consistent need for byes in nearly all flights,” says Holmes. “Running this event has always necessitated an extraordinarily large amount of time from staff and volunteers and the board feels that those resources can be put to better use.”
The California Golf Association was founded in 1912, initially to conduct the California Amateur Championship. In addition to the California Amateur and the CGA Senior Amateur, the CGA conducts the biennial Seaver Cup matches and the CIF-CGA High School State Championships for boys and girls.