THE PLAYERS HOT SHEET
A quick guide to everything you need to know about THE PLAYERS 2018
1. Across the pond and into the field.
ICYMI: Sweden’s Henrik Stenson and England’s Ian Poulter have officially committed to THE PLAYERS 2018! The international duo finished 1-2, respectively, at THE PLAYERS in 2009, so they’re effectively inseparable. #bestbuds
Stenson won by four strokes over Poulter in 2009 to earn his second PGA TOUR victory (he now has six) and become the first player from Sweden to win THE PLAYERS. Poulter, who recently notched his third PGA TOUR victory at the 2018 Houston Open, looks to become the first player from England to win THE PLAYERS. Hey, there’s a new royal baby and a royal wedding coming up, so why not add another photo to Queen Elizabeth’s mantle of Poulter hoisting the Waterford Crystal trophy?
2. The key to raising golf’s next star is…
If we knew the one key, we wouldn’t tell you! Just kidding. But we do know one thing, and we’re proud to share it: The First Tee is doing an incredible job raising not just the next generation of golfers but world-class citizens. This national youth sports organization has not one, but nine keys—or core values, as they call them—they use to teach kids the game of golf and set them up for success, on and off the course.
Just this morning, The First Tee announced the debut of The First Tee Experience at THE PLAYERS (click here for CEO Keith Dawkins’ appearance on Morning Drive and click here for the press release), a 5,000-square-foot, air-conditioned venue which will provide a unique, interactive golf experience for kids and families within The McKenzie Noelle Wilson Foundation Kid Zone. The First Tee Experience will feature golf-themed games, social media and interactive activities. Kids can show off their skills, practice their trick shots and participate in scaled versions of The First Tee’s signature programs currently offered in schools, at youth centers and at golf facilities around the country and the world.
Highlights include: The First Tee’s par-3 Mini-Golf Challenge, an interactive Nine Core Values golf tee wall, a virtual reality gaming station, The First Tee golf simulator from aboutGolf, a live interactive art installation by renowned artist Bryan Blue (Blue the Great), digital photo booths and a recharge lounge for adults to watch the live feed of THE PLAYERS. The First Tee volunteers will don custom t-shirts by Super Bowl champion and former NFL All-Pro Martellus Bennett, founder of The Imagination Agency, a multimedia production company that creates children’s content. Additionally, The First Tee Experience will provide information about The First Tee and ways for fans to connect with a chapter in their hometown. Who knows? Your kid could grow up to be a future champion of THE PLAYERS.
3. The world is watching. No pressure.
In 13 days, the world’s best golfers will tee it up at TPC Sawgrass in hopes of being crowned the next champion of THE PLAYERS. While you (and the players, of course!) mentally prepare for the drama and excitement about to unfold on the Stadium Course, just know that THE PLAYERS team is hard at work to make sure we consistently deliver this tournament as a showcase of excellence. No grain of grass will be out of place! Why? Because fans all across the world will be tuning in to watch THE PLAYERS!!! Don’t believe us? These numbers don’t lie:
- 1 billion households and 226 countries and territories will receive the tournament broadcast in 23 different languages
- 17 different international broadcast partners will be on-site this year
- 8 of these broadcast partners will completely rebrand their channels and dedicate their coverage to THE PLAYERS, including the UK’s Sky Sports, who will be tracking Ian Poulter’s every move as he looks to become the first Englishman to hoist the Waterford Crystal Trophy. Like we said, no pressure.
4. Golden Moments: Nick Price (1993)
25 years ago, Zimbabwean Nick Price was on the cusp of becoming the No. 1 player in the world. A win at THE PLAYERS would go a long way to help that cause; however, on the short-but-demanding par-4 4th hole, Price’s tee shot came to rest on the lip of a fairway bunker. With one foot in the bunker, Price took a baseball swing and hit the ball within a foot for a tap-in birdie, which he later described as “the greatest shot of my life.”
“I couldn’t have played any better,” Price said after turning in trips of 64-68-72-67 for a tournament-record 18-under 270 (which Greg Norman ended up breaking in 1994) and a five-stroke win over Bernhard Langer. “I just felt so good out there.” Price won three more times that season en route to being crowned Player of the Year.
5. One more thing before you go…
Assuming you’ve already purchased your tickets, don’t forget your parking pass! Passes must be printed out ahead of time! On Tuesday and Wednesday, as in previous years, fans can still park for FREE in the general parking lot and no parking pass is required. Thursday-Sunday, however, fans are required to purchase parking in advance ($30 Thursday and Sunday per day for general parking; and $35 Friday and Saturday per day in general parking). Parking passes can be purchased here.
“Four for Free” policy: Fans with four or more guests in a vehicle can park for FREE Thursday through Sunday with the “Four for Free” parking voucher. Fans can click here to download the voucher, which allows free parking in the general lot off of CR210. A new voucher must be downloaded and printed for each day.