Testing Times For Trainee Golf Pros

Trainee Mitchell Newport (Supplied)
Mitchell Newport (Photo: Luke Leesburg @lukeleesburg)

Trainee Golf Professionals from all over New Zealand are facing their biggest challenge of the year this weekend by competing in the 2020 Titleist Footjoy Trainee Golf Championship.

Held at the Queenstown(Kelvin Heights) and Arrowtown Clubs the prizemoney of $10,000 with $1,800 going to the winner is a great incentive for any trainees alongside the prospect of a place in the exclusive The Hills Pro-Am later in the month.

Two rounds will be played at Queenstown GC on Sunday and the final round on Monday at Arrowtown with the event culminating with a graduation celebration on Tuesday.

Mitchell Newport (The Hills), Luke Leesburg (Jack’s Point) and Quinton Thompson (Queenstown GC) are some of the locals vying for the title with Newport especially looking forward to the competition.

“We are all excited about the added bonus where the winner will qualify for the 20th spot in The Hills Invitation ProAm on December 18 and 19 which has $50,000 prizemoney,” Newport said.

“It will make us a bit more nervous if we are in with a chance playing the last few holes at Arrowtown. It’s real cool having this on the line.”

Trainee Mitchell Newport (Supplied)
Trainee Mitchell Newport (Photo: Luke Lesburg @lukeleesburg)

The event which is compulsory for trainees is normally held in April but Covid-19 forced it to be moved to coincide with the graduation ceremony which is a celebration of their successes during the year.

NZPGA General Manager Dominic Sainsbury said it is a three-year course and about 12 trainees will receive full PGA membership.

“There will also be awards for the outstanding contribution throughout the year plus for community initiatives they have implemented in their local community,” Sainsbury said.

“Many of them are busy with disability and youth coaching, as well as the ‘She Loves Golf program.”

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