Golf News

PGA Tour rookie arranges Air Force flyover at 2024 American Express

PGA Tour rookie arranges Air Force flyover at 2024 American Express

LA QUINTA, Calif. — The American Express will feature a military flyover Friday, courtesy of PGA Tour rookie and Air Force veteran Tom Whitney.

“We were able to squeeze it in. It’s set for Friday, right after play ends, right before the Keith Urban concert,” Whitney said. “I just wanted to do something cool for the tournament that’s been so nice to me, and also for all my fellow players, you know, coordinating this, I think you mentioned it, I’m probably the first player that’s ever coordinated a flyover for a tournament.”

Whitney, from nearby La Quinta High School and who played in The American Express in 2018 on a sponsor exemption, said getting a flyover approved is more than just picking up a phone.

“There’s an official form and request that you have to send to big Air Force,” he said. “Big Air Force then recognizes the request, and then it’s on me to coordinate with the FAA. So, I had to take that form and send it to the Riverside FAA office and get approval for them or from them. Then coordinate with the March Air Reserve Base down in Riverside, who was the unit that wanted the flyover. Yeah, so quite a good bit involved.”

Whitney said he believes the planes that will fly over the PGA West golf courses Friday will be F-16s.


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