December 12, 2008–The Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge has made its home on Las Vegas golf courses for more than a decade, but this year, for the first time, the event was played at Las Vegas golf course Rio Secco Golf Club. On December 13-14, the event will be televised on ABC. The event was played in November, and featured 9 of the world's best golfers playing one of the best Las Vegas golf courses. And commentator Andy North says the players took it seriously.
"Anytime players tee it up, they want to do well, even in a fun event like this," says North, who has covered several Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge tournaments. "Once they get into it, the competitive juices will start flowing. The players will get upset if they miss a shot, and since this is a team competition, they don't want to let their teammates down. That team element is what makes this event very interesting."
Rio Secco Golf Club is one of three Las Vegas golf courses operated by Harrah's Golf, and is open for resort play. The 18 holes that overlook the Las Vegas valley were designed by the esteemed Rees Jones. The other Las Vegas golf courses are Cascata, also designed by Jones, and Las Vegas National Golf Club, one of the most historic Las Vegas golf courses. Or call 866-941-7703 for personalized service. Besides hosting the 2008 Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge, Rio Secco Golf Club is also home to the Butch Harmon School of Golf, and golf events surrounding Tiger Jam, a benefit event for the Tiger Woods Foundation.
The Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge pits three-player teams from the LPGA Tour, PGA Tour and Champions Tour against each other in a team competition. In 2008, the LPGA Tour is represented by Natalie Gulbis, Helen Alfredsson, and Christie Kerr, while the PGA Tour is represented by Kenny Perry, Rocco Mediate, and Stewart Cink. The Champions Tour is represented by Nick Price, Fred Funk, and Jay Haas. The LPGA Tour team won the event in 2008, led by Gulbis, a resident of Lake Las Vegas Resort, where the tournament was played last year. The event is televised by ABC on Saturday, December 13, and Sunday, December 14, so check your local listings for times when you can view the action from fabulous Las Vegas.
Course set-up is key to the success of the Wendy's 3-Tour Challenge. The tee areas are staggered for each tour, and tournament organizers work hard to ensure that each player from each tour is hitting a similar club on approach shots. "They always do a good job in setting up how the course is played," says North. "And if you look at the history of the tournament, each tour has done pretty well so it's always tough to pick a favorite before the event. And this year is the same. You would think that the PGA Tour would have an advantage because of the length of Perry and Cink, but each of the Champions Tour players have had great years. And the LPGA Tour has amazing players, and Natalie knows this course better than anyone so that is probably an advantage."