NEWPORT BEACH, Calif.—Toshiba Classic executive director Jeff Purser
must be spending more time on the golf course than anyone realizes. Purser’s
clutch chip shot to within 18 inches of the cup earned his team the two
points needed to edge Esteban Toledo’s team in the first annual
Toshiba Skills Challenge competition at Newport Beach Country Club on
Tuesday morning. The event format featured four teams comprised of an
avid golfing celebrity, a Champions Tour player, a VIP and a member of
the media. Each team participated in three skills challenges—a long
drive, a 125-yard approach shot and a chip shot.
Purser’s team, which also included Champions Tour player John Cook,
former Major League Baseball player Steve Finley and John Howard, a sports
reporter from Channel 8 in San Diego, earned a cumulative 23 points, nipping
Toledo’s foursome by one point, a teach that featured Dustin “Duddy
B” Bushnell, the founder of a popular Southern California-based
reggae group The Dirty Heads, Matt “Money” Smith, co-host
of Fox Sports Radio’s “Petros and Money Show” and Patrick
Mani, the vice president of field sales at Toshiba America Information Systems.
A $50,000 donation was made in the name of Team Cook to Hoag Hospital’s
Mary & Dick Allen Diabetes Center.
“Jeff came through with the key chip at the end. I certainly didn’t
help out that much,” Cook said. “Anything we can do early
in the tournament week to create more revenue for the foundations that
you play for is all good. We are glad to help out the hospital and help
out the kids. Anytime something like this can happen, it’s a good
Gary McCord’s team, which included Anaheim Angels baseball great
Garret Anderson, Jerry Mattes, the president of UPS and John Reger, a
long-time golf writer in Orange County, finished third. Fuzzy Zoeller’s
team finished last and included 2004 Heisman Trophy winner Matt Leinart,
ESPN SportsCenter co-host Stan Verrett and Mark Simons, the president
of Toshiba America Information Systems.
“This is the first time we’ve done this skills challenge,
and I think everyone who participated enjoyed themselves. I was glad to
be on the winning team, but more importantly I think Hoag Hospital was
the big beneficiary from this event,” Purser said. “I think
it was a great way to kick off our tournament week.”
To read the original article on the PGA Tour website, click here.