Barrington bound: CVS Classic announces field of pros

Lexi Thompson will return to the CVS Caremark Charity Classic at Rhode Island Country Club next month.

Lexi Thompson will return to the CVS Caremark Charity Classic at Rhode Island Country Club next month.

Lexi Thompson will return to the CVS Caremark Charity Classic at Rhode Island Country Club next month.

Matt Kuchar, Zach Johnson, Steve Stricker and Jason Dufner will highlight the field of professional golfers who will compete at the CVS Caremark Charity Classic at Rhode Island Country Club in Barrington next month.

Brad Faxon and Billy Andrade, PGA TOUR professionals and co-hosts of the CVS Caremark Charity Classic, recently announced some of the elite professionals playing in the 16th annual event.

Set for June 22 to 24 at Rhode Island Country Club, this year’s tournament once again boasts an impressive roster of top-tier PGA TOUR, LPGA Tour and Champions Tour professionals.

Tournament headliners include four PGA TOUR professionals who rank among the top 20 golfers in the world: Matt Kuchar (5), Zach Johnson (13), Steve Stricker (15) and Jason Dufner (20).

Kuchar, who currently sits in third place in the FedEx Cup standings, recently won the RBC Heritage bringing his total PGA TOUR victories to seven.

Johnson, who partnered with Kuchar to win the 2011 CVS Caremark Charity Classic, is an 11-time PGA TOUR winner and currently ranks ninth in the FedEx Cup standings.

Dufner most recently won the 2013 PGA Championship, where he set a 72-hole major championship scoring record. It will be Dufner’s first appearance at the CVS Caremark Charity Classic.

2013 CVS Caremark Charity Co-Champion Stricker is returning to defend his title along with partner Bo Van Pelt. Throughout his career Stricker has earned 11 PGA TOUR wins, including three consecutive John Deer Classic titles. Stricker and Van Pelt, a one-time PGA TOUR winner, posted a CVS Caremark Charity Classic tournament record for lowest winning score (25-under-par 117) last year.

Billy Andrade birdies the second hole in the first round of last year's Classic.

Billy Andrade birdies the second hole in the first round of last year’s Classic.

Representing the LPGA Tour are standout golfers Lexi Thompson, who is currently ranked sixth in the world, and Juli Inkster, the 2015 Solheim Cup captain. Inkster, a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, was one of the first female players to join the CVS Caremark Charity Classic main field (2007) and will be making her seventh appearance in the tournament.

Returning to the CVS Caremark Charity Classic field for the 16th consecutive year is 38-year TOUR veteran Peter Jacobsen. Jacobsen, Faxon and Andrade are the only golfers to have played in the tournament since its inception in 1999.

“We’re excited to once again host the CVS Caremark Charity Classic which supports hundreds of great charities throughout the region,” said Eileen Howard Boone, tournament chairwoman for the CVS Caremark Charity Classic. “Through the years, the tournament has driven more than $17 million dollars to local nonprofits to help fund the vital work they do. We’re proud to be part of such a worthwhile event and are looking forward to another successful year for our charity partners.”

Since 1999, the CVS Caremark Charity Classic has driven more than $17 million to charities around the region.

Tournament news

Tournament week begins with the Pepsi Pro-Am on Sunday, June 22, followed by the two-day tournament on Monday and Tuesday, June 23 and 24. Special tournament activities include:

• Path To Better Health — A walking path around the course that features interactive health and wellness stations. From skin screens and simple exercise and stretching stations to nutritional advice and more, area experts will host interactive and educational stations along the path. The first 1,000 guests to check in at the tournament’s new health and wellness expo on Monday and Tuesday, June 23 and 24 will receive a pedometer to track their steps around the course. Fans who take the most steps daily can enter to win special prizes during the tournament.

• All Kids Can Three-Hole Challenge — Designed to offer kids of all abilities a chance to participate in the tournament and experience golf like the pros, the Puma and Kimberly Clark All Kids Can Three-Hole Challenge features a specially designed challenge on holes 16-18 the morning of Monday, June 23. Five foursomes, each comprised of kids representing a variety of the tournament’s charity partners, will participate in the fun activity.

• Pepsi Max Shootout — For the fourth consecutive year the tournament will host the Pepsi Max Shootout, where the first-place team from each of the Pepsi Pro-Am shotguns compete in a playoff during Monday’s professional tournament.

• Charitable Closest-to-the-Pin Contest — The pros will once again be competing for designated charities in the annual Charitable Closest-to-the-Pin contest. During regular tournament play on Monday and Tuesday the golfer closest to the pin on 17 will win $25,000 for the charity they represent.

• Free Admission for Veterans and First Responders — The CVS Caremark Charity Classic is honoring veterans by offering complimentary admission for all active, reserve and retired Military Service Members and their dependents. Veterans simply present a valid Common Access Card or Retired Military Card at the gate any day throughout the three-day tournament. First responders and their families also receive free admission with a valid ID.

Fans seek autographs at last year's Classic.

Fans seek autographs at last year’s Classic.

Tickets

Tickets for the 2014 CVS Caremark Charity Classic are now on sale including a three-day pass ($60) and single, good-any-day tickets ($25). Children 17 and under are free with a ticketed adult. For additional information on tickets, fans can call 866-CVS-9441 or visit cvscharityclassic.com.

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