U.S. Walker Cup Prep is a Crash Course in Team Bonding
03 Sep 2017
by AmateurGolf.com Staff

see also: The Walker Cup, St. Andrews - Old Course

LACC will be the home base for Walker Cup prep, but<br>with plenty of excursions thrown in (USGA photo)
LACC will be the home base for Walker Cup prep, but
with plenty of excursions thrown in (USGA photo)

LOS ANGELES, CA (September 3, 2017) - Walker Cup preparations are underway as the U.S. team looks ahead to the start of the matches Saturday and Sunday, September 9-10.

Team camaraderie has been proven to be an essential component of success at professional team events like the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup, but the pros have the advantage of seeing each other and playing with one another throughout the year. Further, many of them have represented their country together before in previous Ryder or Presidents Cup matches.

Related: Meet the 2017 U.S. Walker Cup Team
Related: TOURNAMENT CENTRAL: The Walker Cup

It's different for the amateurs. True, many of the college-aged guys have seen each other as they have grown up playing junior tournaments, and maybe have played together a handful of times in college or amateur circles. But they cross paths far more infrequently than the pros, and someone like Stewart Hagestad might have never even met someone like Doc Redman before they were both named to the team two weeks ago. Maverick McNealy is the only player on the squad to have played in a Walker Cup before.

It's a unique challenge for the USGA and Captain John "Spider" Miller. Their solution is to put together a whirlwind of golf and social activities leading up to the Walker Cup to serve as a crash course in team bonding that they hope will carry over into the Match itself and help bring the U.S. a much-need victory after a disappointing defeat two years ago in England.

“During these days, we’re getting the guys to know each other and sorting through who we’re going to pair in foursomes,” Miller said.

The preparation started a few days ago in Los Angeles. If the team had any doubt about how it might be treated as representatives of the USA, it was surely erased when they checked into the Beverly Hills Hilton and were outfitted with Polo Golf team uniforms.

Here is the schedule of activities for the U.S. team, from arrival in L.A. to the start of the Walker Cup Match:

Thu Aug 31
Arrival in Los Angeles, practice at Los Angeles Country Club

Fri Sep 1
Arrival in Los Angeles, practice at Los Angeles Country Club

Sat Sep 2
Visit to Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center to see the Space Shuttle Endeavour; Practice round at Bel-Air Country Club in west L.A.

Sun Sep 3
Practice round at Los Angeles Country Club; Visit to Universal Studios in Hollywood

Mon Sep 4
Visit to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley; Practice round at the Valley Club of Montecito in Santa Barbara

Tue Sep 5
Practice and play at Los Angeles Country Club

Wed Sep 6
Practice and play at Los Angeles Country Club

Thu Sep 7
Lunch with former President George W. Bush; Practice and play at Los Angeles Country Club

Fri Sep 8
Official Practice Rounds at Los Angeles Country Club; Walker Cup Opening Ceremony

Sat Sep 9
The 46th Walker Cup matches begin

Related: Walker Cup: TV Times, Schedule of Play from Los Angeles CC

- Golfweek contributed to this report

ABOUT THE The Walker Cup

The Walker Cup Match is a biennial 10-man amateur team competition between the USA and a team composed of players from Great Britain and Ireland and selected by The R&A. It is played over two days with 18 singles matches and eight foursomes (alternate-shot) matches.

The first United States Walker Cup Team, which in 1922 defeated the GB&I side, 8-4, at the National Golf Links of America, is considered among the best teams ever and included Francis Ouimet, Bob Jones, Charles “Chick” Evans and Jess Sweetser. Many of the game’s greatest players have taken part in Walker Cup competition, including U.S. Open champions Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Jordan Spieth for the USA and Graeme McDowell, Rory McIlroy and Justin Rose for Great Britain and Ireland.

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