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The Rush is on for the Sunny King Classic in Anniston

Jared Waits keeps an eye on partner Landon Winfrey’s putt during their first year together as Sunny King Charity Classic partners in 2021. (Photo by Brad Young)
Jared Waits keeps an eye on partner Landon Winfrey’s putt during their first year together as Sunny King Charity Classic partners in 2021. (Photo by Brad Young)

Anniston, AL – Waits and Winfrey first official entry in this year’s Sunny King Charity Classic, posting their form 2 seconds after midnight

By Al Muskewitz


Jared Waits, uh, didn’t wait. Spurred by a friend’s insistence he jump right on it when the Sunny King Charity Classic formally opened registration lest he befall the same fate as his buddy last year, Waits hit the send button on his application as soon as midnight arrived.

Electronic registration formally opened for this year’s Classic at midnight Saturday. The registration for Waits and partner Landon Winfrey went through at 12:00.02 a.m., making them officially the first team to enter this year’s Classic.

“I was ready to go to bed,” said Waits, a 29-year-old Oxford physical therapist who registered with an 8-handicap. “Brad (Young) missed it last year and he was hyping me about how quick it was going to fill. I just went ahead and got it ready and left it on my phone and as soon as it struck midnight I submitted it. And then I went to bed.

“What it means is I don’t have to stress about it now.”

This year’s 44th annual Classic is Sept. 15-17 with the traditional formats and courses, and if the last two years since officials moved the event to September is any indication spots will go fast. Last year it sold out in a record two weeks, leaving Waits’ buddy Young to spend nearly two agonizing months on the waiting list.

There were 40 non-sponsor teams registered in the first 30 minutes this year, more than 70 by early afternoon Saturday. The 210-team field is typically split 50-50 between open and sponsor teams. At this rate of return, one tournament official postulated, the field will be full by Monday.

“I don’t think I was quite as worried about it as he was,” said Winfrey, 35, the shop manager for his family’s electrical contracting company and a 6-handicap. “I felt like we could have gotten in, but he wanted to be in for sure and not worry about it – and I really didn’t want to have to worry about it while I was on vacation either, so he took care of us.

“He was on top of his game. Maybe he’ll be on top of his golf game here in a couple months.”

This will be the third straight year Waits and Winfrey will partner in the King. In their first year together they finished T-17 in the Ford Bronco Championship B flight. Last year they finished T-31 in the Mustang Championship flight.

Luckily, after all his waiting, Young got in last year, but he wasn’t taking any chances this year. He heeded his own advice and jumped on it early, too.

“I didn’t think it’d fill up that fast, but I was 13th on the wait list,” Young recalled. “Luckily I got just in a few weeks before it happened, but a lot of my friends didn’t get in. I warned (Waits) a couple weeks ago it was coming up and to be ready on July 1, then I texted him about 8 o’clock last night don’t forget tonight at midnight or first thing in the morning to register. I guess he stayed up until midnight.”

Players can register through the tournament website – www.kingclassic.com. The process isn’t complete without paying the entry fee – $800 per team, including mulligans – or being sponsored.

Gary Wigington and Ty Cole are the defending champs.

Jared Waits keeps an eye on partner Landon Winfrey’s putt during their first year together as Sunny King Charity Classic partners in 2021. (Photo by Brad Young)
Jared Waits keeps an eye on partner Landon Winfrey’s putt during their first year together as Sunny King Charity Classic partners in 2021. (Photo by Brad Young)

 

 

 

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