The world’s greatest golfers will be joined by some of the biggest names in sport and show business on Wednesday 21 May, when the BMW PGA Championship stages its prestigious celebrity Pro-Am tournament on the iconic West Course at Wentworth Club, Surrey.
Now firmly established as the official curtain raiser to the BMW PGA Championship, which is celebrating two special anniversaries in 2014 – the tournament’s 60th anniversary and BMW’s 10th tenth anniversary as title Partner – this year’s celebrity Pro-Am has attracted another stellar line-up of celebrities from the worlds of football, cricket, tennis, rugby, horse racing, rowing and entertainment.
Kicking off with the world of football, this year’s BMW PGA Championship Pro-Am boasts a world-class international line-up, including former England greats Jamie Redknapp, Matt Le Tissier, Glen Hoddle and Teddy Sheringham, as well as European legends Peter Schmeichel, David Ginola, Andriy Shevchenko, Gianfranco Zola, John Arne Riise and Daniele Massaro.
Sir Ian Botham, Alan Lamb, Brian Lara and Andrew Strauss will be leading the cricket contingent, while England captain Chris Robshaw will be joined on Wentworth’s glorious fairways by fellow rugby internationals Ben Foden, Mike Tindall, Keith Wood and 2003 Rugby World Cup winning coach, Sir Clive Woodward.
The sporting theme continues with Olympic medallist Eve Muirhead who, with a handicap of 2, will be laying down the gauntlet, along with fellow Olympians Sirs Steve Redgrave and Matthew Pinsent. Tennis greats Tim Henman and Greg Rusedski are also confirmed to play, as are 1996 Formula 1 World Champion Damon Hill, Tiff Needell , AP McCoy, Mick Fitzgerald and Carl Llewelyn who will all be swapping horsepower – of one form or another – for golf clubs.
The incredible list of celebrities will team up with The European Tour’s finest pros, including four-time Major Champion Ernie Els and US Open Champion Justin Rose, two-time Major Champion Rory McIlroy, Ryder Cup hero Ian Poulter, two-time runner-up Lee Westwood, Sergio Garcia and Race to Dubai winner Henrik Stenson.
Jamie Birkmyre, Championship Director of the BMW PGA Championship said: “With over 50 celebrities attending this year’s celebrity Pro-Am, we are delighted that the curtain raiser to the 2014 BMW PGA Championship has, once again, attracted some of the biggest names from the worlds of sport, music and television. It’s always a great day, not just for the players and celebrities, but also for the thousands of spectators who come along to watch them play in a relaxed, informal environment. It is a truly unique occasion that offers a superb blend of world class golf, sport and showbiz.”
Away from the world of sport, Keane frontman Tom Chaplin will be making his BMW PGA Pro-Am debut on 21 May, as will fellow musician and founding member of Genesis, Mike Rutherford. Adding a touch of glamour to the day’s play, former model Jodie Kidd will be showing the boys how it’s done.
From the world of showbiz, Strictly star Anton Du Beke will be dancing down the fairways, while Football Focus’ Dan Walker, newsreaders Mark Austin and Rishi Persad and presenters Andrew Cotter, Jeremy Kyle, Steve Rider and Rob Bonnet will all add to the TV line-up. Michelin star Chef Jason Atherton will also be cooking up a storm around the West Course at Wentworth.
Chris Evans will be joined in the Pro-Am by two winners from the BBC Children In Need Super Swing Auction, whose incredible generosity raised just under £200,000 for the charity. The winners will play in the Pro-Am with Chris, his Radio 2 Breakfast Show colleague Vassos Alexander, and pro-golfers Justin Rose and Graeme McDowell.
Justin Rose commented: “The BMW PGA Championship Pro-Am is the best of the year and it will be even better this year from my point of view being involved with Chris and Vassos on behalf of a wonderful cause in Children In Need.”
Advance tickets are selling fast on www.europeantour.com/tickets while hospitality packages, reserved grandstand seating at the 18th green and limited on-site parking are almost sold out. Children aged 16 and under will be admitted free of charge if accompanied by an adult ticket holder.
As in previous years, BMW Owners and Official Badge Holders will be able to park on site, while pre-paid parking on Wentworth Estate is now completely sold out. All other ticket holders – and spectators turning up on the day to purchase tickets on the gate – will need to utilise the popular Park and Ride service.
Introduced for the first time in 2013, the Park and Ride service will operate once again this year running from two locations - Broomhall Farm in Sunningdale, which will carry traffic from the South and East; and Ascot Racecourse, carrying traffic from the North and West. Both sites will be fully operational from Tuesday May 20 and will operate a free shuttle bus service to Wentworth Club every five minutes, with the journey time taking around ten minutes and allowing easy access to the Welcome Pavilion through the Championship Village.
For further information, or to book tickets, visit www.europeantour.com
Follow all the news on BMW golf activities on www.bmw-golfsport.com