Viktor Hovland enters Zurich Classic with his former Oklahoma State teammate Kris Ventura
NEW ORLEANS — Viktor Hovland, a two-time winner in little more than a year on the PGA Tour, will pair with his former Oklahoma State Cowboy teammate and fellow Norwegian Kris Ventura in this year’s Zurich Classic of New Orleans, announced Steve Worthy, CEO of the Fore!Kids Foundation, producer of the tournament.
“Viktor’s achievements on the PGA Tour are remarkable in such a short period. He earned his Tour card only a year after turning pro and just months after winning the U.S. Amateur,” said Worthy. “Kris earned his PGA Tour card through outstanding play on the Korn Ferry Tour and has posted two top-10 finishes this season. We welcome them both in their debut at the Zurich Classic,” Worthy added.
Hovland, born and raised in Oslo, Norway, was the first Norwegian golfer to win the
U.S. Amateur and the first Norwegian to compete in the Masters the following year. He earned low amateur honors at both the Masters with a tie for 32nd and the U.S. Open, where he finished tied for 12th.
He scored his first PGA Tour victory at the 2020 Puerto Rico Open at 22 years old. He also finished third in the Workday Charity Open and was one of only two rookies that season to make the Tour Championship, where he finished 20th.
He went on to win the Mayakoba Golf Classic in December, then fired up a hot streak early in 2021. In three consecutive tournaments, he tied for second in the Farmers Insurance Open, tied for fifth in the Genesis Invitational and tied for second in the WGC-Workday Championship.
He has made the cut in all four majors he has played, with a tie for 12th and a tie for 13th in the U.S. Open. In only 42 starts on the PGA Tour, he has totaled 21 top-25 and eight top-10 finishes.
He currently ranks 14th in the world and fourth in FedExCup points this season.
Hovland played on the Arnold Palmer Cup team in 2017 and 2018 and won the Eisenhower Trophy for amateurs in 2016 and 2018.
In his three seasons at Oklahoma State, he was a two-time first-team All-American and three-time first-team All-Big 12 selection. After his junior year, he was named Big 12 Player of the Year, won the Ben Hogan Award and reached the number one spot in the World Amateur Golf Ranking.
Hovland’s teammate Kris Ventura was born in Mexico but raised in Norway. He earned his PGA Tour card after winning twice in 11 stats on the 2019 Korn Ferry Tour.
So far this season, he has recorded a tie for sixth and a tie for seventh as his best finishes. In the interrupted 2020 season he posted three top-25 finishes in his rookie year on the PGA Tour.
He overcame serious adversity to earn his Tour card. In November 2018, he had to undergo an emergency appendectomy just before the final stage of the Korn Ferry Tour Qualifying Tournament.
He played the tournament anyway, despite not begin able to swing 100 per cent. He finished near the bottom of the event and entered the 2019 Korn Ferry Tour season with minimal status and playing privileges. He overcame the low ranking and won the Utah Championship and the Pinnacle Bank Championship in 2019 that propelled him to a full PGA Tour card the next season.
Born in Mexico, he moved to Norway when he was 12 years old. He was a member of the 2018 NCAA National Championship team at Oklahoma State. That team included his Zurich Classic partner Hovland and Matthew Wolff, who will be playing the Zurich Classic with Collin Morikawa.
Ventura played on the 2012 and 2016 Eisenhower Trophy teams and competed for Europe in the 2017 Palmer Cup.
The Zurich Classic field so far includes half of the top 10 ranked players in the world.
Hovland and Bauchou join several high profile teams previously announced to play the 2021 Zurich Classic including:
· Defending champion Jon Rahm, ranked 3rd in the world, with Ryan Palmer, ranked 26th.
· Collin Morikawa, ranked 4th in the world, with Matthew Wolff, ranked 23rd.
· Xander Schauffele, ranked 6th in the world, with Patrick Cantlay, ranked 10th.
· Tyrrell Hatton, ranked 8th in the world, with fellow Englishman and former Master winner Danny Willett.
· Billy Horschel, ranked 17th in the world, with former LSU All-American Sam Burns.
· Tony Finau, ranked 13th in the world with Cameron Champ.
The Zurich Classic is the only team tournament on the PGA TOUR season. Since launching the team format in 2017, the Zurich Classic of New Orleans has drawn some of the highest ranking fields for any regular-season tournament on the PGA TOUR.
About Fore!Kids Foundation:
Since 1958, the Fore!Kids Foundation has raised money to fund children’s service organizations through golf events like the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, The Holiday Auction Fore!Kids and several charitable golf tournaments. As a 501(c)(3) corporation, Fore!Kids has helped to raise more than $40 million to date for children’s charities in metro New Orleans and Baton Rouge. More information at http://www.forekidsfoundation.com.
Despite the cancellation of the 2020 tournament, Zurich Insurance donated funds to the Fore!Kids Foundation to make $1.5 million in contributions to area non-profits, the same amount as the year before.
About the Zurich Classic of New Orleans:
Televised in more than 224 countries and territories, the Zurich Classic of New Orleans generates a significant economic impact on the city of New Orleans and the entire state of Louisiana. Independent research has shown that the tournament generates spending of more than $40 million within the local economy and garners $33 million in positive national and international media exposure for both the city and state throughout the year beyond the four days of competition.
The tournament will be played April 19-25, 2021 at TPC Louisiana in Avondale. Purse for 2021 totals $7.4 million, with each member of the winning team earning $1,069,300.
Day-specific grounds tickets are only $35. In addition, the Best of the Zurich Class Pass offers a variety of dishes from some of New Orleans most famous restaurants at four locations across the TPC course. Additional ticket options are available by calling the Tournament Office at 504-342-3000 or online at www.zurichgolfclassic.com.
- < PREV 2021 NFL Mock Draft First Round 1.0
- NEXT > Baseball -- Lamar-Northwestern State opener postponed by weather