The Open 2017
Jul 18th, 2017
Henrik Stenson surprises young fan
As he supports global drive to recruit young golfers
Open sponsor HSBC has enlisted the support of the current Open Champion Henrik Stenson to help drive participation in golf around the world. And he had a little surprise for a young golf fan.
Stenson is helping drive signups for ‘HSBC Hour’, an initiative offering an hour of free golf to young people and families during the week of The Open.
Part of HSBC’s ‘Anyone’s Game’ campaign, ‘HSBC Hour’ sees the bank team up with The Golf Foundation, Club Golf Scotland and Confederation of Golf in Ireland to give thousands of young people and their families an introduction to the sport during the week of The Open (17-23 July).
This year’s edition will see around 300 clubs take part in the UK and Ireland as well as HSBC Hours taking place in Hong Kong and the UAE, with over 2,000 people set to receive free golf tuition.
Henrik Stenson is teaming up with HSBC for a number of activities to promote this year’s Open. In lending his support to the HSBC Hour, Stenson will conduct his very own HSBC Hour coaching session for local young people at the HSBC Golf Zone in the Spectator Village during Open week.
In addition, an innovative 360 virtual reality (VR) experience will be at the HSBC Golf Zone for all spectators to try at Royal Birkdale. The VR experience will enable fans to relive the defining victory of Stenson’s career as he won his first Claret jug at Royal Troon.
Stenson himself came down to the HSBC Golf Zone in order to surprise a young fan, Jamie Russell (7), whilst he was enjoying the virtual reality experience.
To further encourage participation, HSBC is challenging golf fans to take part in the #10StepChip challenge on social media. The challenge, which asks fans to attempt a chip into any object, from 10 paces, in any setting, is designed to be as accessible and fun as possible for experienced and new golfers alike.
Prizes are on offer for the most creative uploads to @HSBC_Sport. The challenge will also be a feature at HSBC Hours with golf Pros encouraging participants to have a go. The campaign has seen a wide variety of athletes including Gary Player, Danny MacAskill, Judy Murray, Tim Henman, Thomas Bjorn, and George Gregan taking part, as well as Henrik Stenson himself.
Current Open Champion Henrik Stenson said: “It is important for the game of golf that we continue to reach out to new fans and encourage more people to get into the sport. HSBC Hour is a brilliant initiative that aims to bring down the barriers that can stop young people trying golf. I hope that my support helps more young people get into the game and who knows maybe one day see their name on the Claret Jug.
Winning The Open last year was the highlight of my career and just an incredible experience. I’m excited to be working with HSBC this year and was delighted that they took me back to Royal Troon to relive the most memorable day of my career. I’m also excited that fans can share this journey with me both at The Open and through social media.”