The USGA is making good on a promise it issued four years ago. At the time, in 2017, the governing body of U.S. golf pledged to establish a championship for the adaptive golf community.
Then along came COVID-19 and its variants, which has thrown a wrench into a number of things, including the creation of a new championship. But a promise is a promise, and with an announcement on Friday, The USGA finally made good.
The association announced the inaugural playing the U.S. Adaptive Open Championship will take place on July 18-20, 2022 at Pinehurst Resort and Country Club in North Carolina.
The championship, which becomes the 15th in the USGA stable, will feature the world's best golfers with disabilities and be conducted on Pinehurst’s No. 6 course. The George Fazio design is one of nine courses at the resort, and will play host to the championship in 2023, as well.
“Since 1895, our championships have provided the world’s best players with an opportunity to showcase their skills on a global stage, compete for a national championship and achieve their dreams,” said John Bodenhamer, USGA senior managing director, championships.
“After years of planning and delays caused by the global pandemic, we are proud to bring that same opportunity to the adaptive golf community through this championship, and to do so at Pinehurst, our second home. We believe this effort will spur participation for golfers with disabilities and hope it inspires others in the industry to make the game and its competitions more welcoming to all.”
The U.S. Adaptive Open will be a 54-hole, stroke-play format, and include a field of 96 players. The championship will be open to males and females, professional or amateur, with either physical impairment, sensory impairment or intellectual impairment. A WR4GD Pass and authorized World Handicap System index will be required.
Further eligibility specifics, field composition and other details concerning the competition and format details will be announced at a later date. In the meantime, Pinehurst president Tom Pashley said the resort is excited to be the home for the inclusive new event.
“We’re honored to serve as the site of the inaugural U.S. Adaptive Open Championship,” said Pashley. “Pinehurst has been home to many storied championships throughout our history, but to witness adaptive golfers competing for this new national championship will surely be among the most memorable. We are grateful to the USGA and the adaptive golf community for this opportunity.”