Talk about the weirdest of coincidences.
On Sunday, Andover’s Rob Oppenheim inched basically to within whiskers of a PGA Tour Card, a quest that basically took a dozen years and started on a mini-circuit called the New England Pro Tour.
This morning about 30-40 young, aspiring professionals, looking to make the run that Oppenheim has, will tee it up at Bradford Country Club as the New England Pro Golf Tour makes its return.
“Basically, we have dedicated this tour to the memory of my father, Buddy Young,” said Chris Young, the Georgetown High School golf coach and director of this tour. “Right now, it’s a pretty good way for young, aspiring pros to make some money and carve their way through the pro ranks.
“A lot of area professionals have shown interest too. We started this in 2006, and we picked up a great sponsor this year in the North Shore Realty Group and we’re back after one year off.”
The late Buddy Young was the former Tournament Director of the N.E.P.G.A., South African PGA Tour, and the North Atlantic Golf Tour.
Tournament venues this summer include Ipswich Country Club, Haverhill Country Club, Ould Newbury Golf Course and Atkinson Country Club, while events are Black Swan and Ferncroft Country Club are in the works.
The tournaments are one-day events, cut in the style of Florida mini tours.
Pros will play for 88 percent of all the money collected after course fees. Amateurs can compete in both gross and net categories.
Past pro champs on this tour include Bradford’s Kevin Murphy and Atkinson’s Nick Antonelli.
“Guys have to start somewhere,” said Chris Young. “We look at this as golf at the Single-A level, like in baseball. Where the Web.com Tour is Triple-A, we’re like Single-A.”
For more information on these pro/am events, go online to www.newenglandgolftour.com.
HONDA NORTH JUNIOR TOUR RETURNS AGAIN
Young was looking to pass down one of the messages in golf. And that is one of community and philanthropy.
So the Georgetown High School coach came up with the idea of his Honda North Junior Golf Tour, which kicks off Tuesday, July 7, at Bradford Country Club.
The Honda North Tour visits some of the great North Shore course like Bradford, Ould Newbury Golf Club, Black Swan and Amesbury Country Club. New for this year is a trip to the Needham Country Club.
“I thought it was a pretty good idea to allow the kids to take a little responsibility to the community,” said Young, who commits a donation in the winner’s name to the charity specified at each tour stop.
For instance, Tuesday’s beneficiary at Bradford is the One Fund Boston.
The tournaments are nine-holes and are played in a point quota format.
Entry fee is $40, and it’s $30 for any Cape Ann League player or member of a Tour host club.
For more information, go to www.hondanorthjuniorgolftour.com.
HONDA NORTH JUNIOR TOUR 2015 SCHEDULE
July 7, at Bradford CC, to benefit One Fund Boston
July 13, at Amesbury GC, to benefit Pettengill House
July 14, at Ould Newbury GC, to benefit the Coach Mike Rowinski Scholarship Fund
July 15 at Needham Golf Club, to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society
August 3, at Black Swan CC to benefit Joslin Diabetes Center
August 4, at Bradford CC to benefit Easter Seals
August 17, at Amesbury GC to benefit March of Dimes
August 18, at Ould Newbury GC to benefit Childrens Hospital
August 20, at Bradford CC to benefit the Joe Healey Memorial Fund