From its start in 1950, the Press Thornton Future Masters has become a proving ground for golf’s brightest junior stars, as well as home for sportsmanship, the thrill of competition and the love for the game of golf.
“He wanted to give young boys an opportunity to play and not compete against men, so he started it, he got some friends together and they came together and decided the best thing to call it would be the Press Thornton Future Masters,” Tournament Coordinator Angelia Turner said.
As with any competition, there can only be one winner, but one dad shares a message that Dr. Thornton Jr. shared with the players before they hit the course.
“Just make sure you keep a good attitude the entire time as Dr. Thornton said. Your behavior on the golf course is going to be remembered a lot more than your good or bad play, so the biggest thing is just to have fun and keep a good attitude,” Georgia native Tom Bradford said.
Turner says during her time with the future masters, her favorite part is being able to get to know the kids.
“I’ve been doing this for 23 years, so I’ve got a long time invested in it, and seeing the kids I worked with back in those days now have families of their own, whether they’re going on to the PGA Tour or what they do in the business world. Just getting to see them grow in their life and to know that I had a little part it in and to know them and their experiences,” Turner said.
Mr. Thornton’s dream of the Future Masters not only being about golf, but about the spirit of competition, friendships made, sportsmanship on the course, and the challenge of preserving over a half-century of growing golf being realized.