Date: November 16, 2015
Author: PGA of Australia

Smith and young guns join PGA field

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The rising stars of the world of golf will soon hit the Gold Coast when the Australian PGA Championship tees off at RACV Royal Pines Resort in December.

Teeing it up in Australia’s richest golf tournament, the Australian PGA Championship, Australia’s hottest golfing talent Cameron Smith, New Zealand’s emerging star Ryan Fox as well as young gun Americans Harold Varner III and Peter Uihlein will all be aiming for the biggest win of their careers.

Queenslander Cameron Smith has taken the golfing world by storm this year, finishing tied fourth in his first major appearance at the US Open which also secured him an invite to The Masters next year as well as his 2016 PGA TOUR card.

“I am really looking forward to competing in the Australian PGA Championship in front of my friends and family,” said Smith.

“I have spent a lot of the year competing overseas and enjoyed every minute of the amazing opportunities I have been afforded but there is nothing better than returning home and finishing my season on the Gold Coast.”

“If I could end the season by winning my first Professional tournament, it would be even better.

Ryan Fox has also enjoyed a breakout year, forging a name for himself in Europe. The two time PGA Tour of Australasia winner capitalised on his opportunities competing on the European Challenge Tour, winning the Le Vaudreuill Golf Challenge as well as making the cut at The Open.

Fox came heartbreakingly close to securing a full card on the European Tour. He finished outside the top-15 players on the European Challenge Tour automatically granted cards by less than €2000.

However there are always other ways onto the main Tour and Fox is this week competing at the  final stage of European Tour Qualifying School.

“The experience I have gained competing in Europe has been fantastic. While it would have been good to already have my card sown up for next year, I am looking forward to playing the Australian PGA Championship as a European Tour co-sanctioned tournament,” said Fox, who knows a win on the Gold Coast would cement his status on the lucrative tour until the end of 2017.

“It’s an incredible opportunity to play a European Tour co-sanctioned tournament in Australia. Hopefully by December I will already have my card via Q-School but if I don’t, winning the Aussie PGA is another way of securing it.”

American Peter Uihlein will headline the young guns of the European Tour heading to Australia.

The former number one amateur in the world, Uihlein has already won on the European Tour at the Madeira Islands Open in 2013 with his 2015 season highlighted by four top-10 finishes.      

The Australian PGA Championship will be Uihlein’s second time competing in Australia after he finished in the top-10 at the 2014 Perth International.

“I loved playing in Perth last year so when I found out the European Tour was coming back to Australia I jumped at the chance to play.”

“I’m looking forward to playing on the newly re-designed course in such an iconic Australian location.”

Competing in Australia for the very first time is new PGA TOUR graduate Harold Varner III who in 2015 finished 25th on the Tour money list.

Renowned as a big hitter, Varner is sure to entertain fans at the Australian PGA Championship whilst also looking forward to experiencing golf down under.

“I have always heard good reports about the quality of Australian golf, there are a lot of Aussies competing on the Tour so I’m looking forward to seeing for myself everything they have been talking about,” said Varner.

The Australian PGA Championship will be played at RACV Royal Pines Resort from 3-6 December.