Report from the 16th Mercedes-Benz - Cole Haan Cup

Team Europe retains the Cup!
EU Captain Carl Eklund receives the trophy from Stefan Albrecht, Mercedes-Benz Japan and Ryan Hart, Cole Haan.

The European and North American business communities in Japan held their 16th golf tournament, the North America - Europe Golf Challenge in Japan, at Atsugi Kokusai Country Club on 5 October 2018.

With Mercedes Benz Japan and Cole Haan Japan as the title sponsors and 29 other sponsors, the tournament brought together 155 players from the American and Canadian Chambers of Commerce on one team and the Chambers and members of European Business Council on the other team. Playing the new peoria (shin-peria) scoring system and calculating an average score from best 80% of each team, the European team came out on top by 1.3 strokes (76.5 vs. 77.8 for the North American team). The North American team has now nine wins versus seven for the European team.


The event attracted 155 players, including 20 ladies. The Europeans had 79 players, North-Americans 76.
The players represented about 15 different nations. The Japanese made up the largest group, with 83 players (54%), followed by 19 Americans, 11 Canadians, 9 Brits, 8 Finns, 7 Germans, 4 Swedes and 28 representing about 8 other nationalities.

Counting by chambers the American Chamber had 58 players, followed by the Finnish Chamber with 22, Canadian - 18, German - 14, British - 10, Dutch - 8, and Swedish - 7.

Golfers of all levels took part, from scratch players to high handicappers and gross scores ranged from 75 (Dean Rogers) to 156. 21 players scored a gross of less than 90, but also 18 had over 120.

Charity component

Also this year the tournament's fundraising was again directed to the YMCA Challenged Children Project (CCP). In addition to collection boxes the effort included Charity Shot Challenges on the par-3 7th hole supported by Cole Haan and on the par-3 10th supported by Mercedes-Benz. Those who donated 1,000 yen and hit the green got a a prize.

The Charity activities at the course brought in a total of 285,000 yen. In addition all surplus over operating costs, approx. 650,000 yen, will been donated, bringing the total charity contribution to over 900,000 yen.
The YMCA Challenged Children Fund and the organizers very much appreciate the players kind contributions.

Sponsors and Prizes

The event had 31 sponsors, including the title sponsors Mercedes-Benz Japan and Cole Haan Japan. Thanks to this, we were able to supply tasty and refreshing food and drink throughout the day and had many quality skill and drawing prizes to give away.

Apart from the beautiful Hoya crystal Cup to the winning team and a crystal trophy for the winner of the individual competition (from Mercedes-Benz Japan) and a trophy for the Ladies' Champion (from Cole Haan Japan) were given out. Notable prizes included a Chanel bracelet, a pair of Business Class tickets to USA from United, a pair of Business Class tickets to Europe from Finnair, a pair of Business Class tickets to North America from Air Canada, who also provided golf balls for the goodies bags, and a pair of Economy Class tickets to Europe from Swiss International Airlines. They also provided a sleeve of golf balls for the goodies bags. Warsteiner provided beer for the course and prize ceremony as well as for the After-Party on 11 October, and also donated money to qualify as Platinum sponsor. New Era provided original one-of-a-kind Mercedes-Benz - Cole Haan Cup 2018 golf caps for all players.

TaylorMade provided golfing goods and also provided the prize for the Driving Contest on No. 13. Häfele a grill and two Heliotents and high-end napkins for the goodies bags and Philips 8 advanced home appliances as performance prizes.

Grand Hyatt Tokyo, DoubleTree by Hilton Naha, Hilton Osaka, Hilton Tokyo Bay and Conrad Tokyo all gave out excellent accommodations, Genki Art provided two on-location portrait photo sessions, STIHL several of their products, Takara Shuzo sparkling sake for the goodies bags, Titleist golf goods and FusionGOL web hosting services.

The cash sponsors were; Lufthansa (Gold), K&L Gates (Silver), Asian Tigers Mobility (Bronze), CDAC (Bronze), Curvature (Bronze), Pipeline Security (Bronze), Robert Walters (Bronze, also green repair tools for goodies bags). The cash contributions were key to the events success as it enabled us to improve the drink and food service at the event, provide free bus service and cover other costs related to organizing the tournament (e.g. logo golf balls, trophies, etc.).

Apart from the trophies, Mercedes-Benz and Cole Haan prizes for the four Near Pin competitions and several items each for the "Goodies Bags". They also covered the cost for the administration, web site and costs for posters, signboards, pocket guides, scorecards, etc.

A big Thank You to all the sponsors. We couldn't have done it without you!


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