(ORLANDO, Fla.) – The U.S. team of wounded veterans to compete in On Course Foundation’s 2022 Simpson Cup, August 28-31 at Baltusrol Golf Club in Springfield, New Jersey has been finalized.
The competitors comprising the defending champion U.S. team are Patrick Burke, 37, Massachusetts; Dathan Edwards, 54, Washington, DC; Alexander Glenn-Camden, 32, California; John Goudie, 46, Florida; Nick Kimmel, 32, California; Jake Nelson, 38, Texas; Steve Ogletree, 58, Virginia; Chad Pfeifer, 41, Idaho; Clinton Romesha, 41, North Dakota; Shauna Snyder, 55, Missouri; Mike Stafford, 50, Mississippi; Todd Tongue, 53, New York; Charles Young, 41, Maryland. The U.S. Captain is Marty Caraway, 41, Maryland.
Their U.K. rivals are ages 35 to 60 and include Kate Surman, the team’s only female who is making her second Simpson Cup appearance.
The four-day event features two days of Ryder Cup-style matches between 13 golfers per team. The first day’s battle is better-ball match play with six points at stake and the second showcases 13 singles, straight match play with 13 points at stake. The first team to reach 10 points wins the Simpson Cup. The competition is flanked by emotional opening and closing ceremonies a la the Ryder Cup and Olympics.
Chad Pfeifer, an army veteran who persevered to overcome the loss of his left leg above the knee to become a scratch golfer, anchors the U.S. team. He finished third in the 2022 U.S. Adaptive Open and first among competitors with physical impairments.
Shauna Snyder is the team’s only female and 2022 marks the second time she qualified for a Simpson Cup. She overcame complex back, neck, shoulder and hip injuries from more than years in the Army amid psychological difficulties assimilating into society upon retirement from service.
“While we battle against each other to make the U.S. team and against our U.K. competition, the camaraderie among the players is extraordinary,” says Snyder. “The military bonds will live forever and the support we give one another on and off the course year-round to live happy, productive lives is irreplaceable.”
Nick Kimmel is among the miraculous Simpson Cup stories. An IED explosion in Afghanistan left him without both legs above knee and his left arm above the elbow. A golfer at an early age, he was “tortured” about the notion of never playing golf again.
“The desire wasn’t there, and the primary thought was that missing limbs would cause me to sit on the sidelines forever,” says Kimmel. “Then I learned about On Course Foundation and its members prompted me to not feel sorry for myself, overcome the physical and mental pain by thinking positively, and get back into the swing of things.
“Early on, I struggled playing with one hand holding onto the club for a whole round. I tried to figure out how to hit a ball with a lie below my feet. It’s like trying to hit a golf ball with all your weight on your heels.”
Entering this year’s 10th Simpson Cup, the U.S. won five matches and the U.K. four. Prior to Baltusrol – site of seven U.S. Open, two PGA Championship and two U.S. Women’s Open tournaments –TPC Sawgrass, Royal Lytham & St. Annes, Congressional, Royal St. George’s, Oak Hill, Royal Birkdale, Maidstone, St. Andrews and The Creek served as Simpson Cup hosts.
The Simpson Cup is named after On Course Foundation founder John Simpson, the longtime business manager for Nick Faldo, Vijay Singh, Bernard Langer, Nick Price and other Tour players. As a child, he was stricken with polio that to this day renders his left leg nonfunctional. Simpson’s disability, and his speaking with injured veterans at Headley Court in the U.K. in 2010, led him to marry golf and goodwill, ultimately creating On Course Foundation.
“The Simpson Cup showcases the unique position of golf as one of the few sports where players of all skills and abilities can play together on a level playing field, thanks to the official golf handicap system,” says Simpson. “It is the pinnacle event on our program calendar and is a major mechanism for On Course Foundation to raise awareness and funds.”
On Course Foundation helps active and retired, injured Service members develop playing abilities while teaching career skills to work in the golf industry. It then places them in jobs with major companies like Callaway and Invited (formerly ClubCorp) as well as at golf courses, country clubs and resorts coast to coast. More than 2,000 wounded veterans have benefitted from On Course Foundation learning programs in the U.S. and Europe since 2010.
About On Course Foundation
With offices in Orlando and London, On Course Foundation helps wounded, injured and sick military veterans use golf to facilitate their transitions back into society. Founded in 2010 by John Simpson – former agent to Nick Faldo and 17 major tournament winners – the organization breathes newfound confidence into more than 2,000 members. Education focuses on the myriad facets of embarking on a career in golf with full-time job placements at Callaway, ClubCorp, Marriott Vacations, TaylorMade and other golf companies, golf courses, clubs and resorts. Most members were first introduced to golf by On Course Foundation where they learned playing skills, overcoming lost limbs, mobility and mental acuity, and other physical and psychological debilitations. On Course Foundation’s pinnacle event is the annual Simpson Cup that pits 13-person teams from the U.S. and U.K. against one another in Ryder Cup-style matches where many competitors amazingly sport low single-digit handicaps.