Watch the video below for a look back at the inaugural Mack Champ Invitational, including interviews with Cameron Champ, players, parents, and tournament volunteers.
In keeping with Mack Champ’s words of wisdom – “It’s not where you come from, it’s where you’re going” – Chevron has committed $50,000 to start a scholarship fund to benefit college-bound participants in the Mack Champ Invitational.
We will release more information soon about the application process.
Roman Solomon, a member of the class of 2025 from Sarasota, FL, won the boys division of the inaugural Mack Champ Invitational at Memorial Park Golf Course in Houston with an even-par total.
Solomon was remarkably consistent, shooting 72 both days with three birdies and three bogeys in both rounds. Ian Davis (class of 2022) from Howey in the Hills, FL, and Xavier Bighaus (class of 2021) from McKinney, TX, tied for second at three over par.
One of the most impressive rounds of the tournament came from 10-year-old Axel Monssoh, who won the 9- and 10-year-old division with a final round 68 for a total of two over par. Aadi Parmar from Selma, TX, won the boys 11- and 12-year-old division with a two-day total of seven over par.
Amari Avery finished three under par to win the girls division of the inaugural Mack Champ Invitational at Memorial Park Golf Course in Houston.
Avery, a high school junior from Riverside, CA, who has verbally committed to play her college golf at the University of Southern California, shot 2-under 70 on Sunday to edge Bailey Davis by a shot. Davis, a member of the class of 2021 from White Plains, MD, who will play her college golf at the University of Tennessee, shot 72-70 for a 2-under-par total.
Avery is also scheduled to play the Augusta National Women’s Open from March 31 to April 3.
Shyla Brown from Matthews, NC, made an incredible run that included a 7-under 29 on the front nine on Sunday. She finished in third place at two over.
Alexis Lamadrid of Phoenix (class of 2027) won the girls 11- and 12-year-old division with a two-day total of seven over par.
On Saturday, Cameron Champ fielded questions from Mack Champ Invitational players and talked about his practice routine, mental preparation, and some finer points of preparation for elite competition.
Champ conducted the clinic on the first hole of Memorial Park Golf Course after the first round of play. Glenn Weckerlin, chairman of the board for the Cameron Champ Foundation, served as MC for the event.
Champ hit some shots and said that he preferred to get his practice on the course, not the range. Ever since he was a junior player, he said, he has liked to work on his game on the course. “That’s how you learn how to score,” he said.
After hitting a few iron shots, Weckerlin asked the juniors what club they wanted to see Champ hit. Not surprisingly for one of the longest hitters in the game, requests for driver won in a landslide. Here’s a look at what they got to see.
On Friday night before the first round of the Mack Champ Invitational, Roland Martin hosted a conversation at the Omni Houston Hotel with Cameron Champ and Lee Elder, who tuned in from home via video conference.
Elder, who broke the color barrier at the Maters in 1975 and will be an honorary starter at Augusta National in 2021, talked about his time on tour, the challenges he faced, the camaraderie he felt with other black golfers of his era, the importance of setting goals for success, and much more. He really brought the house down, though, when Martin asked him about the money games that players of his era competed in to make ends meet.
Martin asked, “Lee, you were hustling folks out of money?”
Without missing a beat, Elder replied: “I wasn’t hustling nobody. They wanted to make a donation.”
Champ spoke about his path to becoming a PGA Tour pro, his current game and tournament routine, the importance of focusing on improving his game while also maintaining a rewarding personal life, his new wife and their love of animals, and his outside-of-golf passion – drag racing.
Jeff Champ, Cameron’s father and the co-founder of the Cameron Champ Foundation, kicked off the evening with advice for the assembled golf parents and also shared some memories about his father, Mack, and Cameron’s junior golf days. Glenn Weckerlin, chairman of the board for the Cameron Champ Foundation, spoke about the foundation’s work and plans for the future.
At the end of the night, Cameron Champ surprised the crowd by handing out new Nike sunglasses for all of the players.
Cameron Champ’s first Masters experience will be a featured storyline in a new documentary produced by Augusta National Golf Club that will premiere on ESPN on Tuesday, March 16, at 7 p.m. ET.
Titled “The One in November,” the film gives a behind-the-scenes look at the 2020 Masters and chronicles the preparation and experience of a variety of individuals in the days leading up to the Masters.
The documentary will re-air multiple times in advance of ESPN’s live coverage of the 85th Masters Tournament. ABC will also air the documentary on Saturday, April 3, at 4 p.m., and it will be available on ESPN+ and Masters.com beginning April 4 as well.
One player from the Mack Champ Invitational will earn a chance to play in the Symetra Tour’s Garden City Charity Classic in Garden City, KS, in April.
As part of the LPGA Tour’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and in celebration of Black History Month, the Symetra Tour is offering “MVP Invites” to three tournaments that showcase minority golfers. The Mack Champ Invitational will be the first and the National Women’s Collegiate Golf Championship will be the second. The third and final event will be announced in the weeks to come.
“We are incredibly excited and grateful for the Symetra Tour’s enthusiasm in supporting our mission with the establishment of the Symetra Tour MVP Invite,” Cameron Champ said. “Having the ability to award a player in our field with an exemption to compete in the Garden City Classic is huge. That will be a fantastic experience for one of these young players and could also lead them to many more opportunities, which is exactly what we’ve set out to accomplish with the Mack Champ Invitational – opening more doors for golfers of diverse backgrounds to have the chance to succeed in this great sport.”
The Mack Champ Invitational team hosted a pre-tournament Zoom meeting on Tuesday, March 9, at 8pm EST to review all tournament details and COVID-19 protocols. You can watch a video recording of the meeting here.