How the Travelers Championship thrives the week after the U.S. Open

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While some PGA Tour events have struggled with dates that are a week after a major championship, the Travelers Championship has thrived in its slot the week after the U.S. Open.

Tournament organizers at TPC River Highlands in Cromwell, Connecticut, always arrange charter flights from West Coast U.S. Open sites to get players and caddies across the country quickly. That’ll be the case this year as the national championship just concluded at Torrey Pines in San Diego.

The Travers has also historically given sponsor exemptions to promising young players who turn pro.

Two years ago, Matthew Wolff, Collin Morikawa and Viktor Hovland all played at TPC River Highlands on sponsor exemptions.

Since 2007, Webb Simpson, Rickie Fowler, Ryo Ishikawa, Kyle Stanley, Morgan Hoffmann and Patrick Cantlay also received sponsor exemptions as young pros.

This year, Brooks Koepka’s brother, Chase, will be in the field thanks to a sponsor exemption. Chase was scheduled to play last year’s event, but he and Brooks both withdrew out of an abundance of caution after Brooks Koepka’s caddie, Ricky Elliott, tested positive for COVID-19. Brooks Koepka is also scheduled to play this year at TPC River Highlands.

Also receiving a sponsor exemption into this year’s Travelers Championship is John Pak, the All-American from Florida State who won the 2021 Haskins, Ben Hogan and Jack Nicklaus awards. Davis Thompson, an All-American from the University of Georgia and Oklahoma State All-American Austin Eckroat will all play on sponsor exemptions this year.

The Travelers, historically the largest sporting event in Connecticut, will be June 24-27. Dustin Johnson is the defending champion and is committed to return. Other notables who have committed include Bryson DeChambeau, Patrick Reed, Phil Mickelson and three-time Travelers champion Bubba Watson.

In March, the Travelers re-upped as title sponsor for another nine years through 2030. Since it became the title sponsor in 2007, the tournament has generated more than $20 million for nearly 800 nonprofits.