Inspired by the camaraderie and good will inherent to The Presidents Cup, Pasadera Country Club in Monterey, Calif., hosted a match last week featuring some of the most influential business leaders from China against business and golf industry leaders from the United States. The Pasadera Cup coincided with Thursday’s start of The Presidents Cup in Melbourne, Australia, and after a day of spirited play by 48 participants, the US team edged the Chinese by a single point to take the victory.
Using an individual Stableford format, and counting the best 10 scores from each side, the final tally was US 378, China 377.
Most of the participants visiting from China were members of the China Entrepreneur Club (CEC), a 5-year-old group launched by 31 of the most influential entrepreneurs, economists and diplomats in China. CEC members are pioneers in their respective fields and the most vigorous representatives in the new Chinese economy. As the most authoritative and influential commercial leaders club in China, CEC is dedicated to elevating itself to be one of the world’s most successful non-profit organizations. CEC believes that the spirit of entrepreneurship is essential to the promotion of comprehensive social development and is devoted to enhancing the important role played by Chinese enterprises in the sustainable development of China and the world.
Captaining the Chinese/CEC team was Niu Gensheng, founder of Mengniu Dairy Group-the Chinese national leader in the dairy industry-and recognized as one of the few people in the world to have donated all his shares of company stock to a non-profit foundation. The US team was captained by Paul Spengler, executive vice president of the Pebble Beach Company, as well as a member at Pasadera. Four-time Presidents Cup captain and Pasadera course designer Jack Nicklaus served as an honorary event host.
Pasadera Country Club opened June 11, 2000, five days before the Golden Bear played his final shots in the 2000 US Open at nearby Pebble Beach Golf Links. Pasadera is now owned by the China-based HNA Group and Dr. Guang Yang, a well-known and influential Chinese investor.
"It is always a thrill for me to return to the courses and clubs I designed, and this visit was a reminder of how special a golf course exists at Pasadera," said Nicklaus, who was honored after the competition with a cake celebrating the recent 50th anniversary of the day he turned professional. "We are proud of the respect and rightful place the club has earned in a golf-rich area such as the Monterey Peninsula. More important we hope one day Pasadera can serve as a bridge between the US and China, and a venue at which our countries can conduct business. The game of golf has the wonderful ability to unite people and bridge cultures, and that was on full display during the Pasadera Cup."