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Where When How October 1994 : Page 1

Provo Golf Club Hosts 1st Amateur Open Tournament

THE LUSH GREENS AND FAIRWAYS of the Turks and Caicos Islands only golf club will soon see competition play unlike any yet witnessed on the course. Early this month an international field of 125 golfers will tee off in the Provo Golf Club's first major championship - the Turks and Caicos Amateur Open. Sponsored by Coopers & Lybrand, the 36 hole, stroke play event and its $10,000 in prizes is expected to lure players from throughout the northern hemisphere.<br /> <br /> "We've certainly been spreading the word about the golf course," says club professional Peter Boyce. "Six thousand mailers have gone out to every club in the Caribbean, to numerous golf clubs in Canada and Europe and I know the Ramada has advertised the Amateur Open to every golf club in Florida. We've had enquires from all over - from Europe, Bermuda, Curacao, Puerto Rico, Barbados as well as from players in Canada and the U.S. <br /> <br /> "There is considerable interest in the open - from people who have just heard about the course and want to play somewhere new - and from those who are interested in playing the course again now that it has matured."<br /> <br /> The two year old, par 72 course has received rave reviews from visiting players - most recently from the President of the Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa Oklahoma which earlier this year hosted the PGA championship. In a letter to Boyce, country club president Larry C. Houchin described the Provo course as "by far the most challenging and best manicured (of any) I have ever played in the Caribbean." And two time visitor to Providenciales, 1992 US Senior Open Champion, Larry Laoretti said the 6529 yard course was "the perfect resort course."<br /> <br /> Designed by Karl Litten, the Provo course features tight fairways, unrelenting water hazards, menacing bunkers, large sandy waste areas and a majestic clubhouse. It is a "target" course that demands accuracy.<br /> <br /> Boyce says the course provides a formidable test for golfers of all levels. "If I was preparing for this month's championship - I'd be concentrating on hitting low accurate shots rather than going for distance - because the trade winds are likely to be blowing. The lower you keep that ball around here the better."<br /> <br /> The three day event tees off with a practice round and cocktail party on October 7 and is open to any golfer with a handicap of 40 or less. The field will be split into four handicap flights and women's division. Gross and net prizes for 18 and 36 holes and a same club team prize for players will be awarded.<br /> <br /> And should players score the "first" hole-in-one on any of the four par 3's on the course, they could take home a very special prize. For scoring the first hole-in-one on #4 a Hilton golf vacation will be awarded AND Hugh O'Neill & Co. Will present $50,000. For an "ace" on #8 a portable telephone is the prize. For a hole-in-one on #15 a set of golf clubs and "acing" # 1 7 will have the player driving away in a new Suzuki van.<br /> <br /> "In two years, seven holes in one have been hit on this course - so with the host of good players we are expecting for the open, we may well see another," says Boyce. So far the course has seen two "aces" on #8 and five on #15, with none on #4 or #17.<br /> <br /> "I'm expecting we'll see the best golf played on this course and some great competition during the open but the emphasis is on people having a good time." A gala banquet is planned as well as a second cocktail party.<br /> <br /> A number of Providenciales' fine hotels have discounted their rates for players and families. Also aiding in the sponsorship is Cookie Kellar of Carib West who with the help of Heineken will be offering the competitors special prizes. Thanks must be given to the many local firms that are sponsoring the tees. They include Architerra Consultants Ltd., Barclays Bank, BCQS Ltd., Bordier Bank and Trust, Claymore Insurance Management, Harvey Olsen Construction, Hugh O'Neill, Johnson International, LeDeck Hotel, Miller and Simons, Misick and Stanbrook, Norpro Ltd., Rainbow Motors, Ramada Turquoise Reef Resort and Casino, John Adler and Scotiabank, The Chartered Trust Company Ltd., The General Store, Turks Block and Quarry, Ward Construction, United Reliance Insurance. Special mention goes to American Airlines who reduced fares for all competitors and their families. Without the help of the sponsors, the event couldn't be organized.<br /> <br /> Information about Provo's golf course and the Coopers and Lybrand Amateur Open is available from Peter Boyce, telephone 809-94-65991, or fax 809-94-65992. <br /> <br /> By Carol Stiles

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