Golf News for Wednesday, December 21, 2016 | Tournaments

Dufner, Johnson, Reed and Haas commit to play in 2017 CareerBuilder Challenge

LA QUINTA, Calif. -- From major championship winners to past tournament champions, to golf's up-and-coming generation of competitors, the early commitments to the 2017 CareerBuilder Challenge's 156-player professional field showcase many of the world's best, most accomplished PGA TOUR golfers.

Jason Dufner is committed to defending his CareerBuilder Challenge title against the likes of World No. 8 and 2014 tournament champion Patrick Reed, fellow victorious 2016 United States Ryder Cup teammate and two-time major champion Zach Johnson (2007 Masters and 2015 British Open), and 2010 and 2015 tournament winner Bill Haas - the PGA TOUR's 2011 FedExCup Playoffs champion - in the 58th edition of the tournament Jan. 19-22 at the Stadium and Jack Nicklaus Tournament Courses at PGA WEST and La Quinta Country Club.

CareerBuilder Challenge ambassador Phil Mickelson - the event champion in 2002 and 2004 and a five-time major championship winner - previously committed to play, pending his recovery from sports hernia surgery.

Dufner won his fourth PGA TOUR title - his first since claiming the 2013 PGA Championship - at the 2016 CareerBuilder Challenge by shooting 25-under-par 263 through the regulation 72 holes and besting David Lingmerth on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff.

Joining Mickelson, Dufner and Johnson as major champions in the CareerBuilder Challenge field to date is 2009 British Open winner Stewart Cink and Angel Cabrera, the 2007 U.S. Open and 2009 Masters champion.

Dufner, Haas, Reed and Mickelson are among 13 past CareerBuilder Challenge champions entering early into the field. Also on this tournament honor roll are 2007 champ Charley Hoffman; 2009 champ Pat Perez, who is No. 3 in the PGA TOUR's 2016-17 FedExCup standings, Brian Gay (2013 CareerBuilder Challenge winner), Mark Wilson (2012), Jhonattan Vegas (2011), D.J. Trahan (2008), Chad Campbell (2006), John Cook (1992, 1997) and Mark Brooks (1996).

"The CareerBuilder Challenge field is beginning to look like a very talented and competitive group," CareerBuilder Challenge Executive Director and Desert Classic Charities CEO Nick Raffaele said. "We have many accomplished golfers who have won top accolades in the sport. We are hoping to round out our field by securing more big players closer to tournament week."

Supporting Reed within the talented, young generation of golfers that gives the CareerBuilder Challenge such quality depth in its early field include Brendan Steele (No. 5 in the current FedExCup standings), of nearby Idyllwild, Kevin Kisner and four-time PGA TOUR winner Chris Kirk.

Highly-touted PGA TOUR rookies set to play next month's CareerBuilder Challenge include 2015 U.S. Amateur and NCAA individual champion Bryson DeChambeau, 2016 Web.com Tour Player of the Year Wesley Bryan and former amateur World No. 1 Ollie Schniederjans. Aaron Wise, the 2016 NCAA individual champion, is also making his CareerBuilder Challenge debut.

The tournament will feature some quality international flavor through the inclusion of Argentina's Cabrera, Italy's Francesco Molinari (No. 31 in the world), Colombia's Camilo Villegas, Korean sensation Si Woo Kim and Spain's Jon Rahm, who was the only amateur to make the cut at the 2016 U.S. Open, placed third in his pro debut at the PGA TOUR's 2016 Quicken Loans National a week later, and is embarking on his first full PGA TOUR season.

CareerBuilder Challenge tickets and complete tournament information are available at www.CareerBuilderChallenge.com. Discounted ticket specials to the CareerBuilder Challenge are available at CareerBuilderChallenge.com through Dec. 31 (all ticket options will revert to at-the-gate pricing on Jan. 1, 2017). Daily grounds passes start at just $20, and there are options for weekly passes as well as upgraded VIP experiences. All grounds ticket options are eligible for viewing at all tournament courses.

