The Irish Open is delighted to unveil the new partner and sponsorship concept for one of the most prestigious titles on The European Tour International Schedule as it moves to the stunning Adare Manor Hotel & Golf Resort in Co. Limerick from 17-20 May. Designed by Robert Trent Jones Snr, Adare Manor is one of Ireland’s finest parkland courses, set on the 840 acre estate of Adare Manor, which opened in 1995.
The luxurious five-star Adare Manor Hotel & Golf Resort, under the ownership of Tom and Judy Kane, will host the Irish Open for the next three years and together with The European Tour, has embraced the new partnership sponsorship model incorporating leading Irish and international sponsors.
As Proud Partners, the Irish Open welcomes Fà¡ilte Ireland, McInerney, Michael McNamara & Company, Roadbridge and Pallas Foods.
Audi Ireland, Limerick County Council, Rolex and Shannon Development all come on board as Official Sponsors.
Brown Thomas, Cutter & Buck, Dooley Car Rentals, Philips, Ricoh and Waterford Crystal join as Official Suppliers.
With the support of Adare Manor, the Proud Partners, Official Sponsors and Official Suppliers, the Irish Open is able to announce a record prize fund of €2.5 million, an increase of €300,000 from 2006.
Tom Kane, managing partner of Adare Manor Hotel & Golf Resort, said, “When Judy and I first considered the possibility of hosting the Irish Open, we were aware that the tournament needed a fresh approach if it was to reclaim its rightful position as one of Europe’s premier events. I am of the strong belief that the national championship deserves, and is worthy, of a standalone brand.
“I believe that we should therefore operate in the same manner as The Open Championship and Masters Tournament and not be reliant on a title sponsor. The corporate sector seems to agree and thanks in no small part to the generous patronage of all our newly announced Proud Partners, Official Sponsors and Official Suppliers, we are in a position to present this year’s tournament as we wished. The tournament will be referred to as the Irish Open, with Adare Manor as its proud host.
“While we will continue to increase prize money over the next three years in order to attract an even higher calibre of player, it’s also our wish that the National Open will once again become the tournament of the people. This is why we have decreased the daily ticket price to €25 and also launched a new Pro-Am concept aimed at the regular amateur golfer.
“The support in recent years for events in Adare Manor such as the Irish Seniors Open and the JP McManus Pro-Am gives a fantastic indication of the sporting culture of the region and I have no doubt that the general public both locally and nationally will get behind this event in the same manner and make the Irish Open an event to remember.”
George O’Grady, chief executive of The European Tour, said, “The Irish Open sits proudly on The European Tour International Schedule with a list of past champions that stands comparison with the best. We congratulate Tom and Judy Kane and the manner in which they have embraced Ireland’s national Open. Their support and commitment to the tournament, along with that of the Proud Partners, Official Sponsors and Official Suppliers who we welcome into The European Tour family today, will ensure the Irish Open continues to go from strength to strength.”
Playing host to the Irish Open is a natural progression for Adare Manor Hotel & Golf Resort, having previously hosted the J P McManus Invitational Pro-Am, the AIB Irish Seniors Open and the Women’s World Cup of Golf. The reputation of the course amongst the professional ranks is growing with some of golf’s biggest names including Thomas Björn, who will be defending the title, Darren Clarke, Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley leading the chorus of praise for the Robert Trent Jones Snr designed, par 72 Championship course.
The Irish Open will be broadcast to a global audience with almost 450 hours of live coverage reaching more than 30 countries and in excess of 100 million homes. Sky will provide coverage in the UK alongside RTE in Ireland.
Tickets are now available with an Adult One Day ticket costing €25, while a Four Day season pass, valid for all four days of the tournament, costs €75. Tickets for Disabled Citizens cost €15, while OAP’s over the age of 65 and juniors under the age of 16 are entitled to free entry when accompanied by an adult. The Pro-Am is free for all spectators.