Broncos legend to follow U.S. Senior Open qualifier with state event.
Elway, who finished runner-up in the event’s low-amateur category in 2014 and 2016, will attempt to capture low-am honors when he tees off at 1:00 pm on May 30 and 8:05 a.m. on May 31.
The competition will be stiff on the amateur side, with Colorado Golf Hall of Famer Kent Moore and big-time players such as David Delich, 2017 CGA Senior champ Steve Ivan, Robert Polk, Guy Mertz, Sean Forey and defending low-amateur Albert Johnson in the mix.
Elway, who has never missed a cut in the senior event, came in second to Moore in 2014 and was T2 with him in 2016. Both are Cherry Hills Country Club members.
The professional field consists of equally stellar players vying for their share of the $50,000 purse. PGA Tour winners Keith Clearwater, Donnie Hammond, Guy Boros and Larry Rinker as well as Champions Tour winners R.W. Eaks and John Riegger join tour veteran Skip Kendall and 10 other past champions competing for the $8,500 first prize.
Other notable Colorado professionals include 4-time Colorado Open/Colorado Sr. Open champion Bill Loeffler of the Links at Highlands Ranch, 2017 Colorado PGA Section champion John Ogden of Cherry Hills, Rick Cole of Eaton Country Club (6th in 2017) and Dale Smigelsky of Collindale (T-7).
“He’s such an icon,” says Colorado Open Golf Foundation Chief Executive Officer Kevin Laura about Elway. “Having him play in the senior open always brings more media attention because he’s so competitive in our events and in the American Century Celebrity Golf Championship in Tahoe.”
Laura thinks the man known as No. 7 will be “more relaxed” for the CoBank Colorado Senior Open because of the experience of playing in the U.S. Senior Open qualifier just two days before. “It’ll be a hard qualifier,” he says, adding that Elway’s chances of qualifying are “possible, not probable. It all depends on how he putts on those greens at The Broadmoor, and with George Solich, who caddied there and got an Evans Scholarship, on his bag, you never know.”
The winner of the CoBank Colorado Senior Open earns a coveted invitation to the $250,000 CoBank Colorado Open at Green Valley Ranch July 26-29. The winner of that championship takes home $100,000.