R&A Introduces the Mark H. McCormack Medal

The R&A has announced that the new Mark H McCormack Medal will be presented annually to the leading player in the World Amateur Golf Ranking. The ranking is a weekly performance table of the world's top 1,200 players in men's amateur golf, and reflects player performance over the previous 52 weeks.

The inaugural medal winner will be the player who leads the World Amateur Golf Ranking on September 23rd. This date allows ranking points in the U.S. Amateur and the European Amateur to be tabulated, with the medal presentation serving as a new closing highlight to the world amateur season.

The medal commemorates the contribution to golf by McCormack, the late founder of IMG who was elected a member of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews in 1981. R&A Chief Executive Peter Dawson said of the award: "This is a fitting way to pay tribute to the legacy of a man who contributed so much to the game of golf around the world.

"Having been an able and enthusiastic player of the game at amateur level, and actively involved in the establishment of the Official World Golf Ranking for professionals, Mark would, I am sure, have shared our golf development aim in establishing the R&A World Amateur Golf Ranking. We are delighted that the leading amateur player over the season will win the award that bears his name."

McCormack was instrumental in the growth of world golf. It was while playing college golf for William and Mary in Virginia that he came up against a young Wake Forest golfer named Arnold Palmer. This meeting led to a handshake agreement between the two that provided the foundation for IMG's birth. Within 18 months, IMG also added Gary Player and Jack Nicklaus to their list of clients. Golf's "Big Three" went on to win eight Open Championships and many other major title.

McCormack also devised and created the Official World Golf Ranking, which the R&A sanctioned in 1986. Todd McCormack, Mark's son, said: "Given IMG's prevalence in the world of professional golf, people know little about my father's devotion to the amateur game. His early trips to Britain to play in the Amateur Championship began so many treasured life long friendships. Knowing the R&A developed a ranking for the amateur game and an award that honors his life in this fashion would have meant so much to him."

The Mark H. McCormack Medal measures 1.5 inches in diameter and is made of sterling silver. It features the crest of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews and the text: "THE MARK H. McCORMACK MEDAL WORLD AMATEUR GOLF RANKING."