With the field for the 2009 Faldo Series Grand Final now confirmed, Nick Faldo is set to welcome 70 young golfers from 11 different countries to the iconic city of Rio de Janeiro, recently announced as the venue for the 2016 Olympic Games.
Supported by The R&A, the European Tour, Golf Corporate Brazil, the Secretary of State for Sport and Tourism of Rio de Janeiro and the Rio 2016 bid, the 54-hole R&A World Amateur Golf Ranking tournament will take place on 28-30 October at Rio’s Itanhanga Golf Club.
Faldo commented: “I congratulate Rio on its successful 2016 Olympic bid and I’m excited that we will be returning to Brazil this month for another Faldo Series Grand Final. We’ve seen for some time the potential in the region for development through sport and the timing could not be better for us to be bringing together golfers from around the world to a city that is right at the forefront of the world’s sporting agenda.
“I also strongly support the inclusion of golf in the 2016 Games and believe that being an Olympic sport can help make golf significantly more accessible, especially for future generations. In some small way that is what I am trying to achieve through the Faldo Series, both in South America and around the world.”
The 13th Grand Final will see young golfers from the UK, Ireland, Russia, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Brazil, Argentina and Paraguay compete to be crowned Faldo Series champion and follow in the footsteps of former winners Nick Dougherty, Rory McIlroy and Oliver Fisher. Five winners will be invited to the Faldo Series Asia Grand Final in China and the overall boy and girl champion will receive a start in a European Tour and Ladies European Tour event respectively.
Also supported by the CBG (the Brazilian Golf Confederation) and the Rio Golf Federation, this year’s Grand Final will feature one of the strongest fields in the tournament’s recent history, including: 2008 Curtis Cup star Carly Booth; English and British Boys Amateur Champion, Tom Lewis; Tom Shadbolt, the recently crowned Italian Amateur Champion; and Hannah Barwood, who returns to defend her title of Faldo Series Girls Champion.
In addition to events on the golf course, six-time Major winner Faldo will spend time with the competitors, boys and girls aged 12 to 21, to pass on his advice and experience from over 30 years of playing at the highest level. Other experts will also be educating the players through a unique series of player seminars.
The week’s schedule will also offer a number of grass-roots activities for local children. As part of Faldo’s drive to create access to the game and inspire a younger audience, participants from the Japeri project, an R&A-supported golf development initiative that works with local favela children, will be invited to meet Nick, receive free coaching and watch the competitors in action.