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One of Golf's Greatest Legends And Canadian PGATour Star Round Out Foursome For TELUS Skins Game at Nicklaus North

19th April, 2005
Canada prepares to pay tribute to golf legend at TELUS Skins Game... Jack Nicklaus and Canadian Stephen Ames round out foursome competing for $360,000 at Whistler’s Nicklaus North in July.

Over the course of his legendary career, Jack Nicklaus has contributed as much, or more, as anyone to the game of golf, and this summer Canadian fans will be able to help pay tribute to him when the Golden Bear returns to Canada to play in the TELUS Skins Game July 4-5 at Whistler’s Nicklaus North Golf Course. Nicklaus will be participating in the event just one week before playing in his final British Open at St. Andrews.

Also joining Nicklaus in the foursome competing for $360,000 in prize money will be Canadian PGA Tour player Stephen Ames, who has been rocketing up the Golf World Rankings over the past two seasons. They will be joining Vijay Singh and John Daly, who were both announced previously.

“Each year, the TELUS Skins Game is a highlight of the Canadian summer sporting schedule, and on behalf of Canadian fans, we thought it was important this year to thank Jack Nicklaus for everything he has given to the game of golf,” said Darren Entwistle, TELUS President and CEO. “This year’s event will be a celebration of the game, and one of the men who made it great. We’re thrilled to be able to share this event with golf fans from all corners of the country.”

Tickets for the annual summer golf classic go on sale to the public Monday, April 25 and 10 a.m. (Pacific Time) through TicketMaster by calling 1-888-833-4447 or by visiting www.ticketmaster.ca. Tickets are priced at $129 for a two-day pass and $75 for a one-day pass for either Monday, July 4 or Tuesday, July 5. A junior ticket discount of half price is available for children 12 years and under.  Prices do not include applicable taxes and service charge.

This year’s event will mark Nicklaus’ third appearance in the Canadian Skins Game. He participated in the inaugural event in 1993 at Devil’s Pulpit in Caledon, Ontario and again in 1997 at Nicklaus North Golf Course, a course that he himself designed. For Stephen Ames, 2005 will be his first appearance in the event and he becomes the third Canadian to participate, joining Mike Weir (1998-2002) and Ian Leggatt (2003).

“I’m looking forward to returning to Canada’s TELUS Skins Game and to Nicklaus North,” said Nicklaus. “I’ve always enjoyed my long association with Canada and its people, whether it be the decades I competed in the Canadian Open, designing golf courses, or just coming up with Barbara and the family to fish. Nicklaus North is a fabulous course in a beautiful setting. I think it will be a good test for Vijay, John, Stephen and certainly myself.”

Nicklaus dominated professional golf in the 1960’s and 70’s compiling a list of career accomplishments that have become the standard by which most of today’s players are measured. He won 18 professional major championships, including a record number of Masters titles (six).  He is tied for the most PGA Championship (five) and U.S. Open (four) victories. Nicklaus has also earned three British Open titles, making him the only person to win each of the Grand Slam tournaments at least three times. In fact, only four players (Ben Hogan, Gene Sarazen, Gary Player and Tiger Woods) won the career Grand Slam once, and Nicklaus is the only golfer in history to do so on both the regular and senior tours.

Ames, who will turn 41 on April 28, enjoyed a career year on the PGA Tour in 2004. He had a career-best 11 top-10 finishes, including his first Tour victory at the Cialis Western Open in July, and finished the year eighth on the Tour money list. He began the season ranked 96th on the Official World Golf Ranking but rose to as high as 17th during the season. Ames is currently ranked 25th in the world. He earned his first top-10 finish of the 2005 season this past weekend, finishing tied for sixth at the MCI Heritage

A native of Trinidad-Tobago, Ames received his Canadian citizenship in December of 2003 and he resides in Calgary year-round with his wife Jodi and their two sons, Justin and Ryan.

“The TELUS Skins Game is a terrific event and I’m proud to be representing Canada in it this year,” said Ames.  “I’m thrilled to not only be included this year, but to get the chance to play with Jack Nicklaus. I know Canadian fans will love this opportunity to thank him for all he has done for the game.”

It has also been confirmed that The Fairmont Chateau Whistler will be the official hotel of the 2005 TELUS Skins Game, housing the players and sponsors as well as special sponsor events.

Over the years, the Skins Game line-up has included many of the biggest names in golf, including: Nick Price, Ray Floyd, Jack Nicklaus, Fred Couples, Lee Trevino, Tom Watson, Nick Faldo, Ben Crenshaw, Greg Norman, John Daly, Ernie Els, Mark O’Meara, Mike Weir, Ian Leggatt, David Duval, Sergio Garcia, Hank Kuehne, Vijay Singh and Phil Mickelson, the winner of the 2004 TELUS Skins Game.

The TELUS Skins Game is also sponsored by Nicklaus North Golf Course, the GolfBC Group, Firethorn, Pinnacle/Cobra and The Fairmont Chateau Whistler. Media partners for the event include The Vancouver Sun, The Province, Mojo Sports Radio AM 730 and CKNW AM 980, Pacific Golf Magazine and ScoreGolf Canada.


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Contact:
Dave Haggith
IMG Canada
Tel: (416) 960-5312 ext. 123
e-mail: dhaggith@imgworld.com

Shawn Hall
TELUS Media Relations
Tel: (604) 697-8176
e-mail: shawn.hall@telus.com