Futher support for new look NZ Open
01 Oct 2013
The 2014 NZ Golf Open has been given a funding injection of $100,000 as part of the Queenstown Lakes District Council’s Events Strategy grants.
The strategy, which enables the council to facilitate, support and grow events in the district, named the tournament as a beneficiary in the latest funding round announced late last week.
The NZ Open tournament, morphed from the revamped New Zealand PGA Championship and a tier one event on the PGA Tour of Australasia, will be held from February 27 to March 2, 2014 at The Hills Golf Course and Millbrook Golf Resort in Arrowtown.
The NZ Open will include a unique pro-am format played concurrently with the professional tournament, following the principles established for the 2013 NZPGA Championship, although with a variation on that theme. The amateurs will now play with the professionals over the opening two rounds at both The Hills and Millbrook at which point a limited amount of teams make it to the weekend.
Joining The Hills as a co-host for the 2014 New Zealand Open is Millbrook Golf Resort.
“We’re delighted to receive this endorsement and support of the New Zealand Open, and this much-needed funding from QLDC’s Events Strategy fund would enable the event to be taken to another level,” said Tournament Chairman John Hart.
“The NZ Open will become an iconic sporting event in NZ. Central Government and local Government funding is fundamental to us growing this event into one of the pre-eminent sporting events in this country.
“We’ve already shown what a positive effect the event has on the local economy, attracting large crowds and incorporating a number of events on-and-off the course. There’s something for everyone.
“We’re stepping things up a level again this year with the inclusion of Millbrook Resort as a second host course, which enables us to increase the number of participants.”
The NZ Government, through its Major Events Development Fund has recently announced an investment of $900,000 for the 2014 event.
Tournament organisers are currently approaching professional and celebrity players to participate in the tournament with announcements to be made closer to the event.
Past celebrity players have included Sir Ian Botham, Hollywood actor Don Cheadle, Lydia Ko and a number of sporting icons from Australia and New Zealand, while high class professionals who have fought for top positions include Brendan Jones, Michael Hendry, Toshi Muto and Mark Brown.