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Former President Trump took off at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, NJ on Thursday morning for the LIV Golf pro-am event ahead of the Saudi-backed league’s third tournament of the season this weekend.
Trump took a few practice swings before being greeted with a round of applause as he teed off on the first hole of the event where he will play alongside son Eric Trump, 24-time PGA Tour winner Dustin Johnson and 2020 US Open champion Bryson DeChambeau.
Other names mentioned on official pro-am list includes Olympic gold medalist Caitlyn Jenner and Basketball Hall of Famer Charles Barkley.
DONALD TRUMP SHARES LIV GOLF WELCOME PARTY WITH GREG NORMAN, DUSTIN JOHNSON AHEAD BEDMINSTER INVITATIONAL
Trump and former first lady Melania Trump attended LIV Golf’s welcome party at Gotham Hall in Manhattan on Wednesday night, where the former president was seen talking with LIV Golf CEO Greg Norman.
Despite the tour’s ties to Saudi Arabia, Trump has hailed the new league as “one of the hottest things that’s happened in sports.”
“I think the publicity they’ve gotten, more than anything else, has been a big thing for them,” Trump said Monday during an interview with The Wall Street Journal. “I think the publicity they’ve gotten is worth billions of dollars. It’s one of the hottest things that’s happened in sports, and sports are a big part of life.”
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Earlier this month, Trump warned PGA Tour loyalists about a potential lost opportunity.
“All those golfers who remain ‘loyal’ to the highly disloyal PGA, in all its various guises, will pay a heavy price when the inevitable merger with LIV comes, and you will get nothing but a big ‘thank you’ from PGA officials who making millions of dollars a year,” Trump wrote on Truth Social.
LIV Golf offers a $25 million purse with a $4 million winning share and a $5 million prize to the winning team at each event. Players like Johnson and DeChambeau have also received lucrative signing bonuses.
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On Wednesday, LIV Golf announced its 2023 plan which includes 14 tournaments and a total purse of $405 million.
Fox News’ Joe Morgan contributed to this report.