Host course not chosen yet for AT&T National
WASHINGTON -- Tiger Woods officially became the host of a PGA Tour event Wednesday that will raise money for a new learning center on the Eastern seaboard and pay tribute to the military during Fourth of July in the nation's capital.
"It's a pretty historic day for us," Woods said. "I remember when I first came on tour, my goal one day with my father was to host an event on the PGA Tour. I just wish he could be here to see it."
The Tiger Woods Foundation, which Earl Woods helped his son establish 10 years ago, will run the AT&T National to be played July 5-8 at a course to be determined. All signs point toward Congressional Country Club the first two years.
Woods and PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem openly lobbied club members to approve hosting the event in 2007 and 2008. An answer could come within a month.
Also undetermined is the size of the purse -- at least $6 million -- and the size of the field. Finchem said the tournament would be similar to invitationals hosted by players such as Arnold Palmer (Bay Hill) and Jack Nicklaus (Memorial).
The one thing that was announced during a news conference at the National Press Club was the commitment of AT&T to become title sponsor of its fifth tournament. The company already sponsors PGA Tour events at Pebble Beach and in Atlanta, along with two tournaments on the Champions Tour. Finchem said the deal would be for at least five years, with an option to sponsor the event through 2012.
Woods' foundation is geared toward children and his biggest project to date has been the $25 million Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif., which opened in February 2006. Woods said 5,000 kids have come through the center, learning everything from rocket science to forensics.
Woods said he would be looking for a site for a new learning center on the East Coast.
The AT&T National replaces the International outside Denver, which shut down last month when tournament founder Jack Vickers couldn't find a sponsor. Vickers attributed the demise to Woods not playing the event since 1999.
Woods expects to play his new tournament every year, although this July is up in the air because his wife is expecting their first child.
Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press