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Fewer Amateurs To Take Part In 2012 Humana Challenge

The desert's longtime PGA Tour event, formerly known as the Bob Hope Classic, gets a major structure change, and a new focus.

It’s more than just a name change for the 2012 Humana Challenge.  

The PGA Tour event, formerly known as the Bob Hope Classic, has partnered with the William J. Clinton Foundation and new sponsor Humana, to focus on health care and well-being.  

Major changes to the tournament structure were also announced on Tuesday.  The tournament has been shortened to four days, putting it in line with other PGA Tour events.   The former four-course format, which at times had stretched from Palm Springs to Bermuda Dunes, has also been narrowed to three La Quinta courses.  

The tournament field itself will be feature 144 professionals, teamed with 144 amateurs for the first three days, rotating between the La Quinta Country Club, and the Palmer and Nicklaus courses at PGA West.  The final round on Sunday will be for the professionals only.  

The number of “celebrity” players will also be trimmed to approximately 12-18 top names, according to tournament president Larry Thiel.  Actors Morgan Freeman and Don Cheadle have been confirmed to be playing in the Pro-Am, with the remainder of the celebrities to be announced.  

According the Clinton Foundation VP of Marketing Valerie Alexander, its is still unknown if President Clinton himself will play in the tournament.  He will be in the area for a health care conference the week before the tournament.

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