Thursday, February 20, 2003
It was only a matter of time... From The Golf Channel:
On Tuesday night Brian Kontak, a 31-year-old tour professional from Phoenix with conditional status on this year's Nationwide Tour, told me, "I'm dead serious about trying to qualify for the U.S. Women's Open."
On Wednesday the United States Golf Association, which runs the U.S. Women's Open, responded. Media relations director Craig Smith said, "Last year's application (for the Women's Open) states that the player must be born female and the USGA has no plans to change that on this year's application. Right now, Brian is not eligible and if he sent in an application it would automatically be rejected on that basis."
When told of the USGA's stance, Kontak fired back. "They're obviously doing what they have to do. We'll go from there," said Kontak.
Kontak stopped short of saying that any legal action might be in the works. "I can't answer that right now," he said. "I've got to get my ducks in a row and see where it goes."
Here's The Golf Channel's first story about the bid, which came out the 18th.
UPDATE: Not to say I told you so, but I told you so. That is, I said it would be a second-tier golfer, not a PGA regular. This from the Feb. 18 story:
Kontak has five Canadian Tour victories to his credit and has played in events on the PGA Tour, the Nationwide Tour and the NGA Hooters Tour. He spent much of 2002 on the Gateway Tour.
However, I was wrong about one thing--I thought it would be a second-tier golfer looking for some LPGA money. Kontak says he'll donate any winnings to charity. In fact, a women's charity. Brilliant. From the Feb. 19 story linked above:
"My whole deal is equality," Kontak said. "If we're going to be equal, then let's be equal. I'm not trying to impress anybody. I'm just doing what I feel I need to do.