Telus, the sponsor company of the Telus Skins golf charity event, and their partners, IMG – the international sports company that manages sponsorships and public relations for many of the world’s top name athletes and manages many major sporting events, and Intrawest, owners of the Raven Course at Lora Bay, held a press conference and media event today (Wednesday the 30th).
This year’s Skins event features 5 world-famous professional golfers – Canada’s Stephen Ames, Geoff Ogilvy (Australia), Colin Montgomerie (Scotland), Retief Goosen (South Africa) and John Daly (USA).
Colin Montgomerie joined the meeting by telephone conference call from Wales where his is competing in the European Tour Celtic Manor Open starting tomorrow. He answered questions for about 20 minutes. Off the top, ‘Monty’ somewhat apologetically explained that he has never been to Canada and that he is really looking forward to it. Well, I guess if one were to list places in Canada that would make a good first impression, the Collingwood/Blue Mountain area of the Georgian Triangle would be right up there. And the Raven Course, which has been crafted and maintained to world-class standards, will leave a lasting impression on him and the others. A comment from the floor that Stephen Ames had voiced the opinion that Colin Montgomerie is the favorite to take all the skins elicited the response “well he’s dead right, you know” from the Scot, who also acknowledged the large contingent of Canadians with Scottish heritage. Moderator Dave Haggith quipped that the very Scottish “Dam Pub” in Thornbury has set itself up as the official Colin Montgomerie headquarters for the event. Can’t see that the ‘Monty’ is going to pass that up, so if you’re a fan, as I am, it should be a good place to hang out in hopes of getting a glimpse of the Scottish golf star.
The beneficiary will be the Junior Diabetes Research Foundation. JDRF funds a major portion of all Type 1 diabetes research worldwide, more than any other nongovernmental source of funding. In 2006, JDRF provided $6.3 million to diabetes research in Canada, and is responsible for more than $1 billion in direct funding worldwide since it was founded. TELUS will sponsor a number of special charitable incentives during the event on Monday and Tuesday that will benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation: including a Hole-in-One donation of $1 Million if any of the 5 professionals gets a hole in one on a certain hole each day.
Following the press conference, about 50 golfers who registered were treated to 9 holes on the Raven – and what a treat it was. This course is really very ready to impress the 5 tour pros who will be playing the Telus Skins Event on June 18th and 19th. Their rounds will be preceded on the 17th by a pro-am tournament with pros other than the 5 skins competitors. Tickets for one or both days are available online at www.telusskins.com. See you there.
Brian MacDonald is a golf correspondent for http://www.mycollingwood.ca. He owns and operates MacDonald’s Golf Scotland which designs and manages custom golf vacations to Scotland, Ireland, “New Scotland” (Nova Scotia) and a dozen other international destinations. Golf Scotland is based in Dundee, Scotland. Brian and his wife Nancy live in Collingwood.