Agreement will begin with 2023 event at Olympia Fields Country Club
Glenview, Ill. – BMW, the PGA TOUR and the Western Golf Association announced today a five-year extension for BMW to remain the title sponsor of the TOUR’s second FedExCup Playoffs event through 2027. Also announced today was the return of the BMW Championship to the Chicago area in 2023 at Olympia Fields Country Club, which also hosted the event in 2020.
“We would like to express our sincere thanks to BMW for their continued support of the PGA TOUR and the Western Golf Association through 2027,” said PGA TOUR Commissioner Jay Monahan. “The BMW Championship played an incredibly impactful role in launching the FedExCup in 2007, and BMW’s commitment to presenting a best-in-class event each year continues to elevate the FedExCup Playoffs. We are also very appreciative of BMW’s dedication to fulfilling the mission of the Evans Scholars Foundation, having impacted thousands of lives over the last 15 years.”
Previously known as the Western Open, the BMW Championship was first hosted in 2007. It has since been named the PGA TOUR’s Tournament of the Year four times (2008, 2012, 2013 and 2014). The championship will continue to serve as the penultimate event of the PGA TOUR’s FedExCup Playoffs, featuring the season’s top 70 players. The 2022 BMW Championship will be played at Wilmington Country Club in Wilmington, Delaware, on Aug. 16-21.
“For the past 15 years, we have worked with our partners at the PGA TOUR and the Western Golf Association to host the top 70 players in the world at what has become one of the best, and most exciting, events on the golf calendar,” said Sebastian Mackensen, president and CEO, BMW of North America. “The BMW Championship is not only a great way to showcase our brand and engage customers, but also a wonderful opportunity to raise money for the Evans Scholars Foundation and help so many young students to follow their dreams.”
Each year, proceeds from the BMW Championship benefit the Evans Scholars Foundation, which provides full tuition and housing scholarships for hard-working young caddies. Over the past 15 years, the BMW Championship has raised more than $40 million on behalf of the Evans Scholars Foundation and has helped send more than 3,000 students to college. This academic year, a record 1,070 caddies are attending 21 major colleges and universities on Evans Scholarships.
“Since 2007, BMW has been our valued partner and a steadfast supporter of both our championships and the Evans Scholars Foundation,” said John Kaczkowski, WGA President and CEO. “As title sponsor, BMW has fully embraced our mission, helping us transform the Evans Scholars Foundation into a truly national program. We’re excited and grateful for the opportunity to continue working together to change the lives of youth caddies nationwide.”
Dating back to 1899 when it debuted as the Western Open, the BMW Championship is the third-oldest tournament on the PGA TOUR schedule, behind only The Open Championship and the U.S. Open. Patrick Cantlay captured the 2021 BMW Championship at Caves Valley Golf Club, outlasting Bryson DeChambeau in a thrilling six-hole playoff.
The 2023 championship will be played on Olympia Fields’ famed North Course, designed in 1923 by professional golfer and course architect Willie Park Jr. Olympia Fields has hosted the event six times, including in 2020, when it was held without fans due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
That event featured one of the most exciting finishes in BMW Championship history as Jon Rahm made a 66-foot birdie putt to beat Dustin Johnson on the first playoff hole. Bruce Crampton (1971), Jack Nicklaus (1968), Macdonald Smith (1933), Walter Hagen (1927) and Jock Hutchison (1920) also won the event at Olympia Fields.
“We are thrilled and honored to welcome the 2023 BMW Championship back to Olympia Fields Country Club and our North Course, which has been the site of so many incredible moments in the history of this event,” said William McErlean, President of Olympia Fields Country Club. “Our membership looks forward to sharing our facilities with the golf community, as well as the best players in the world.”
Olympia Fields has a rich championship tradition. Aside from the BMW Championship, it recently hosted the 2003 U.S. Open, won by Jim Furyk; the 2015 U.S. Amateur, won by DeChambeau; and the 2017 Women’s PGA Championship, won by Danielle Kang.
In addition to supporting WGA championships, Olympia Fields has been a steadfast supporter of the Evans Scholars Program. Over the years, 183 Olympia Fields caddies have become Evans Scholars, beginning with Don Dahlke, who earned an Evans Scholarship in 1954 to attend Northwestern University. Nine Olympia Fields caddies currently are attending college as Evans Scholars.