The logo for the 2016 World Amateur Team Championships features a powerful creature that appears to be wrapping itself around a golf ball.
“Mexico is very proud of its Mayan culture, so we tried to fuse a classic golf symbol, the golf ball with one of the most important symbols of Mayan culture, the god Kukulkan, who is a feathered serpent,” said Federico Valdez Adame, executive director of the Mexican Golf Federation. “The idea was to provide the 2016 WATC with both a Mexican and a Mayan identity. We really hope everyone likes the logo.”
The Women’s World Amateur Team Championship will be played from Sept. 14-17 at El Camaleón Golf Club at the Fairmont Mayakoba and Playa Paraíso Golf Club at the Iberostar Resort, both in Cancun, with the World Amateur Team Championship being contested over the same courses on Sept. 21-24. It will be the 27th time that the women will compete for the Espirito Santo Trophy and the 30th men’s competition for the Eisenhower Trophy.
The 2012 World Amateur Team Championships in Turkey provided the Mexican Golf Federation with two of its most treasured moments: the nation’s first medal in WATC competition, as well as the announcement of its successful bid to host these 2016 championships. Led by Sebastian Vazquez’s individual low score of 15-under-par 199, the Mexican men earned the silver medal at Antalya Golf Club.
“We had good expectations, but this is a dream come true,” said Mexican captain Jorge Coghlan at the time. “I played in this a long time ago  and being captain is very satisfying. This is Sebastian’s last amateur tournament and there is no better way to go out than winning the World Amateur.”
Looking back on that week brings a glow of satisfaction to those who are hosting the 2016 championships, particularly since they coincide with the 50th anniversary of the country’s first WATC, in 1966 at Club de Golf Mexico in Mexico City for the men’s competition and at Mexico City Country Club for the women’s competition.
“Both are very much in the top of our golf history, but the medal should be the ‘numero uno’ since we already hosted the 1966 WATC,” said Valdez Adame of the events of 2012.
Earlier that week, the International Golf Federation had voted to bring the 2016 championships to El Camaleón and Playa Paraíso. El Camaleón is also the host course for the PGA Tour’s OHL Classic at Mayakoba.
“We cannot tell you how touched and emotional we are,” said past Mexican Golf Federation president Fernando Ysita, who was part of the bid presentation. “It’s a great opportunity to show the world and the golfers what kind of courses we have, what kind of people we are and what kind of organization we can hopefully provide. It is really important to Mexico and Mexican golf that we have been allowed to receive these championships back.”
Since winning the bid in 2012, the Mexican Golf Federation has been focused on securing the necessary funding and building relationships with appropriate strategic partners to assure the best experience for all.
One of the highlights of the World Amateur Team Championships is the Gala Dinner. During this much anticipated event, which is held between the two competitions and is a favorite of players, captains, delegates and visitors. The Espirito Santo Trophy medals are awarded to the women, the competitors for the Eisenhower Trophy are welcomed and the host country gives everyone a glimpse into what makes their home special.
“Mexico has great cultural offerings and Cancun/Riviera Maya is a region that is particularly rich in culture and traditions,” Valdez Adame said. “The Gala Dinner will most likely be the best moment for this, not only through the show, but also the setting where we intend to offer it. Our guests will also have the opportunity to visit ancient Mayan ruins and experience a huge offering of activities very close to their hotels.”
Surely, Kukulkan would approve.