‘Large step’: Cameron Champ amazed by Lee Elder second at Masters
AUGUSTA, Ga. – A handful of present and previous Masters rivals made their strategy to the primary tee early Thursday morning at Augusta Nationwide to look at historical past. Amongst them was Cameron Champ, one among simply 4 Black members on the PGA Tour, who stood in amazement as Lee Elder, the primary Black participant to tee it up within the Masters, helped kick off this 85th version as an honorary starter alongside Jack Nicklaus and Gary Participant.
“It was simply superb for them to acknowledge Lee being the primary African-American to play within the Masters,” Champ mentioned on the vary afterward. “Only for the Black neighborhood and Black golfers and minority golfers basically, that’s an enormous step in the proper route. And I do know for him, it meant quite a bit, particularly for his household. I do know his well being isn’t too good proper now, however I do know he wasn’t going to overlook this for the world.
For me once more, it’s simply superb to see.”
Champ mentioned he had the prospect of sitting down and speaking with Elder on Wednesday. Regardless of being simply 25 years previous, Champ has been essentially the most outspoken participant on Tour on the subject of present social and racial points. Champ mentioned Elder reminds him of his late grandfather, Mack, who picked up the sport in segregated Texas and later taught his grandson how you can play.
“Lee’s simply a tremendous, loving man, form of the identical method my grandfather was,” Champ mentioned. “He simply has a lot love and caring for others, regardless that how a lot they endured throughout their time once they have been youthful, they usually got here out the other method than what most individuals would suppose would’ve occurred. For me, he’s somebody I look as much as, who I attempt to take issues from and form of study and form of work out my true id as a person. … My grandfather, these have been the fellows he watched and the fellows I do know he seemed as much as within the sport.
“Clearly, it might’ve been superb if my grandfather was nonetheless alive to see this. However for Lee to set the instance and set the pathway for African-American golfers, this morning was simply superb and an enormous second.”