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CHICAGO DISTRICT GOLF ASSOCIATION

For Everyone Who Plays the Game

Midwest Golf House Contact: Casey Richards
11855 Archer Avenue (630) 685-2324
Lemont, IL 60439 crichards@cdga.org
Contact: Tim Merrick
(630) 685-2302
tmerrick@cdga.org
Contact: Jacob Bomeli
(630) 685-2345
jbomeli@cdga.org
 
For Immediate ReleaseJune 29, 2024
 
JACKSON LEADS OVERALL, WOMEN’S DIVISIONS FOLLOWING ADAPTIVE OPEN FIRST ROUND 
 
Saturday, June 29, 2024 - LEMONT, Ill. – Since being diagnosed with scapuloperoneal muscular dystrophy at the age of 19, one of 26-year-old Ryanne Jackson’s (Madeira Beach, Fla. / Neurological & Coordination Impairment) biggest challenges on the golf course is fatigue. As such, one would have expected the lefty to be at a disadvantage during the first round of the Inaugural Chicago Adaptive Open in hot and humid conditions Saturday on Cog Hill Golf & Country Club’s Course No. 3.

Jackson, however, possesses the kryptonite to humidity - she’s from Florida.

“Today was nothing new,” Jackson said with a smirk.

Jackson fired an even-par 72, the best score carded by the 49-golfer field of individuals with an array of physical and mental disabilities. One of just three women in the field, the former Eastern Illinois University golfer, whose MS has weakened her lower legs and shoulder region, countered a double bogey on the par-5 15th with three birdies, including a 4 on the par-5 17th where she found the green in two.

“I was a bit disappointed after the double, but I feel like I really bounced back for the last three holes of the round,” Jackson said.

Jackson is an adaptive golf stalwart, having won the Women’s Overall title in the 2023 U.S. Adaptive Open at Pinehurst. Given her time spent in Charleston competing for the Panthers, she was pleased to see an Illinois stop added to the adaptive golf circuit.

“I was really excited that Chicago was hosting an adaptive event, because I love being up in Illinois,” Jackson, otherwise a lifelong Florida native, said. “I don’t know if I’m the biggest fan of Midwest golf – the rough up here can be pretty tough – but I handled it well out here, and it’s a great track, so I enjoyed it.”

One shot behind Jackson, and co-leading the Overall Men’s division, are Rick Oldach (La Selva Beach, Calif. / Impairment in Both Legs) and Vince Biser (Towson, Md. / Arm Impairment – Unassisted). Both men notched 1-over 73s.

Oldach, the second oldest player in the field at age 73, was keyed by a rock-solid short game, notching two birdies on the afternoon.

“My putting really kept me in it,” Oldach said. “I made every 4-5 footer I needed to make. The condition of the golf course around the greens is super. Chipping and putting on these kinds of conditions is really pleasant.”

A lifetime adaptive athlete after being born with severely clubbed feet, Oldach was driven to compete in this event by family. One of his six children lives in Chicago, giving Oldach the opportunity to display his passion for adaptive golf in front of his daughter and grandson for the first time.

“Adaptive golf, in particular, is meaningful to me,” Oldach said. “I’ve spent my whole life as an adaptive individual. Watching these players is amazing – it’s really emotional.”

Biser, a lefty, estimates that his 73 is one of the best competitive numbers he’s ever posted. A golfer since his youth thanks to his grandfather and father, Biser’s cerebral palsy causes him to swing using only his left arm.

“Pretty much the whole right side of my body is affected,” Biser said. “I basically play golf with one arm.”

The competition will conclude Sunday at Cog Hill. Overall, Overall Men’s, Overall Women’s and Overall Senior awards will be granted, in addition to up to three placings in 16 different Sports Classifications. A $15,000 purse will be awarded to the contestants.

The final round will also be live streamed on YouTube via a partnership with College Golf Network. The stream will feature the 16th and 18th holes and will go live when the first competitors reach No. 16, approximately 1 p.m.
 
Chicago District Golf Association
The Chicago District Golf Association (CDGA) is authorized by the United States Golf Association (USGA) as the governing body for amateur golf in our region. The CDGA is a membership organization consisting of more than 106,000 individual golfers and 400 clubs in Illinois and parts of Indiana, Michigan and Wisconsin. Golfers receive member offers, a Handicap Index® from the USGA® and competitive playing opportunities, while clubs receive Course Rating™ and Slope Rating™ measuring services, turfgrass diagnostics and educational seminars. The CDGA also creates opportunities for everyone to experience the benefits of the game through adaptive, therapeutic and youth Sunshine Programs, with an emphasis on serving disabled and veteran communities.
 
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Chicago District Golf Association
11855 Archer Avenue
Lemont, IL 60439

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