18 to Remember
ProAm LPGA Golf Tournament
April 25, 2022
Palos Verdes Golf Club
With the IMSA season in full swing, much of the Racing to End Alzheimer’s Foundation’s focus has been on motorsports. But on April 25th, Founder Phil Frengs and his crew turned their attention to a different kind of driving…and chipping and putting. The highly anticipated 18 to Remember Golf Tournament benefitting UCLA’s Alzheimer’s and Dementia Care Program brought together amateurs and LPGA pros for a day of golf and philanthropy that resulted in over $100,000 raised for the cause.
Charity, Competition and Camaraderie
A far cry from the usual high-speed, high-adrenaline scenes from the racetrack, the 18 to Remember ProAm golf tournament was held at Palos Verdes Golf Club’s idyllic, peaceful course. The venue’s rolling hills and world-class course design, along with unparalleled Southern California spring weather, promised a day to remember for everyone involved.
Despite the serenity of the location, a healthy dose of friendly rivalry made for an exhilarating event. Carrie Forsyth, Head Coach for UCLA Women’s Golf for 23 years and counting, recruited an impressive roster of 11 LPGA pros (10 of them former UCLA players) to lead a foursome of amateurs each in a rousing round of competitive golf.
Following lunch at the club, participants were paired with pros Fatima Fernandez Cano, Brianna Do, Tiffany Joh, Alison Lee, Mo Martin, Lee Lopez, Ryann O’Toole, Louise Ridderstrom, Maiya Tanaka, Patty Tavatanakit and Mariajo Uribe – all of whom are women at the pinnacle of the sport. Add dozens of highly motivated amateurs, and there was plenty of high-quality skill and high-spirited camaraderie to go around.
A Win, On and Off the Course
Conditions at this hidden gem of a course favor the accurate, as natural hazards and westerly ocean breezes present unique challenges on each hole. Fortunately for the winning team of Roger Stewart, David Wright, Jim Flick and Peter Fortune (led by Tiffany Joh), a combination of pure swings and effective strategy from tee box to green carried the day. Coming in a respectable second were Jack Yeh, Chad Hammel, Alex Martinez and Stephen Fraser (led by Ryann O’Toole) – with the next three teams vying and tying (!) for third.
Following the afternoon’s exertions, attendees retreated to the club for some well-deserved R&R. The Racing to End Alzheimer’s tribute car, a rare Porsche 718 Spyder in full racing livery, was on display throughout the tournament (and during the LA Open at Wilshire Country Club the week before). Pros and amateurs alike took the opportunity to add the names of loved ones affected by Alzheimer’s to the tribute car and No. 22 racecar through generous and heartfelt donations.
Between servings of an incredible dinner prepared by a Cordon-Bleu trained executive chef, guests were invited to participate in a silent auction for a tempting array of prizes donated by the likes of United Talent Agency, The Porsche Experience Center, UCLA Athletics and MNML Golf. Kay Cockerill (former pro golfer, UCLA grad and on-air announcer for the Golf Channel) acted as emcee for the event – introducing the players, informing and entertaining the crowd, and generating excitement and support for the cause.
Fore – and Forward
Given the nature of an event like this, it’s no surprise that there were a wide range of emotions at play throughout the afternoon. Competitiveness, compassion, frustration, excitement, humor, remembrance, resolve. Yet, as participants came together to dine and mingle at the end of the day, an overwhelming feeling of fellowship filled the room. It was palpable in each shared laugh, handshake and conversation.
The essential fact is that everyone at 18 to Remember came together for a purpose. In their presence and generosity, we saw a powerful expression of what it means to join forces to achieve something greater than any of us could accomplish alone. Here at Racing to End Alzheimer’s, our mission remains what it has always been – to end the scourge of Alzheimer’s in our lifetimes. On this lovely and lively day, that ambitious goal seemed more achievable than ever.