The series has evolved into six events through the ‘winter’ period on the Sunshine Tour, and this year, local professionals will be playing for R4.2-million, or R700,000 per tournament. The series finishes on November 5 at St Francis Links in the Eastern Cape.
In addition to the normal 54-hole Sunshine Tour winter tournament, there will be pro-ams on each of the two days leading up to the event, during which customers and clients of the sponsors will play with professionals. There is also plenty of after-hours entertainment for the guests before the pros get down to business.
The charity element of the series has long been an important part of it. This year, ‘Birdies for Babies’ will get R200 from Vodacom for every birdie made during the pro-ams and the tournament proper, and that amount will double in the final event at St Francis Links.
Three beneficiaries have been identified for this year’s series. The first is the Smile Foundation, which deals with facial disfigurement in children between the ages of five and 12. The second is the Laudium-based New Beginningz, which houses orphans and HIV positive children. There are 35 of them up to the age of five in the facility.
The final one is the Walter Sisulu Paediatric Cardiac Foundation, based in Cape Town’s Red Cross War Memorial Hospital. Its administrative headquarters are at Netcare Sunninghill Hospital, and they focus on delivering life-saving surgery for underprivileged children with heart disorders.