Trusted Choice Big "I" Junior Classic starts Wednesday

Staff Writer
Chillicothe Times-Bulletin

The Independent Insurance Agents of Illinois will hold its 46th annual state Trusted Choice Big “I” Junior Classic at Lick Creek Golf Course in Pekin.

The statewide tournament, featuring 57 players (45 boys, 12 girls), will be a 36-hole medal play event Wednesday and Thursday, with the top three boys and one girl advancing to the national tournament.

Players from East Peoria, Chllicothe and Metamora are among those in the field.

This year’s national tournament will be Aug. 5-8 at the Pete Dye Golf Club in Bridgeport, W.V.

The Trusted Choice Big “I” National Championship brings together the top 100 boys and 60 girls qualifying from each of the independent insurance agents’ state tournaments held nationwide for a week of playoffs resulting in one boy champion and one girl champion. The entire field is under the age of 19.

The Trusted Choice Big “I” National Championship is one of the largest golf championships in the country with more than 2,000 boys and girls competing in over 300 local and state-qualifying tournaments organized by nearly 200 independent insurance agents.

The months leading up to the Trusted Choice Big “I” National Championship include several grueling rounds against many of the country’s top junior players.

The list of tournament alumni reads like a PGA Tour Who’s Who: Tiger Woods, Phil Michelson, Justin Leonard and Webb Simpson.

In 1993, the Big “I” established a girls’ division to promote similar values among female student-athletes. Some former participants, including champions Beth Bauer (1997), Grace Park (1996) and Cristie Kerr (1994, 1995) are leaving their mark on the sport.