GOLF

Spectators to experience 'exclusive' view at The Hills

Wednesday 21 March 2012, 12:40PM
By Southern Public Relations
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QUEENSTOWN

Exclusive guided walks to a previously non-accessible area of The Hills golf course will be on offer to keen visitors to the NZ PGA Pro-Am Championship at the end of this month.

Major sponsor Milford Track Guided Walk is supplying some of its most experienced guides to lead spectators up to the 15th tee, an area that has always been closed to the public during tournaments.

The Hills Director of Golf Craig Palmer described the 15th tee as a "pretty amazing" spot and one of his favourites on the entire stunning course.

"In past tournaments no members of the public have been able to go to the 15th tee, because it's really high with quite steep drops and it's a bit of a hike to get up there," he said.

"The fact that Milford Track Guided Walk is supplying guides to lead small groups of people up there is really fantastic," he said.

"As well as being as close as you possibly can be to the action when the players tee off, it has amazing course and mountain views.

"People will be able to see all the way up our signature hole the 17th, and see what's happening at 'The 19th' entertainment area.

"I imagine there will be a queue of people signing up to do the walk with the guides and they should absolutely remember to bring their camera to capture the moment and the unbelievable views.

"Every single person that comes to the event will want to go there."

Mr Palmer suggested that people get in early and book their guided walk to avoid disappointment.

The guided walks will be available over all four days of the event (March 29 to April 1 2012). Bookings will be made on a first come, first served basis and must be made at the Milford Track Guided Walk marquee at The 19th entertainment area on the day.

The NZPGA Pro-Am Championship has attracted entries from some of the world's top professional players,

Australian Brendan Jones is the top ranked player confirmed for the tournament, while ten-time US PGA TOUR winner David Frost from South Africa will mount a challenge. Other names to watch include tour veterans Craig Parry, Peter O'Malley, Peter Fowler, David Smail, Mark Brown and Phil Tataurangi.

Big-name amateurs include Hollywood star Don Cheadle, and other sporting, media and business notables such as British Open winner Sir Bob Charles, world women's amateur No 1 Lydia Ko, former All Blacks Justin Marshall, Andy Hayden and Jeff Wilson, former Wallabies captain Nick Farr-Jones, former All Black coach and chairman of the organising committee John Hart, and Sir Michael Hill.

Tickets to The Hills are $20 each day for adults or $55 for a four-day pass. Children aged 15 and under are free. The ticket price includes access to The 19th entertainment area and spectators are encouraged to walk around the course and watch the action from a range of vantage points, or follow individual groups of players.

Gates open daily at 7:30am and there is extensive parking available at The Hills for $10 per day, and regular bus services will operate between Queenstown and The Hills and Arrowtown and The Hills. The Queenstown service (operating from The Station building) will cost $6 each way and the Arrowtown service, operating to and from Ramshaw Lane, is just $3.

The bus service will operate over the four days of the tournament from March 29 to April 1 and will be a 'cash only' service. Pre-booking is not required.

The PGA Pro-Am Championship will be held at The Hills in Queenstown from March 29 to April 1 2012 and further information is available at www.pgachampionship.co.nz