Notah Begay III, Rickie Fowler Lead Team USA to NB3 Challenge Win
Rickie Fowler and Notah Begay III started the day wearing matching blue shirts, something that was pointed out during the media pre-challenge conference, but by the end of the day the duo along with Gary Woodland and Bo Van Pelt claimed the win for Team U.S.A., shooting 21-under par, during the 2013 Notah Begay III Foundation Challenge at Atunyote Golf Club in Verona, New York on August 28.
Begay mentioned at the early morning conference that there were no matching white socks, and that he said no to orange as the 12 PGA Tour golfers answered questions according to their tee times.
“I tried to get him into Cardinal red but he wasn’t having it,” Begay joked in reference to his days at Stanford.
Three teams competed in the sixth annual challenge this year, besides Team U.S.A. there was Team Asia represented by James Hahn, John Huh, K.J. Choi and Charlie Wi; and Team International represented by Nicolas Colsaerts, Henrik Stenson, Charl Schwartzel, and Lee Westwood.
The combined, best-ball challenge saw competitors from six countries participate to raise awareness and funds to benefit the mission of the NB3 Foundation: to address the epidemics of childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes impacting Native American children, and to empower those children and help them realized their potential as tomorrow’s leaders.
Some 4,000 fans were on hand for the charitable event which saw clear blue skies for most the challenge. Two days earlier, NB3 announced that Tiger Woods, who was scheduled to compete, had to drop out of the challenge following an injury on Sunday at The Barclays. Filling in for the injured Woods on a short notice was Woodland.
“Year after year, this event serves as a unique platform to raise awareness for the disparities in resources and support facing Native American communities,” said Begay, the fundraiser’s host, four-time PGA TOUR winner and NBC/Golf Channel Analyst. “The combination of humbling support, financial contributions and strategic partnerships with world-class golfers, Oneida Indian Nation and loyal fans is so powerful, and truly invaluable, in driving our mission to reverse the obesity and type 2 diabetes epidemic among Native children. I’m incredibly grateful to everyone who helps us with this mission.”
The NB3 Challenge is the largest fundraiser of its kind, and has seen its underlying goal realized when all proceeds are channeled to launch, sustain and expand programming to combat health issues threatening Native children – more than 15,000 of whom have benefited from NB3F programs to date. NB3F engages these young people through soccer, golf, health and wellness programs.
“Today we played for a reason greater than our love of sport,” Fowler said following the impressive win. “We put our competitive spirits toward the positive goal of helping Notah and his foundation address the fact that one-in-two Native American children will be diagnosed with type 2 diabetes in their lifetime. Congratulations to my teammates, all of the competitors, and particularly Notah, not just for hosting a fantastic event, but for his relentless work on this issue.”
The NB3 Foundation has quickly established itself as a leader in research, advocacy and strategic grantmaking. The foundation continues to build solid partnerships with organizations, communities and businesses that have the same objectives in mind.
“The partnership between the Notah Begay III Foundation and the Oneida Indian Nation is defined by a shared passion for bettering the lives of future generations of Native leaders,” Ray Halbritter, Oneida Nation representative and CEO of Nation Enterprises, parent company of Indian Country Today Media Network said. “We are honored to be a part of a premier event that provides unmatched programming to help children lead active lives.”