Patrick Reed, Billy Horschel Join Californians Brendan Steele, Kevin Na
In 2016 CareerBuilder Challenge Field
The 2014 event champion and 2014 FedEx Cup champion are two of nine top-50-ranked players committed to Jan. 18-24 event
LA QUINTA, Calif. – Patrick Reed, who set a PGA TOUR record for lowest 54-hole score with his three consecutive 63s en route to winning in the desert two years ago, and 2014 FedExCup champion Billy Horschel are two of the latest players committing to the CareerBuilder Challenge in partnership with the Clinton Foundation.
Joining Reed and Horschel among many of the best players in the world for the Jan 18-24 event are Southern Californians Brendan Steele (Idyllwild) and Kevin Na, who grew up in Diamond Bar and played many events in the Coachella Valley as one of the top junior golfers in the country.
Reed, who is ranked 10th in the Official World Golf Rankings, Na (23rd) and Horschel (41st), give the CareerBuilder Challenge three more players currently ranked in the top 50. They join Paul Casey (22nd), Marc Leishman (25th), Phil Mickelson (36th), Robert Streb (39th), Anirban Lahiri (40th) and defending champion Bill Haas (43rd).
Those nine, along with Steele, will compete on two new courses: the TPC Stadium and Jack Nicklaus Tournament Courses at PGA WEST, which join longtime tournament mainstay La Quinta Country Club. Official rounds for the event, which features a $5.8 million purse. are scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 21 through Sunday, Jan. 24.
“As we saw two years ago, Patrick Reed is capable of overpowering a course in spectacular and record-breaking fashion,” said Tournament Director Bill Tait. “He is one of the most exciting players in the world and our tournament is glad to welcome him back. Billy Horschel, meanwhile, is one of those players who combines electric play with a wonderful, fan-friendly personality that promises to connect with our fans.
“We take a lot of pride in welcoming back Brendan Steele and Kevin Na, who have always been good friends to the tournament and who come with their built-in rooting sections.”
Reed arrives with built-in confidence, having made 25-of-27 cuts in 2015. He began the calendar year by winning the Hyundai Tournament of Champions to become the fourth player to win four times before turning 25 – joining a rarefied group of players that includes Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods, Sergio Garcia and Rory McIlroy (Jordan Spieth joined that group later that year). No golfer is more consistent and few are as driven as the player who went wire-to-wire in the event formerly known as the Humana Challenge in 2014 – courtesy of those three 63s.
“The good thing with me is I’m never satisfied,” Reed told PGATOUR.com. “When I shot three 63s in a row, everyone thought it was the greatest thing that ever happened. I wasn’t satisfied. I could go through each round, and pick out shots I didn’t make. Those are the things that stick in my mind. That keeps me from letting up.”
The fiery and outgoing Horschel displays similar passion for the game as well as a love of the pro-am format. He said he relishes the three-day pro-am because chatting with amateurs clears his mind and lets him enjoy the game better. And he gets to enjoy it on courses he looks forward to playing.
“The course conditions that week are, by far, the best that we play all year,” Horschel said. “There’s not one spot of grass out of place. The greens roll true. I love La Quinta Country Club. It’s an old-school golf course, not overly long. Just put it in the right spots and you can score well.
“Now we’re going to the Stadium Course and the Nicklaus Tournament, two courses that I’ve played during Q-School that I think are really good, and are actually going to make it an even better tournament because I think those courses are tougher. Those courses, especially that Stadium, you get a little wind blowing in there and you better watch out coming in.”
Steele is another fan of the event, although his love of the event comes with a local twist. The Idyllwild native and UC Riverside graduate played many a tournament in the Coachella Valley and spent many a day watching players at the event formerly known as the Bob Hope Classic. Last year, Steele was one of the contenders coming down the stretch, before finishing T2 – his best finish of the season en route to $1.75 million year. This season, he has already notched a third-place finish at the CIMB Classic in November.
Na, a former No. 1-ranked junior player who turned pro at 17, made 23-of-27 cuts last year, with seven top-10s and more than $2.8 million in earnings. He has steadily climbed the world rankings and enters 2016 as one of the hottest golfers on the PGA TOUR, with two runner-up finishes and a third in his last three events. He is sixth in FedExCup points.
Tickets to see all of these stars up close are available at www.CareerBuilderChallenge.com, where limited-time specials on daily and all-week grounds badges are still available.
As the global leader in human capital solutions, CareerBuilder specializes in cutting-edge HR software as a service to help companies with every step of the recruitment process from acquire to hire. CareerBuilder works with top employers across industries, providing job distribution, sourcing, workflow, CRM, data and analytics in one pre-hire platform. It also operates leading job sites around the world. Owned by TEGNA Inc. (NYSE:TGNA), Tribune Media (NYSE:TRCO) and The McClatchy Company (NYSE:MNI), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, South America, Canada and Asia. For more information, visit www.careerbuilder.com.
About the Clinton Foundation
The Clinton Foundation convenes businesses, governments, NGOs, and individuals to improve global health and wellness, increase opportunity for girls and women, reduce childhood obesity, create economic opportunity and growth, and help communities address the effects of climate change. Because of our work, more than 30,000 American schools are providing kids with healthy food choices in an effort to eradicate childhood obesity; more than 85,000 farmers in Malawi, Rwanda, and Tanzania are benefiting from climate-smart agronomic training, higher yields, and increased market access; more than 33,500 tons of greenhouse gas emissions are being reduced annually across the United States; over 400,000 people have been impacted through market opportunities created by social enterprises in Latin America, the Caribbean, and South Asia; through the independent Clinton Health Access Initiative, 9.9 million people in more than 70 countries have access to CHAI-negotiated prices for HIV/AIDS medications; 85 million people in the U.S. will be reached through strategic health partnerships developed across industry sectors at both the local and national level; and members of the Clinton Global Initiative community have made more than 3,400 Commitments to Action, which have improved the lives of over 430 million people in more than 180 countries.
Learn more at http://www.clintonfoundation.org, on Facebook at Facebook.com/ClintonFoundation and on Twitter @ClintonFdn.
About Desert Classic Charities
Since its inception, Desert Classic Charities, the charitable entity that organizes the PGA TOUR event in the Coachella Valley, has contributed more than $56 million to a wide range of Coachella Valley charitable organizations and Eisenhower Medical Center.
The scope of giving is broad and includes support for structured and mentoring programs for children, social services, and food and safe shelter for the less fortunate. Desert Classic Charities is dedicated to continuing its mission to serve human needs in the Coachella Valley and beyond by generating funds and opportunities every year through the event.
About PGA TOUR
The PGA TOUR is the world’s premier membership organization for touring professional golfers, co-sanctioning more than 130 tournaments on the PGA TOUR, Champions Tour, Web.com Tour, PGA TOUR Latinoamérica, Mackenzie Tour-PGA TOUR Canada and PGA TOUR China.
The PGA TOUR’s mission is to entertain and inspire its fans, deliver substantial value to its partners, create outlets for volunteers to give back, generate significant charitable and economic impact in the communities in which it plays, and provide financial opportunities for TOUR players.
Worldwide, PGA TOUR tournaments are broadcast to more than 1 billion households in 226 countries and territories in 32 languages. Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations in order to maximize charitable giving. In 2014, tournaments across all Tours generated a record $140.5 million for local and national charitable organizations, after surpassing $2 billion in all-time charitable contributions early in the year.
The PGA TOUR’s web site is PGATOUR.COM, the No. 1 site in golf, and the organization is headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.