BLT event revamped as Triple Play
About a dozen years have passed since the Elam Classic women’s golf tournament was hosted on three local golf courses.
The tournament, which began as the BLT, an acronym for the three courses on which it was played — Bookcliff Country Club, Lincoln Park and Tiara Rado — was a Colorado rarity: a three-day, stroke-play women’s golf tournament. It drew some of the best female golfers from the Front Range and Utah, and it boasted one of the best payouts for a women’s tournament in Colorado.
With a few modifications, the tournament returns this weekend. It remains 54 holes of stroke play, but it will be called the Western Slope Triple Play Women’s Golf Tournament, and it replaces Lincoln Park with The Golf Club at Redlands Mesa.
It also has three new sponsors — Encana is the title sponsor, and ANB Bank and Custom Industries are cosponsors — and has become a fundraising event, benefitting Hilltop’s Latimer House. ANB Bank is donating $1,400 to Latimer House, and all of the hole-sponsorship money will go to the program, according to Vicki Riley, one of the event organizers. She estimated about $14,000 will be raised for Latimer House, which aids victims of domestic violence and sexual assault.
Players must have an active USGA handicap index, and about 70 women have registered to play this weekend. Riley said that’s a respectable number for the first year back, and she hopes it will grow to the 120-player mark the tourney enjoyed in its heyday.
To that end, Marjorie Genova, who ran the tourney for its first nine years when it was the BLT and then the Elam Classic, said the tournament “was the most successful (women’s golf) tournament for Colorado and Utah. ... It paid the highest for any golf tournament (in Colorado) at that time.”
The tournament will feature a shootout Saturday afternoon at Tiara Rado with $1,000 at stake.
Each of the three flights will pay out for 10 places with money going to the top five gross and top five net scores. The gross and net winners in each flight will claim $300 apiece, said Deb Ghiloni, a member of the tournament committee.
Any female golfer interested in entering the Western Slope Triple Play at the last second has until 5 p.m. today to do so. Call city of Grand Junction head golf pro Mike Mendelson at 254-3830, or Ghiloni at 250-1885.
The cost is $195 and includes green fees, cart, prize money, a shootout Saturday afternoon at Tiara Rado, and a dinner Saturday after golf.
Spots remain for Bamford tourney
Space is available for the Mike Bamford Foundation Memorial Golf Tournament on Aug. 3 at Redlands Mesa Golf Club.
The tournament is in memory of Mike Bamford, who died during his senior year at Grand Junction High School after a long battle with cystic fibrosis.
Proceeds from the tournament benefit programs at Children’s Hospitals in Denver to assist families and children battling life-threatening diseases. The money provides items such as pendants and a T-shirt and wristband urging families and children to “Never give up.”
Proceeds from the tournament also fund a scholarship for Grand Junction High School students and recognize courage and perseverance under adverse circumstances, such as that shown by a recent recipient, Mikayla O’Brien, who defeated cancer five years ago, but she had to relearn how to walk, talk and write.
Cost is $125 per player, and participants can register on the website, http://www.mikebamfordfoundation.org, or by calling Kelly Bamford at 261-4471.