The Legends of Golf, Savannah's signature professional golfevent for more than a decade, officially has a new home.
The 2014 Legends will be played in Branson, Mo. under presenting sponsorship by Bass Pro Shops. The BigCedar Lodge Legends of Golf presented by Bass Pro Shops will be played on theBuffalo Ridge Course and include play on the par-3 Top of the Rocks Course,making it the first Champions Tour event to include official competition on apar-3 course.
PGA Tour Commissioner Tim Finchem, Missouri governor JayNixon and Kansas City native Tom Watson introduced the new home of the Legendstoday.
"The Legends of Golf and Champions Tour both share a historyof being innovative and engaging properties and that legacy will certainlycontinue here at Big Cedar Lodge with the introduction of a par-3 course inofficial competition,'' said Finchem. "If there was ever a par-3 course worthy ofPGA Tour tournament play, Top of the Rocks is it.''
In addition to par-3 play, the new Legends will includefour-ball and scramble formats.
"We have a tournament here that is unique,'' said Watson. "Itis unlike the regular medal stroke-play events we usually play. It's going tobe great to see the pros play some other formats than regular stroke play. We'rebringing a golf tournament here, but we're also bringing an element of fun.''
The two-man team event will be played June 2-8, meaning theevent that helped launch the Champions Tour will continue despite losing theonly title sponsor it had for 35 years last year.
The Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf had been played at TheClub at Savannah Harbor for 11 years, from 2003 until 2013.
Savannah was the fifth home the Legends had after the eventstarted in Austin, Texas in 1978. The 11-year run in Savannah was the longestit had been played anywhere.
Champions Tour player John Cook also attended today'sannouncement and was excited that one of the Champions Tour events wascontinuing despite what had seemed an uncertain future.
"When we were playing the Legends last year in Savannah, therewere rumblings that this wasn't going to happen anymore,'' said Cook. "LibertyMutual was moving on and there might not be a Legends anymore. (Champions Tourplayers) said ‘we can't let that happen. We've got to do everything possible tokeep it going.' This is one of the most important events out that we have. Wejust can't let it go away.''