Golf's Big Hitters Ready For Auckland

Wednesday 26 October 2016, 1:49PM
By dave worsley


A slight change of name, but the International Long Drivers Invitational is definitely on and being held at Remuera Golf Club in Auckland, November 5th and 6th 2016 and will still features eight of the top long drivers  from around the world.

Included in the field will be Maurice Allen the current champion long driver in Europe 2015, a former Guinness World Record holder of golf ball speed (211mph) who has an in-competition longest drive of 459 yards (419.71 metres). He is  also the nephew of NBA legend Julius ‘Dr J’ Erving.

“I am excited to come to Auckland this weekend to promote and then play in the New Zealand International Long Drive Invitational. This will bring eight amazing long drive competitors from eight different countries to Auckland and will be an amazing kick off to introduce the beautiful country of New Zealand to the thrill seeking sport of long drive. This event along with many other community outreach events have been planned and promoted by IGANZ and Olna Ford and her team have done a magnificent job creating a movement rather than just an event. I believe IGANZ will grow the sport of long drive not only for New Zealand but for the entire South Pacific,” explains Allen.

“This event will take place at the elegant Remuera Golf Club which I am looking forward to playing. I am glad they are the host venue especially with their history in the sport. This is going to be huge event for the country and I'm thankful to be a part of this experience,” said Allen who has a long list of achievements in golf and in community engagement (

Eight different nations will be represented in Auckland; Allen (United States), Roseberg (Sweden), Bob de Boef (Holland), Teemu Pikanen (Finland), Mauro Benaglio (Switzerland), Tanguy Marionex (Belgium), Timo Petrasch (Germany) and Ilija Djurdjevic (Serbia).

Major worldwide equipment supplier, Volvik is supporting the event while the Golf Channel is in talks with organisers regarding 2017 Long Driver events to take place in New Zealand.  Other International Long Drive players have shown their interest to attend this and other events, and have asked to be kept in contact for future opportunities.

Recent rumours circulating about the event have been dispelled with the New Zealand organisors of the International Drivers Invitational maintaining a professional level of workmanship and having secured all financial backing required to host a top tournament which will broaden the scope of long driving around the world and create a legacy for further events in New Zealand.  

Saturday 5th November will feature demonstrations and clinics with members of the public and media who have won their places testing themselves against the Long Drivers athletes at Remuera Golf Club. Sunday 6th November is the tournament itself as the eight finalists go head-to-head for the year-end title. Part of the event will see fireworks displays, concerts and other entertainment at Remuera Golf Club.