2018 JAGA


Tournament Information

Jan. 13-15, 2018

Hidden Hills Golf Club, Jacksonville, Fla.

The JAGA First Coast Amateur was launched in Jan. 2017 by the Jacksonville Area Golf Association (JAGA) to provide a competitive opportunity for elite amateur, mid-amateur, college and junior players. Scheduled over the Martin Luther King holiday weekend, the tournament serves as a particularly good time frame for college talent to compete coming out of the Christmas holidays and prior to the start of the winter/spring season. This is particularly true for players from states outside of Florida where the weather is not as conducive to golf in January.

The championship was highly successful in its first year, attracting 77 players, with 11 states, four countries and 12 colleges represented.

Brandon Mancheno of Jacksonville and now a freshman at Auburn, won the first title by three shots at Amelia National Golf & Country Club.

The 2018 First Coast Amateur will be played Jan. 13-15 (Saturday-Monday) at its new home, Hidden Hills Golf Club, located halfway between downtown Jacksonville and the Jacksonville Beaches.

Russ Libby (904-620-0910) is the owner and GM of Hidden Hills GC, with Wayne Ulmer (904-620-0910) serving as the club’s head pro. Libby is currently President of the Northern Chapter of the North Florida PGA.

Players must have a verifiable USGA handicap index of 6.0 or better.

Beginning in 2018, the World Amateur Golf Ranking will award points at the First Coast Amateur.


54 holes of stroke-play competition.

There will be a Championship competition for all contestants, plus a separate Mid-Amateur competition for eligible contestants (see next paragraph).

All competitors who are age 25 or older as of Jan. 13, 2018 will also be entered in the Mid-Amateur division and vie for a separate title.

The first times each morning will be approximately 8 a.m.

Players will be required to utilize golf carts provided by Hidden Hills. No caddies permitted.

An awards presentation will follow play in the clubhouse lunch room on Monday.

All competitors are required to check-in at the tournament Registration area in the Hidden Hills clubhouse lobby first thing upon arrival on Saturday, Jan. 13th.

$275 per player. This includes three tournament rounds of golf, three lunches, daily golf carts and range balls, gift item and prize pool.

All players shall enter via the JAGA website…www.jaxareagolf.org. Click on “First Coast Amateur” on the home page. No entry is complete until payment is received via PayPal or credit card. In the event a contestant cannot pay via PayPal or credit card, a check will be accepted. It should be mailed to: Jeff Adams / 281 Water’s Edge Drive South, Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, 32082.

Entries will close at 3 p.m. ET on Monday, January 8th.
Entries are subject to rejection at any time, including during play, by JAGA. The reason for rejection may include false statement of handicap index, improper attire and/or unbecoming conduct. Any person whose entry is accepted shall be subject to the rules and conditions of competition as set forth by JAGA (see JAGA website > “Rules of Play”).

In the event of withdrawal, an entry fee will be refunded if the Tournament Chairman is notified before the entry deadline, subject to a $25 per entry administrative fee. Withdrawals requested after the deadline will be refunded only in the event of injury or illness, at the discretion of the Tournament Chairman, and be subject to a $50 administrative fee. No refunds will be made after the competition has begun.


1st Round / Saturday, Jan. 13 8:00 a.m. start (approximate), followed by lunch
2nd Round / Sunday, Jan. 14 8:00 a.m. start (approximate), followed by lunch
3rd Round / Monday, Jan. 15 8:00 a.m. start (approximate), followed by lunch & awards

See “Practice Round” entry below for details.

Every effort will be made to complete play on the scheduled days. In the event of inclement weather, the Tournament Committee, in conjunction with the host club professional, will review its options based on the circumstances that are in effect.

The overall champion and mid-amateur champion will be presented First Coast Amateur trophies after the conclusion of play on Monday in the clubhouse lunch room. They and other competitors will receive Hidden Hills pro shop certificates, with values determined once the final field is set.

In the event of a tie for first place at the conclusion of 54 holes, a sudden-death playoff will take place, with the hole rotation determined by the Tournament Committee.


Tournament participants may play practice rounds at Hidden Hills before the event. They will be charged $29, plus tax, per round played after 1 p.m. To reserve a tee time, contact Hidden Hills (904-620-0910) and ask for the golf shop. Be sure to identify yourself as a First Coast Amateur contestant. Hitting multiple shots during practice rounds is not permitted.


All players are required to utilize golf carts provided by Hidden Hills during all rounds of the championship. Caddies are not permitted.


All contestants are expected to wear generally accepted golf attire, including golf shirts with collars and mock turtlenecks during practice and tournament rounds. No denim clothing.


Play will be governed by the Rules of Golf as approved by the U.S.G.A. and the Local Rules and Conditions of Competition for JAGA championships. Questions will be settled by the JAGA Tournament Committee, whose decision shall be final. The competition shall be deemed to have closed after all scores have been posted.


See the “Notice to Players”, which will be available at Registration and on all golf carts.


Lunch will be provided to contestants after play in the clubhouse all three days. Arrangements will be for guests of competitors to purchase lunches separately.

A beverage cart will be in operation during play all three days. Contestants and spectators may purchase items during the day at their own expense.

Spectators may walk or rent carts, if available, to follow play at Hidden Hills at the club’s prevailing rate. Carts must stay on cart paths and a minimum of 20 yards from greens and tee boxes. Adherence to club dress codes is required.

Hidden Hills Golf Club is an Arnold Palmer Signature layout that Mr. Palmer was once a co-owner of. In the early 1970s it played host to the PGA TOUR’s Greater Jacksonville Open, the forerunner to THE PLAYERS Championship. Among the TOUR winners at Hidden Hills were Gary Player, Tony Jacklin and Don January.

Hidden Hills stretches to 6,900 yards and is known for its elevation and intriguing curves, contours and rolling fairways, a setting unique in Florida. The fairways are lined by majestic pines and oaks. The owner and general manager of Hidden Hills is Russ Libby, who was recently elected President of the Northern Chapter of the North Florida PGA.


Brandon Mancheno claimed the inaugural First Coast Amateur at Amelia National Golf & Country Club in Jan. 2017. His 13-under-par 203 total was three shots better than Jayson Ledger of the University of Central Florida and Greyson Porter of Florida State. The current Auburn University freshman did not record a single bogey over the 54 holes. He did hit one tee shot out of bounds but managed to make par despite the errant shot.

Here is a link to the 2017 tournament summary of scores:


Brandon Mancheno – Inaugural First Coast Amateur Champion/2017

The First Coast Amateur is sponsored and conducted by JAGA, which promotes Jacksonville’s top-level amateur competitions every year. Established in 1954, JAGA celebrates its 64th year in 2017. It is a not-for-profit 501 (c) (4) corporation comprised of over 40-member golf clubs located in the Northeast Florida area. JAGA’s mission is to promote golf and goodwill through tournaments and related events and activities. It conducts 10 tournaments, including five championship events and five others that feature team formats. JAGA manages a scholarship program that currently provides college funding for 27 area students. Since 1974 the program has generated approximately $1.7 million in financial aid to approximately 300 students.


Joel Lamp
Co-Tournament Chairman
JAGA, Associate Director
Email: joel.lamp@gmail.com
Cell: 904-304-2067
Jeff Adams
Co-Tournament Chairman
JAGA, VP Tournaments / Director, TPC Sawgrass
Email: jeffreytadams71@gmail.com
Cell: 904-607-6142