The Evian Championship to Award Wild Card to Arnold Palmer Cup Participant


NORMAN, Okla. – Beginning in 2018 The Evian Championship will grant a wild card to a women’s member of the Arnold Palmer Cup. This will mirror the exemption currently granted to a men’s golfer by the Arnold Palmer Invitational presented by Mastercard. This summer’s Arnold Palmer Cup, the first to be held under the expanded format to include men’s and women’s USA collegiate golfers against their counterparts from around the world, will be staged July 6-8 at Evian Resort Golf Club. This year’s Evian Championship will be held September 13-16 before moving to a late July date beginning in 2019.

“This is an exciting opportunity for female collegiate golfers,” said Amy Palmer Saunders, president of Arnie’s Army Charitable Foundation. “The goal of the Arnold Palmer Cup has always been to create opportunities for collegiate golfers and having both our male and female golfers receive an exemption into a top-flight professional tournament accomplishes that goal. This year we are delighted to welcome Rolex as our Presenting Partner and are looking forward to the continuation of the long relationship that my father enjoyed with this company for over 50 years.”

The first and only golf Major in Continental Europe, The Evian Championship is the fifth Major in women’s golf alongside the ANA Inspiration, KPMG Women's PGA Championship, US Women's Open and Ricoh British Open. The 120 leading women players of the past 25 years have already played the course at the Evian Resort Golf Club, which was totally redesigned in 2013, making its own history and placing itself at the very highest level of world golf. In this magical setting between lake and mountains, The Evian Championship has succeeded in creating a Major unlike any other, offering the world's golfing elite prize money which continues to grow significantly, to reach $3,850,00 in 2018. This prominence enables the tournament board to develop a sporting policy resolutely focused on young players around the Major.

Voted “Europe’s leading luxury golf resort 2015” at the World Luxury Hotel Awards, the Evian Resort is a golf destination not to be missed. Located in 148 acres of wooded parkland on the Shores of Lake Geneva, at the foot of the Alps, the Evian Resort Golf Club is a spectacular golf course with pace that asserts its strong French identity. The home to The Evian Championship, it and offers the legendary quality of a championship course set in stunning natural surroundings. It is one of the oldest courses in France.

The course at the Evian Resort Golf Club was totally redesigned in 2013 by a team of international architects. The objective was to give a strong identity to these 18 holes positioned in the heart of an exceptional natural setting while respecting a set of values, relating to protection of the environment. The course is today a true Major course, challenging, with a very clear, spectacular overall vision.

“We are delighted and honored to welcome an event as prestigious as the Arnold Palmer Cup this July, both for the tournament’s namesake, one of the greatest players in the sport's history, and for the chance it gives the top US and International college golfers,” said Franck Riboud, Chairman of The Evian Championship. “And we are so proud to have the opportunity to give a wild card for the next Evian Championship to one of the Arnold Palmer Cup 2018 players. This initiative resonates with the policy pursued by the tournament of giving the youngest players the opportunity to experience a Major. We are convinced this is part of their learning process and we are pleased to help them along this path.”

Selection of the Arnold Palmer Cup representative in The Evian Championship will be determined by a vote of the Arnold Palmer Cup participants prior to the competition. The players will select a member of each team (excluding themselves) who they think best represents the “Arnold Palmer Legacy,” that is, the values that Arnold Palmer exhibited during his legendary career. The top vote getter from the winning team will earn the invitation. The Arnold Palmer Cup player selected must remain an amateur golfer to compete at Evian Resort Golf Club. The junior caddie for the designated Arnold Palmer Cup player also will be invited to serve as caddie at The Evian Championship.

Previous recipients of the Arnold Palmer Cup exemption include Maverick McNealy (United States, Stanford), Matthias Schwab (Austria, Vanderbilt), and Collin Morikawa (United States, California).


About Arnold Palmer Cup
The Arnold Palmer Cup was co-founded by Arnold Palmer and The Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) and began at the Bay Hill Club & Lodge, Orlando, Fla. in 1997. The event is a Ryder Cup-style tournament featuring the top men’s and women’s university/college golfers matching the United States against a team of International players. The 2018 matches at Evian Resort Golf Club will become the only major tournament which features men and women playing side-by-side as partners.

Since its inception, over 100 former Arnold Palmer Cup alumni have gone on to earn cards on either the PGA or European Tours, 25 have represented Europe or the USA in the Ryder Cup or Presidents Cup, and more than 50 have claimed over 200 victories on the PGA or European Tours. The United States leads the series 11-9-1.

The Arnold Palmer Cup is supported by Arnie’s Army Charitable Foundation. The Arnold Palmer Cup provides a platform for perpetuating Arnold Palmer’s commitment to youth development and the growth of amateur/collegiate golf. For more information, please visit

About Arnie's Army Charitable Foundation
It all began in the 1960’s when Arnold Palmer’s go-for-broke style of golf bolstered a legion of fans, coined by the press as Arnie’s Army. Palmer's charisma and unfailing sense of kindness and thoughtfulness endeared him to millions around the world. Over the past four decades, the Palmer family have contributed time and resources to support their passion for helping others and in so doing have made a profound impact on many lives. Founded in 2015, Arnie’s Army Charitable Foundation has been entrusted to continue Arnold Palmer’s legacy of philanthropy by positively impacting and empowering children and strengthening our communities by investing in health, wellness, and the environment. For more information, or to join Arnie's Army, please visit or contact Chris Kolodinsky at 407-876-3944 or

About Rolex
An unrivalled reputation for quality and expertise
Rolex, a Swiss watch manufacture headquartered in Geneva, is recognized the world over for its expertise and the quality of its products. Its Oyster and Cellini watches, all certified as Superlative Chronometers for their precision, performance and reliability, are symbols of excellence, elegance and prestige. Founded by Hans Wilsdorf in 1905, the brand pioneered the development of the wristwatch and is at the origin of numerous major watchmaking innovations, such as the Oyster, the first waterproof wristwatch, launched in 1926, and the Perpetual rotor self-winding mechanism invented in 1931. Rolex has registered over 400 patents in the course of its history. A truly integrated and independent manufacturing company, Rolex designs, develops and produces in-house all the essential components of its watches, from the casting of the gold alloys to the machining, crafting, assembly and finishing of the movement, case, dial and bracelet. Through philanthropic programmes and a broad palette of sponsorship activities, Rolex is also actively involved in supporting the arts, sports and exploration, and encourages the spirit of enterprise, as well as the conservation of natural environments.