Chiangmai Golf Classic Added to Asian Tour Calendar

December 11, 2012

The inaugural Chiangmai Golf Classic will be launched in Thailand in March, capsule 2013 in another positive development which underscores the strength of the Asian Tour as it expands professional golf in the Kingdom and across the region, online officials announced today.

The full-field Asian Tour event will be held at the magnificent Alpine Golf Resort-Chiangmai, store which is situated in northern Thailand, from March 28-31 and offer a total prize fund of US$750,000.

Organizers will assemble a collection of international stars along with the region’s elite players led by Thai heroes Thongchai Jaidee and Thaworn Wiratchant to grace the Chiangmai Golf Classic.

In conjunction with IMG, who is the event promoter, Asia’s newest showpiece will be broadcast live over four days on the Asian Tour’s global television platform which reaches over 200 countries and 650 million homes. This will ensure the Alpine Golf Resort-Chiangmai and the picturesque city of Chiangmai, which the Asian Tour will visit for the first time, are beamed throughout the world.

The launch of Thailand’s newest tournament will raise the number of Asian Tour events in the country to four, which will boost Thai players’ aspirations to qualify for the Olympic Games in 2016 through the Official World Golf Ranking.

Asian Tour Executive Chairman Kyi Hla Han said the birth of the Chiangmai Golf  Classic was another strong endorsement from corporate Asia towards professional golf at the highest level in the region.

“We are delighted to announce the inclusion of the Chiangmai Golf Classic on our 2013 Schedule. I would like to thank Alpine Golf Resort-Chiangmai and IMG for delivering a new and exciting tournament in Thailand, which is one of our biggest partners in developing professional golf in Asia,” said Han.

“This will be our first visit to Chiangmai and we look forward to competing and entertaining fans at the Alpine Golf Resort-Chiangmai. The launch of a new event is fantastic and exciting for the Asian Tour and our players. It will have a positive effect on the game here and inject new impetus for many more great players to emerge from the Kingdom.”

Alpine Golf Group’s Udomsak Ngowsiri said: “On behalf of Alpine Golf Resort-Chiangmai, we are delighted to partner the Chiangmai Golf Classic as the host venue. It will be memorable to stage Chiangmai’s first Asian Tour tournament and we will leave no stones unturned to ensure the Chiangmai Golf Classic is launched successfully. The tournament will extensively promote Thailand and Chiangmai as a leading golfing destination through the global live television broadcasts.”

Thongchai, the only player to win three Asian Tour Order of Merit crowns, said: “The launch of the Chiangmai Golf Classic is a wonderful development for the game as it shows the growing strength of the Asian Tour which continues to create playing opportunities for Thai players and Asian Tour members. I am looking forward to playing in a new destination in Thailand which will promote the game further afield in our country.”

IMG Senior Vice President, Grant Slack, said: “We believe the Chiangmai Golf Classic will positively impact the landscape of golf in Thailand and Asia, as achieved by other major events which IMG are involved in such as last week’s very successful Thailand Golf Championship on the Asian Tour and the long-running Honda LPGA.

“IMG is proud to add another Asian Tour event in a new and very beautiful area of Thailand and to be able to provide further playing opportunities for golfers in the region.

“Sponsors continue to support the game at the highest level in Asia via the Asian Tour. Through Asian Tour Media, which will produce the live television broadcasts, the Chiangmai Golf Classic will be beamed to every corner of the world which will place Chiangmai and Thailand firmly on the world’s golfing map.”

The Chiangmai Golf Classic will be a 72-hole strokeplay tournament showcasing 144 players with the leading 94 Asian Tour players featuring in the elite field alongside 10 players from the top-200 of the Official World Golf Ranking, 30 players from Thailand and 10 sponsor’s invitations.