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Friday, April 19, 2024

Out of Bounds

Korn Ferry Tour Championship leaves Newburgh for French Lick.

The current course for PGA’s Korn Ferry Tour Championship has an expiration date. Officials announced Feb. 28 that the tour will play its final title match at Victoria National Golf Club in Newburgh, Indiana, this October. The Pete Dye Course at French Lick, Indiana, will host the championship starting in 2024 for at least the next five years. United Leasing & Finance will remain the title sponsor. Victoria National has hosted the Korn Ferry Championship since 2019.

The switch was prompted by Victoria National owner Dormie Network exercising its option to leave halfway through its 10-year contract as the tour’s host, allowing French Lick to scoop up the remaining five years. No such opt-out is possible in the tour’s contract with French Lick.

The Korn Ferry Tour still will retain ties to the Evansville region. Nonprofit organization Golf Gives Back remains the championship’s charitable arm and is chaired by former Evansville Courier & Press Publisher Jack Pate.

Pate estimates the golf championship impacts the regional economy to the tune of $5-$6 million. With the tournament moving to French Lick, some of that revenue will be lost, but the event will still impact Evansville-area causes.

On the charitable side, Golf Gives Back donates to Building Blocks and other organizations, and those relationships will have opportunities to continue.

“It would not still be in the state of Indiana if we didn’t pursue this alternative. At least with this, we are maintaining a pretty good amount of benefit in the Evansville region,” Pate says. “Ninety percent of our sponsors are from Evansville. We may attract others as we move to French Lick, but they are going to be helping our charitable efforts here.”

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Jodi Keen
Jodi Keen
Jodi Keen is the managing editor of Evansville Living and Evansville Business magazines.

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