CARMEL, Ind. (February 25, 2020) … The Western Golf Association will bring one of the world’s oldest amateur golf championships to central Indiana for the first time in 2020 when Crooked Stick Golf Club in Carmel hosts the 118th Western Amateur on July 27-August 1.
First held in 1899, the Western Amateur features one of the deepest and strongest fields in amateur golf as well as the game’s most grueling format. It is the world’s third oldest amateur championship behind the British Amateur (1885) and the U.S. Amateur (1895), and attracts top-ranked golfers from around the world. Past Western Amateur champions include Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson.
In its storied history, the Western Amateur has never been played at Crooked Stick. It has been contested in the state of Indiana only two times, when South Bend Country Club played host in 1938 and 1951.
Crooked Stick has twice hosted the WGA-conducted BMW Championship, the penultimate event in the PGA TOUR’s FedExCup Playoffs. Rory McIlroy won the 2012 BMW Championship at Crooked Stick, and Dustin Johnson claimed the title when the event returned for an encore in 2016.
The two BMW Championships raised nearly $6 million for the WGA-supported Evans Scholars Foundation. All proceeds from the 2020 Western Amateur also will benefit the Foundation, which funds full tuition and housing college scholarships for caddies.
“Crooked Stick’s members and staff have been excellent partners with us, both for our championships and through their support of our mission to send caddies to college on Evans Scholarships,” said Vince Pellegrino, WGA senior vice president of tournaments. “Crooked Stick has already produced two worthy winners of our BMW Championship, so we’re really looking forward to see how our elite field of amateur golfers fare on this challenging layout.”
Built in 1964 by famed course architect and club co-founder Pete Dye, Crooked Stick has hosted numerous national competitions, including the 1991 PGA Championship won by John Daly and the 1993 U.S. Women’s Open won by Lauri Merten. It has consistently been ranked as one of the top 100 courses in the United States by Golf Digest, Golf Magazine and Golfweek.
“The Western Amateur Championship is not only one of the most prestigious amateur events in the world, it can be a life changing experience for the young men who are teeing it up here at Crooked Stick,” said Don Dunbar, Crooked Stick president. “It’s also an opportunity for our membership to interact closely with the future stars of the game and develop lifelong friendships. We’re looking forward to a great week for our membership as we host the finest amateur golfers in the world on our Pete Dye golf course.”
Crooked Stick has been a steadfast partner of the Evans Scholars Foundation for over 30 years. Established in 1930 by famed golfer Charles “Chick” Evans Jr. and the WGA, the Foundation has awarded full tuition and housing scholarships to more than 11,000 caddies, including 1,010 caddies currently in school. Twenty-four of those recipients caddied at Crooked Stick, including current Evans Scholar Joe Conway, a freshman at Purdue University.
The Western Amateur Format
A combination of stroke play and match play competition, the Western Amateur can be the most demanding event in professional or amateur golf.
Competition includes two 18-hole stroke play rounds on Tuesday and Wednesday followed by a cut to the players with the low 44 scores and ties. Those who make the cut then play 36 holes of stroke play on Thursday, with the low 16 advancing to match play on Friday.
Qualifying for the Western Amateur’s “Sweet 16” match play competition is one of the treasured accomplishments each year among the world’s top-ranked amateurs. The first two rounds of 18-hole match play on Friday narrow the field to four semifinalists, who compete in a pair of 18-hole matches on Saturday morning.
Winners of the two morning matches play in the 18-hole championship match Saturday afternoon.
About the Western Amateur
First conducted in 1899 at the Glen View Club in Golf, Illinois, the Western Amateur championship has from its inception been regarded as one of the world’s major amateur golf events. The Western Amateur’s 156-man field consistently ranks among the top three in the world along with the British Amateur and U.S. Amateur. Contestants come from all over the globe, including North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australia. For more information, visit www.thewesternamateur.com.
About Western Golf Association
The Western Golf Association conducts six national golf championships and sponsors the nationally acclaimed Evans Scholars Foundation. Headquartered in Glenview, Illinois, the organization was founded in 1899 by 11 Chicago-area golf clubs to promote their interests in golf. In addition to the BMW Championship on the PGA TOUR and the Evans Scholars Invitational on the Korn Ferry Tour, the WGA conducts four prestigious amateur championships, the Western Amateur, the Western Junior, and the Women’s Western Golf Association’s Amateur and Junior championships.
About the Evans Scholars Foundation
Established by famed amateur golfer Charles Chick Evans Jr. and the Western Golf Association, the Evans Scholars Foundation provides full housing and tuition scholarships to high-achieving caddies across the country. Currently, a record 1,010 caddies are enrolled in 18 universities across the nation as Evans Scholars. The Program, which is supported by the Western Golf Association, is funded by contributions from more than 32,500 Evans Scholars Par Club members, including Evans Scholars Alumni, as well as proceeds from the BMW Championship. Since the Program’s inception in 1930, more than 11,050 caddies nationwide have graduated as Evans Scholars.