The 15th Annual Reno-Tahoe Open tees off Thursday at Montreux Golf & Country Club, a Jack Nicklaus-designed course in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountain range in Reno, Nev. The tournament is the PGA TOUR’s only event with a Modified Stableford scoring format, meaning rather than counting the total number of strokes taken as in typical stroke play golf, points are scored based on the number of strokes taken at each hole. Good play earns points and poor play takes away points, and unlike conventional tournament golf, the objective is to have the highest score. It’s no wonder 132 PGA TOUR members, including 53 winners and 10 major championship winners, are in this week’s field for the only west coast Tour event held in the summer.
The roll call of major champions includes: two-time Open Championship winner and 2008 PGA Champion Padraig Harrington, 2008 Masters Champion Trevor Immelman, 2003 Masters Champion Mike Weir, two-time U.S. Open Champion Lee Janzen, 2003 PGA Championship winner Shaun Micheel, 2002 PGA Championship winner Rich Beem, 2001 PGA Championship winner David Toms, 1997 PGA Championship winner Davis Love III, 2001 Open Champion David Duval, and 2003 Open Championship winner Ben Curtis. Eight past Reno-Tahoe Open winners are also competing in the tournament, including defending champion J.J. Henry, who is looking to become only the second man in the 14-year history of the Reno-Tahoe Open to successfully defend his title.
“It’s always one of my best weeks through the summer months,” said Henry, whose father played in numerous British and U.S. amateur tournaments.
“It’s a great event. I’ve been looking forward to coming back for a couple weeks. It’s arguably one of the most picturesque venues we play all year.”
At 7,472 yards, Montreux Golf & Country Club is the third-longest course on the PGA Tour and it has been rated the 6th-most difficult among all PGA Tour events. The course opened in May 1998 and Golf Digest voted it among the 10 Best New Private Courses that year. The course also ranked within the top-10 courses in Nevada in Golf Digest’s 2013-2014 Best in State list.
"Montreux is a very special piece of property," Nickalus said. "It’s got great variety. With the great trees, streams, and mountains in the backdrop, it’s also a beautiful setting. It is a fantastic place to play an event. It’s a strong golf course, a good golf course. It’s a course I’m very proud of, and I’m sure the players on the Tour will love playing it."
Tune in to the Golf Channel to watch this one-of-a-kind PGA TOUR event this Thursday through Sunday from 7:00-9:00 p.m. ET. For more information on the tournament, visit renotahoeopen.com. For more information on the course, visit montreuxgolf.com.