-Bertagnole, De Bock, Chan, Fischer, Li, Benak, and Wilkie Take Opening Round Leads-
Palm Harbor, FL (December 28, 2019) – Juniors golfers were treated to near perfect weather conditions today as the 27th annual CJGA World Junior Challenge kicked off at Innisbrook Resort in Palm Harbor, FL. With representation from 25 different countries, an international leader board formed after today’s opening round.
Casper, WY native Caden Bertagnole put together the best round of the day on the Copperhead Course firing an opening round 70 (-1). Opening with a birdie on the first hole and a second on the 6th, a couple bogey’s and a birdie on the back nine gives Bertagnole a one-stroke lead over a trio of players. Morgan Tournemire (Joue-les-Tours, France), Nolan Piazza (Niagara Falls, Ontario) and Sean-Karl Dobson (Austin, Texas) all opened with even-par rounds to sit one back of Bertagnole.
Two girls elevated their game above the others in the first round to take co-lead of the Junior Girls Division on the North Course at Innisbrook Resort. Savannah De Bock (Ecaussinnes, Belgium) and Chole Chan (Hong Kong) both opened with rounds of 71 (+1). Clarksville, TN native Kendall Maynard opened with a round of 72 (+2) to sit in third place heading into tomorrow’s second round followed by Greenwich, CT resident Laetitia Roegner (+4).
Maximillian Fischer from Surry Hills, Australia opened his tournament with a solid 1-under par round (69) to take a two-stroke lead in the Bantam Boys Division. Making birdies on two of his first three holes, Fischer finished his round with a third birdie and two bogeys to sit atop the leader board. Three players sit in a tie for second with opening rounds of 71 (+1). Ali Berker (Sevilla, Spain), Rafael Estrada (Guadalajara, Mexico), and Justin Bai (Lake Mary, FL) will all look to make a move in tomorrow’s second round on the North Course.
Mi Li of Winter Garden, FL took a commanding lead after play ended on the first day of competition in the Bantam Girls Division. Firing an opening round 71 (+1), Li has a seven-stroke lead heading into the second round on the North Course. Shooting two-over par on the front nine with three bogeys’, Li turned things around on the back, shooting one-under to close her round at plus one. Pepper Pike, OH resident Ella Wong and Toronto, Ontario native Olivia Wilkie opened with a pair of 78’s (+8) to sit in a tie for second.
Tampa, FL resident Ronav Benak fired the round of the day with a round of four-under par (66) to take a one-stroke lead on the North Course in the Peewee Boys Division. Benak had an eagle and birdie on the front nine, accompanied with an eagle, two birdies and three bogeys on the back nine. Keeping pace with Benak is Casper, WY resident Carson Bertagnole after he opened the tournament with a three-under par (67) round. Henry Dao of Laprarie, QC opened his tournament with a 69 (-1) to sit in third place.
Bridget Wilkie of Toronto, ON jumped out to an early lead in the Peewee Girls Division opening with a 71 (+1). Wilkie’s score card included three birdies and four bogeys to take a three-stroke lead over three other players. Zoie Chan (Hong Kong), Ann-Sophie Bourgault (Mont Tremblant, QC) and Lucy Lin (Paphos, Cyprus) all opened with rounds of 74 (+3) to sit in a three-way tie for second.
Tournament Information – CJGA World Junior Challenge
Round two gets under way at 7:45am on both the Island Course and North Course. Final round will get under way on Monday on the Copperhead and North Courses.
About Innisbrook, a Salamander Golf & Spa Resort
Operated by Salamander Hotels & Resorts and owned by Sheila C. Johnson, Innisbrook is situated on 900 wooded acres of rolling hills in the St. Petersburg/Clearwater area on Florida’s Gulf Coast, and is located just 30 minutes from Tampa International Airport. The resort features 72 holes of championship golf, 550 spacious guest suites and rooms, four restaurants and three bars, the Innisbrook Golf Academy, 11 tennis courts, the luxury Indaba Spa with 12 treatment rooms and state-of-the-art Fitness Center, six heated swimming pool complexes, a nature preserve, and three conference halls with 100,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting space. Part of Salamander’s Golf Collection, Innisbrook hosts the annual Valspar Championship presented by BB&T at its famed Copperhead Course. For additional information call 727.942.2000 or visit www.innisbrookgolfresort.com.
About Visit St. Pete/Clearwater
Situated on a sun-drenched peninsula separating the Gulf of Mexico from Tampa Bay, St. Pete/Clearwater is the most popular destination on the Gulf of Mexico with 35 miles of white-sand beaches. Renowned for its award-winning beaches and charming Florida beach towns, St. Pete/Clearwater routinely lands on TripAdvisor’s Best Beaches lists. Reaffirming its reputation as America’s Best Beaches, Clearwater Beach was crowned TripAdvisor’s 2018 No. 1 Best Beach in the U.S. for the second time in three years, in addition to being named No. 7 in the World. St. Pete Beach came in at No. 7 putting two area beaches in the Top 10.
In addition to the raved-about beach towns, the area’s culinary, arts and cultural scenes are just a few reasons why St. Pete/Clearwater is a top international destination. From world-class museums, including The Dali Museum and more than 100+ vibrant urban murals sprinkling downtown St. Pete, to Winter the dolphin, star of blockbuster film Dolphin Tale, calling Clearwater Marine Aquarium home and the PGA Tour’s Valspar Championship at Innisbrook’s Copperhead Course, there’s even more to discover beyond the beaches.
No matter where you visit while on vacation in the St. Pete/Clearwater area, you’ll get a glimpse of authentic Florida with great people, tons of attractions, and fun (and beaches) for miles.
About the Canadian Junior Golf Association
The Canadian Junior Golf Association (CJGA) is a “registered Canadian amateur athletic association” (RCAAA) non-for-profit registered federally with Revenue Canada. The CJGA is dedicated to providing Canada’s junior golfers with the necessary skills and knowledge required to lay a foundation for a future in competitive golf.
Through its six-stage competitive development program that focuses on tournaments, clinics, international competitions, and mentoring programs with PGA Tour professionals, the CJGA introduces the game to juniors as young as five and offers competitive multi-day events for the more advanced golfer. The CJGA acts as a feeder system to provincial and national competitions, collegiate and university golf, as well as professional and recreational golf. For more information, please visit www.cjga.com.
The Canadian Junior Golf Association is generously supported by its National Partner, Freedom 55 Financial, which provides financial security advice and planning for Canadians.
For Additional Information:
Canadian Junior Golf Association