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International Golf Tournament Showcases Abaco to the World

By Krystel Brown

The Bahamas Great Abaco Classic is high on the Web.com leaderboard with several PGA golfers raving about their experience at the event.

After a victorious finish at the inaugural Bahamas Great Abaco Golf Classic, Andrew Landry is considering eventually moving to the island where he secured his second Web.com win.

Winding Bay Staff and Management, representatives from the Ministry of Tourism (including Director General of Tourism Joy Jibrilu), tournament winner Andrew Landry, members of the Royal Bahamas Police Force and others at the close of the Bahamas Great Abaco Classic Golf Tournament held at the Abaco Club at Winding Bay. Photo by Kemuel Stubbs.

Landry came from behind to beat out 131 other golfers during the four-day tournament, which was hosted at the Abaco Club. He walked away with a $108,000 purse. Landry finished three shots ahead of Jimmy Gunn, of Scotland. Zecheng Dou, of China, secured the third spot.

During a post-game interview, Landry, who had a disappointing finish at The Bahamas Great Exuma Golf Classic earlier this month, said while he’s anxious to get home to his wife, he hopes to be back soon.

“This was an absolutely beautiful course,” Landry said. “The fairways were perfect, the bunkers were good, and it was just a great layout. I didn’t get off to that great of a start but I finished strong with three great rounds.

“Everyone here has been absolutely the nicest people in the entire world. I’m definitely coming back for vacation and maybe move down here.”

Landry was one of several golfers who raved about Abaco Club’s golf course, which is considered one of the best in the Caribbean.

Brooks Downing, President of Bd Global Sports, said many of the golfers expressed awe when they saw the course.

“They can’t believe a course like this exists in The Bahamas,” he said. “This was a great secret in golf that these types of courses exist so close to the US off shore.”

Bd Global, an event management and public relations firm, worked with the Ministry of Tourism to bring the Web.com Tour to The Bahamas.

Director of Tournament Business Affairs Jaimie Kennedy said The Bahamas received great exposure as a result of the two tournaments. What’s more, with the addition of the two new classics, The Bahamas has become a top golf destination, he added.

“Other than California and Texas, The Bahamas now rivals the top destination for professional golf with two Web.com events, Tiger (Wood’s) Hero (World) Challenge and of course the LPGA Pure Silk Classic,” he said. “The Bahamas is turning into the golf capital of the Caribbean.”

That sentiment was music to the ears of Joy Jibrilu, Ministry of Tourism’s director general.

“This was the second week of two weeks of exceptional golf in The Bahamas and we couldn’t be more pleased,” Jibrilu said. “The PGA’s Web.com event at Sandals Resort in Exuma was truly wonderful. The athletes’ response to the island was phenomenal. To top that off, Abaco was truly a fantastic experience.

“As a Bahamian, I’m not allowed to say that one was better than the other but I believe that all would agree with me that the golf course here at the Abaco Club at Winding Bay is spectacular. It is rated as one of the best in the Caribbean. What we are trying to do is showcase The Bahamas as the golfing capital of the Caribbean and we are well on our way to doing that, if we are not already there. The Bahamas is certainly becoming known as the place to pay golf. Golf is better in the Bahamas.”

The historic golf tournaments were carried on the golf channel and broadcast to 100 million homes in 150 countries and territories.

The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic took place at Sandals Emerald Bay Golf Course from January 5 to 11.

The Hero’s World Challenge was held at Albany in New Providence in December and the Pure Silk Classic at Ocean Club on Paradise Island is ongoing now.

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