All active duty, reserve, and military retirees, along with one guest, may attend the CareerBuilder Challenge any day for free. Children 15 and under also receive free admission when accompanied by a paying adult (limit 2 children per adult). Daily parking passes ($10) and weekly parking passes ($30, good Jan. 18-22) are also available at www.CareerBuilderChallenge.com.

Chief among the CareerBuilder Challenge's new amenities enhancing the fan experience will be a Saturday concert following play featuring popular indie-pop band Fitz and the Tantrums. As part of the tournament's "Golf and Guitars" theme, the concert will be open to all spectators with a Saturday ticket and will take place adjacent to the driving range between the Stadium and Jack Nicklaus Tournament Courses at PGA WEST shortly following the conclusion of third-round play on Jan. 21.

Additionally, all ticketed patrons will have access to the new Club 9 Lounge, located between holes 1 and 9 at the Stadium Course and featuring a fresh-dining, lounging and relaxation experience. The Club 9 Lounge will feature a special art preview of the La Quinta Arts Festival from Friday, Jan. 20- Sunday, Jan. 22. Tickets and commemorative posters for the March festival will be on sale at the Club 9 Lounge during this time.

The CareerBuilder Challenge's main entrance at the Stadium Course at PGA WEST will open up to food trucks (back to the CareerBuilder Challenge for the third consecutive year by popular demand), free fan activities and tournament exhibitors.

The CareerBuilder Challenge - the Coachella Valley's longest-running charitable event, organized and operated by Desert Classic Charities - has raised more than $57 million for Eisenhower Medical Center and other local charities since its inception as the Palm Springs Golf Classic in 1960.

About CareerBuilder:
CareerBuilder is the only end-to-end human capital management company covering the entire candidate lifecycle and employee lifecycle for businesses. As the global leader in its industry, CareerBuilder specializes in cutting-edge HR software as a service to help companies with every step of talent acquisition and management. CareerBuilder works with top employers across industries, providing solutions for talent and labor market analytics, job distribution, candidate sourcing, tracking, onboarding, HRIS, benefits administration and compliance. It also operates leading job sites around the world. Owned by TEGNA Inc. (NYSE:TGNA), Tribune Media (NYSE:TRCO) and McClatchy (NYSE:MNI), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, South America, Canada and Asia. For more information, visit www.careerbuilder.com.

About Desert Classic Charities
Since its inception, Desert Classic Charities, the charitable entity that organizes the PGA TOUR event in the Coachella Valley, has contributed more than $57 million to Coachella Valley charitable organizations. The scope of giving is broad and includes support for structured and mentoring programs for children, social services, and food and safe shelter for the less fortunate. Desert Classic Charities is dedicated to continuing its mission to serve human needs in the Coachella Valley and beyond by generating funds and opportunities every year through the event.

About PGA TOUR
The PGA TOUR is the world's premier membership organization for touring professional golfers, co-sanctioning more than 130 tournaments on the PGA TOUR, PGA TOUR Champions, Web.com Tour, PGA TOUR Latinoamérica, Mackenzie Tour-PGA TOUR Canada and PGA TOUR China.

The PGA TOUR's mission is to entertain and inspire its fans, deliver substantial value to its partners, create outlets for volunteers to give back, generate significant charitable and economic impact in the communities in which it plays, and provide financial opportunities for TOUR players.

Worldwide, PGA TOUR tournaments are broadcast to more than 1 billion households in 227 countries and territories in 30 languages. Virtually all tournaments are organized as non-profit organizations in order to maximize charitable giving. In 2015, tournaments across all Tours generated a record $160 million for local and national charitable organizations, bringing the all-time total to $2.3 billion.

The PGA TOUR's web site is PGATOUR.COM, the No. 1 site in golf, and the organization is headquartered in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL.

MEDIA CONTACTS:
Gayle Cochrane, Desert Classic Charities - Gayle@desertclassiccharities.com - 760-469-8781
Damian Secore, BZA Public Relations - DamianS@bzapr.com - 818-462-5614
Greg Ball, BZA Public Relations - GregB@bzapr.com - 760-271-9183