Being staged for the third consecutive year in Ballarat from 18-21 October, the National Futures Championship holds the title as the richest PGA Trainee event in the world, bringing the most talented Trainees from around the globe and across Australia to pursue the title of Australian Trainee Champion.
Firm favourite for the tournament is current Rich River and Southern Trainee Champion Brody Martin from Marangaroo Golf Club in Western Australia.
Martin currently leads the Trainee scoring average heading into the National Futures Championship and has consistently demonstrated his ability to hold form under the pressure of a major four round tournament.
But Martin will have some strong competition for the title with New South Welshman Robbie Hogan and Victorian Adam Burdett both in impressive form.
Hogan has won both the NSW/ACT and QLD/NT Trainee Championship titles over the last four months.
Likewise Burdett claimed a convincing victory at the recent WA Trainee Championship, finishing four shots clear of Martin. Burdett is currently ranked second in the Trainee scoring averages.
Once again the tournament welcomes international competitors from Great Britain & Ireland, New Zealand and South Africa, with the winner from each country's Trainee Championship invited to the event creating a virtual World Trainee Championship.
Making the trip in 2016 are South African Thinus Rosslea, Great Britain and Ireland's Mathew Webb and New Zealanders John Bae and Ben Guilford.
This is Guilford's second trip to Ballarat after he was forced to withdraw from the National Futures Championship following the second round last year due to injury.
After a nail bitting finish last year, which saw the title narrowly stay on Australian soil, following two victories from overseas Trainees in the past six years, it would not be a surprise to again see an international push for victory in 2016.
As one of only two Australian golf championships, alongside the PGA Professionals Championship, where males and females compete side by side for both prize money and a national championship title the event provides a unique prospect.
Third year New South Wales Trainee Carly Beck comes in to the tournament as the highest ranked female competitor. Beck has demonstrated consistency in her playing across the three years of the program and has always featured strongly on the scoring averages against her male peers during this time.
Not only will the winner of the National Futures Championship walk away with first place prize money of almost $10,000, they will also secure an entry into the 2017 Australian PGA Championship, with the chance to compete alongside some of the best ISPS HANDA PGA Tour of Australasia and European Tour players.
The tournament week tees off on Monday 17th October with a sponsors and presenters pro-am. The first round of the National Futures Championship will then commence on Tuesday 18th October with the Trainees once again welcomed by the Ballarat region and community.
Headlines at a glance
Eynesbury raises the bar
Leading Professionals from all over Australia will be on show at Eynesbury Golf Course in February for the 2017 Eynesbury Masters presented by Genesis...
Second win for Woodhead
Stephen Woodhead claimed his second win on the E-Z-GO PGA Legends Tour this year at the Club Car Gold Coast Senior Open after the Jandowae Legends Pro...
NZ PGA Championship to move to Palmerston North
The Manawatu Golf Club will host the 2017 Lawnmaster Horizon Golf NZPGA Championship, to be played from March 2nd – 5th 2017 at its Hokowhitu course i...