Regions Charity Classic

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The Regions Charity Classic (formerly the Bruno's Memorial Classic) was a regular event on the USPGA's "Champions Tour" (formerly the "Senior Tour") established by the Bruno family in 1992. The Bruno's Memorial Classic was named in honor of Angelo and Lee Bruno, who died in a plane crash just after the first tournament was announced. The first 14 tournaments were held at the Greystone Golf and Country Club.

2006 brought a new title sponsor, Regions Bank, and a new venue, the Robert Trent Jones Golf Trail course at the Ross Bridge Resort. Over 18 years, the tournament has raised more than $9 million for the Regions Charity Classic Foundation. Ronnie Bruno is president of the foundation and the Bruno family holds four seats while Regions Financial Corporation appointed six members. Regions' Bill Askew serves as chairman of the foundation's board.

The University of Alabama's Center for Business and Economic Research estimated the total economic impact of the event at $24.7 million.

In 2011 the event was replaced with the Regions Tradition, a "major" tournament on the Champions Tour, played at the Shoal Creek Golf and Country Club.

2010

The 2010 tournament was held May 12-16. Dan Forsman shot a course record 62 on Saturday on the way to a three-stroke win at 20 under par. Naomichi "Joe" Ozaki and Peter Senior tied for second place.

2009

The 2009 tournament, held May 13-17, was shortened to 36 holes due to heavy rains. Keith Fergus won by three strokes over Gene Jones. Bob Tway made his Champions Tour debut at the event.

2008

The 2008 tournament began on May 14 with the announcement that Regions would remain the title sponsor until at least 2011. In honor of the tournament, the Regions Center was illuminated with a golf scene on its east and west facades during the month of May. Andy Bean won the event. Others participating in the classic were Bernhard Langer, Tom Kite, Hale Irwin, Jay Haas, Loren Roberts, Ben Crenshaw, Scott Hoch and Jerry Pate.

2007

Brad Bryant became the first repeat winner of the Regions Charity Classic which was held on May 17-20. He sank a 12'-7" putt on the third playoff hole to eliminate R. W. Eaks and take the trophy with a 12-under score of 204. Tom Kite and Denis Watson tied for third at 205. Scott Hoch, who led after the first round, finished in 5th with a score of 206.

2006

The 2006 Regions Charity Classic was held at Ross Bridge on May 3-7 and won by Brad Bryant, who capitalized on late bogeys by Mark McNulty to finish two strokes ahead with a 17-under 199 for the tournament. McNulty finished in second, Dave Edwards third, and Jim Thorpe fourth.

Other notable participants included former champions Jay Sigel, Hubert Green, Larry Nelson, Hale Irwin, Bruce Fleisher, John Jacobs, Graham Marsh, Larry Nelson, Jay Sigel and D. A. Weibring along with notable golfers Ben Crenshaw, Raymond Floyd, Tom Kite, Jerry Pate, J. C. Snead, Craig Stadler, Curtis Strange, Lee Trevino, and crowd-favorite Chi-Chi Rodriguez, making his first tour start since 2004. The field totalled around 80 players. Floyd withdrew before the final round with hip problems.

Principal sponsors of the event are Regions Bank, Bruno's, Cingular, Delta Air Lines, the Andrews Institute, NCR Corporation, the City of Hoover, the Hoover Chamber of Commerce, and Luckie & Company. It was nationally televised on the Golf Channel. The purse was $1.6 million and the tournament raised $680,000 for charitable organizations in Alabama.

1992

The first Bruno's Memorial Classic was held in August, 1992 at the Greystone Golf and Country Club. George Archer won the inaugural tournament.

Champions

  • 2010, Dan Forsman (20 under, 196)
  • 2009, Keith Fergus (12 under, 132)
  • 2008, Andy Bean, (13 under, 203)
  • 2007, Brad Bryant (12 under, 204)
  • 2006, Brad Bryant (17 under, 199)
  • 2005, D. A. Weibring (15 under, 201)
  • 2004, Bruce Fleisher (7 stroke victory)
  • 2003, Tom Jenkins
  • 2002, Sammy Rachels (15 under)
  • 2001, Hale Irwin (21 under)
  • 2000, John Jacobs
  • 1999, Larry Nelson
  • 1998, Hubert Green (13 under)
  • 1997, Jay Sigel
  • 1996, John Bland
  • 1995, Graham Marsh (201 total)
  • 1994, Jim Dent (201 total)
  • 1993, Bob Murphy (203 total)
  • 1992, George Archer

References

  • Thornton, William (May 14, 2008) "Regions Financial Corp. to stay as golf classic's title sponsor 3 more years." Birmingham News
  • Ray, Tiffany (April 21, 2006) "Regions, Ross Bridge lay claim to golf classic." Birmingham Business Journal
  • Williams, Roy L. (May 18, 2008) "Regions Charity Classic pours $24.7 million into state, study finds." Birmingham News

External links