The 7th Annual 2013 Friendship Cup was contested at the Kiawah Island Golf Resort March 1st and 2nd on Pete Dye's world-famous Ocean Course and the Jack Nicklaus designed Turtle Point.
One first year attendee shared, "The Friendship Cup will begin the golf year for my friends and me from now on! I look forward to coming back next year to compete with all the great people I met on our maiden voyage to the "Cup" weekend. You cannot beat the Southern Hospitality you get at this wonderful island showcase."
The tournament boasted a record high attendance of 86 two-man teams this year. Tournament Chairman Tom Bewley says, "We are finally where we want to be with this tournament. Our goal was for it to become one of the country's premier amateur events and it has. We want to keep it intimate and exclusive and plan to limit 2014 to no more than 100 teams." The field of contenders is split between the two courses each day and the tournament is done with tee times rather than a shotgun format so everyone plays the courses as they are meant to be played for the best experience.
While the golf tournament is certainly a key component to the weekend, the "friendship" part of The Friendship Cup really happens off the course each evening. Attendees dine together each night at different themed events and continue the fellowship at the nightly hospitality suite. Hospitality suite favorites are the Full Swing Golf simulator, putting contest, cornhole tournament and foosball.
This year, the Thursday night kick-off dinner was once again at the popular Mingo Point site overlooking the magical Kiawah River. A bonfire, tunes from the Travis Allison Band, and the smell of roasted oysters, fire-grilled steaks and pit BBQ welcomed the crowd. As the night went on, each guest was encouraged to choose a pair of Sundog sunglasses as part of their weekend amenity package and Puros Reynoso was on hand offering samples of their finest Dominican cigars.
The amenity bag is always a big hit and this year did not disappoint with a Ralph Lauren polo, pair of FootJoy custom golf shoes, Ahead hat, plush golf towel from Harbor Linen, 2 sleeves of Titleist golf balls, Back Nine head covers, FootJoy socks, fine Dominican cigars from Puros Reynoso, and lots of spa goodies. The resort partners with many sponsors to make the event an exceptional value. From a four year attendee, "By far the best golf event weekend of the year. Amazing golf, great hospitality and the best value there is in the world of golf."
Friday evening after play, all past champions were honored going back to 2007, and the 2012 champions were presented their coveted navy blazers and welcomed into the Friendship Cup Hall of Fame. Attendees enjoyed a "Taste of Kiawah" themed dinner highlighting the resorts' varied restaurants. Each course was paired with a complimenting beer courtesy of Southern Eagle Distributing.
As the tournament came to a close Saturday afternoon, officials from VPAR live scoring tallied the highly anticipated results. Once again, all gathered in the Grand Ballroom at The Sanctuary Hotel for the final awards dinner. Another first year attendee summed it up by sharing," The Friendship Cup is an epic experience at an exceptional venue. The combination of playing on a "Majors" golf course and sharing good food and drink with great friends locks this in as an annual event!" Past attendees were honored with commemorative plates with The Ocean Course Clubhouse pictured and dined above the crowd on risers at the head tables.
|1st||Bushwood Ballers||130||Michael Iwanicki||Chuck Kalenowski|
|2nd||Hope to Finish||136||Randy Jones||Tom Crosby|
|3rd||Hotty Toddy||138||David Sinclair||Wayne Whitley|
|4th||Cash-N-Out||139||Jamie Anderson||Doug Dohner|
|5th||Agreeably Childish Behavior||140||Brett Sterba||Daron Pope|
|6th||Striking Linkers||141||Richard Grindon||Hugh Morrison|
|7th||I'd Sink That III||142||Bill Thomas||Clay Setzer|
|8th||Lincoln's Beard||142||Rob Beattie||Jim Costello|
|9th||Team Ham & Egg||142||John Haskins||Matthew Loney|
|10th||Red Beans & Rice||143||Jonathan Lee||Shannon Spillman|
|1st||Golf Digest||62||Jason Adel||Rick Hall|