PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- Roger Chapman spent several moments gazing at the Alfred S. Bourne Trophy during Media Day activities promoting the 74th Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid. A defending champion has earned the right to get up close and personal with such an esteemed piece of silverware.
Chapman's 2012 season was that year's most stunning story in golf, and the 53-year-old from Ascot, England was often emotional by the attention.
"It (winning) means everything to me," said Chapman, the first Englishman to win the most historic and prestigious event in senior golf. "You just look at all the names on that trophy - Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson, Lee Trevino and Hale Irwin, all legends of the game. To be a part of that club is a proud moment for me and an honor."
Chapman was making his first visit to Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, getting in a practice round for the Championship's debut in Missouri, May 21-26.
Joining Chapman on the course were local and city community leaders, media, and PGA of America and KitchenAid executives. Next month, Bellerive becomes just the third club in the country to have hosted all four rotating men's professional major championships (the PGA Championship, Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid, U.S. Open and U.S. Senior Open).
"The year 2012 was a special year for my family and for me," said Chapman. "I went to Benton Harbor with no thoughts about winning the event. I had played only one event on the European Senior Tour all year. It was just a wonderful experience. Then to come back and win the U.S. Senior Open at another wonderful course - Indianwood (in Lake Orion, Mich.) - a few weeks later was very special to me as well. It proved I wasn't a one-time wonder."
Chapman said that enjoyed playing Bellerive, adding "it will certainly be a challenge when it's being played under Championship conditions."
"Bellerive is an excellent course," said Chapman. "With the weather in the past week, it's not been a great time for it, but I'm sure that when it's time for the Championship in a couple of weeks, it will be in tip-top condition. I know my counterparts on the Senior European Tour are champing at the bit because they haven't played since last December."
The PGA of America highlighted the Championship's impact on the local and state level, current and future initiatives set forth by PGA REACH.
Also attending Championship Media Day was Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, PGA of America President Ted Bishop, Deb O'Connor, director of Global Corporate Reputation & Community Relations for KitchenAid; and baseball Hall of Famer Ozzie Smith, president of Gateway PGA Foundation.
"You see great local ties from both sides of the river and throughout the Show Me State for this event," said Gov. Nixon. "We are very proud to be hosting the Senior PGA Championship. We also are deeply appreciative of corporate sponsorship that we've gotten here. I cannot say enough about the people who have taken time to raise money for charity surrounding this event.
"The PGA has been a true leader in this country, leaving towns better than they found them."
Later in the day, Smith, Chapman and additional PGA of America officials visited with representatives of Urban K-Life, Boys and Girls Club of Greater St. Louis and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Eastern Missouri to get a hands-on perspective at the different types of programs and initiatives that PGA REACH is offering Greater St. Louis.
Tickets to the 74th Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid are available by visiting srpga2013.com, or by calling 1-800-PGA-GOLF (742-4653).
About The PGA of America
Since its founding in 1916, The PGA of America has maintained a twofold mission: to establish and elevate the standards of the profession and to grow interest and participation in the game of golf. By establishing and elevating the standards of the golf profession through world-class education, career services, marketing and research programs, The PGA enables its professionals to maximize their performance in their respective career paths and showcases them as experts in the game and in the multi-billion dollar golf industry. By creating and delivering world-class championships and innovative programs, The PGA of America elevates the public's interest in the game, the desire to play more golf, and ensures accessibility to the game for everyone, everywhere. As The PGA nears its centennial, the PGA brand represents the very best in golf.
Since the introduction of its legendary stand mixer in 1919 and first dishwasher in 1949, KitchenAid has built on the legacy of these icons to create a complete line of products designed for cooks. Today, the KitchenAid brand offers virtually every essential for the well-equipped kitchen with a collection that includes everything from countertop appliances to cookware, ranges to refrigerators, and whisks to wine cellars. Cook for the Cure®, the brand's partnership with Susan G. Komen for the Cure®, is now in its eleventh year and has raised over $8 million to help find a cure for breast cancer. To learn why chefs choose KitchenAid for their homes more than any other brand, visit KitchenAid.com or join us at:
About Bellerive Country Club
Opened in 1897, Bellerive Country Club has a 100 year history of hosting spectator and championship golf. With the 2013 Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid, Bellerive will become only the third club in the United States to host all four traveling men's professional major championships (PGA Championship, Senior PGA Championship, US Open and US Senior Open). Bellerive will also host the 100th PGA Championship in August of 2018.