Media Release JTOG

‘Journey to Olympic Golf’ teed off on October 15th in St. Louis

Corporate-Exec-turned-Golf-Voyager Andy Reistetter is thinking ahead three years to when golf returns to the Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. His goal is to raise $100,000 for the First Tee through a ‘Journey to Olympic Golf.’

The First Tee is an international youth development organization introducing the game of golf and its inherent values to young people.Independent research confirms the youth development programs delivered through Chapters of the First Tee impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf.(https://donate.thefirsttee.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=398, remember to select ‘Journey To Olympic Golf’ on the drop-down menu for the question ‘What inspired you to make a gift today?’)

The venture began on October 15th in St. Louis where golf was last played in the Olympics over a century ago in 1904. Technically the Odyssey started with a Farewell Gathering at the Clubhouse at TPC Sawgrass on Friday, October 11th. Leaving from there Saturday morning at 9 am with a mileage of 127,149, Andy and “The Torch,” his 1992 Infiniti M30 Convertible, first stop was Atlanta, Georgia. There they captured the Olympic Spirit from the 1996 Summer Olympics as they were hosted by Olympian Dennis Berkholtz along with the golfing spirit of Bobby Jones by visiting his grave site, Eastlake GC and playing the Highlands Course at the Atlanta Athletic Club.

The three-month road trip will pass through the Southern United States, Mexico, Central and South America. The tour will pass through 19 countries along the way to Rio and will include a day of volunteerism and a day to play golf at featured golf destinations in each country. The journey will conclude with a flight back to the United States on January 20th to attend the 2014 PGA Show in Orlando where the results of the charitable drive will be announced.

Here is a look of the tour by the numbers:

100,000 dollars to be raised for charity

14,300 miles travelled on roads

1,829 miles, most in a country (Mexico)

550, current number of golf courses in South America

300 miles travelled over water (Darien Gap ferry from Panama to Colombia)

130, current number of golf courses under construction in South America

124 miles, least in a country (Bolivia; In from Peru, out to Chile)

105 days, duration of the trip from St. Louis to Rio de Janeiro to home in Florida

102 years, length of golf’s absence from the Olympics

66 days of travel

54 Andy’s age when teeing off for the ‘Journey to Olympic Golf’ on October 15, 2013

21 rounds of golf planned

19 days of volunteerism planned

19 countries included

1   how many aces by Andy (Kemper Lakes GC, August 28th, 2002, Hole No. 3)

0   Projected number of breakdowns by Andy’s 1992 Infiniti M30 convertible car

‘Journey to Olympic Golf’ is part personal journey to define the Olympic Spirit of Golfers and part golf promotion. Please make your individual or corporate donation directly to The First Tee (https://donate.thefirsttee.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=398, remember to select ‘Journey To Olympic Golf’ on the drop-down menu for the question ‘What inspired you to make a gift today?’). Reistetter will donate 20% of any revenues received from sponsors.

Reistetter, who has travel the PGA TOUR the last six seasons as a freelance golf writer and broadcast assistant will be making the trip in his vintage 1992 Infiniti M30 convertible. Inspired by Ben Hogan and his “Follow the Sun” perspective, the lifelong golfer will be following the sun south on an unchartered course.

From St. Louis, Reistetter travelled to Fort Smith, Arkansas to visit with Jack Fleck, the nearly 92-year old, 1955 U.S. Open Champion and present him with a replica 1904 Olympic Golf Gold Medal. On the way to Texas he will undoubtedly get lost in the Texas Triangle (Dallas, Houston and San Antonio) before entering Mexico at Nuevo Laredo. There he will pick up the Pan-American Highway and travel directly south through Mexico City, site of the 1968 Summer Olympics. With stops in each Central America country, the Darien Gap will necessitate a ferry ride from Panama to Colombia.

Once on South American land he will head east through Venezuela and double back west to Bogotá, Colombia. From there he will reach the West Coast through Ecuador. Heading south west of the Andes through Peru and Chile he will reach Santiago then head east to Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay.  The circuitous route finally enters Brazil from the west arriving at his destination, Rio de Janeiro with a week to explore the host city of the 2016 Summer Games.

While the Olympic golf course for both the Women and Men competitions, designed by Gil Hanse, is under construction Reistetter hopes to get a glimpse of the property and routing. The flight to Orlando for the PGA Show takes 14 hours and is only 4,359 miles as the bird flies. A lot shorter than the 105 days and 14,300 miles trip south to capture the ‘Olympic Spirit for Golfers.’

Wondering if the 1992 Infiniti M30 will make it all the way to Rio de Janeiro? Or what will happen to the car when it arrives in Rio de Janeiro. Trip updates and videos will be posted on www.JourneyToOlympicGolf.com and you may contact Andy at AndyReistetter@gmail.com for further information.

Please donate to the First Tee today! (https://donate.thefirsttee.org/sslpage.aspx?pid=398, remember to select ‘Journey To Olympic Golf’ on the drop-down menu for the question ‘What inspired you to make a gift today?’)

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