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Pro Golfer Tees Up at the U.S. Open as First Competitor Sponsored by Wine Spectator

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Thomas Aiken, a European Tour pro from South Africa, makes his U.S. Open debut representing the magazine

Thomas AikenNew York, NY — Wine Spectator magazine, a publication of M. Shanken Communications, has announced it will be sponsoring professional golfer Thomas Aiken starting with this week’s U.S. Open. The sponsorship is for three years.

“It is an honor to wear the Wine Spectator logo, especially given my close friendship with Marvin Shanken, who I greatly admire for his competitive spirit in the business world,” says Aiken. “I must also admit, I love wine!”

Aiken, 31, a South African native, won the Order of Merit on South Africa’s Sunshine Tour in 2014, awarded to the player who earns the most prize money on South Africa’s professional golf tour over a minimum of nine tournaments. Aiken has also won three times on the European Tour, his most recent win coming at the 2014 Africa Open. Currently ranked 132nd in the Official World Golf Ranking, this is Aiken’s debut in the U.S. Open, one of professional golf’s four major tournaments. Aiken has also played in the Open Championship seven times, with his best result a tie for 7th in 2012; and has played in the PGA Championship twice.

Aiken has also been a mainstay at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. Played in Scotland over several course, it is the European Tour’s equivalent of the PGA’s Pebble Beach Pro-Am. For the last seven years Aiken has teamed with M. Shanken Communications chairman and Wine Spectator owner Marvin R. Shanken in the tournament.

“I have been rooting for Thomas for many years,” said Shanken. “Having him represent Wine Spectator means the brand will be exposed to an affluent and highly desirable audience worldwide.”

This year marks the 115th playing of the U.S. Open. The tournament is being held at Chambers Bay Golf Course, which runs along Washington’s Puget Sound. It is the first time the course has hosted the U.S. Open. The first round begins Thursday, June 18, at 7:00 am PDT. Aiken tees off at 2:06 p.m. PDT alongside American Daniel Summerhays and New Zealand’s Danny Lee.

About Wine Spectator
Wine Spectator is the world’s leading authority on wine. Anchored by Wine Spectator magazine, a print publication that reaches more than 3 million readers worldwide, the brand also encompasses the Web’s most comprehensive wine site (WineSpectator.com), mobile platforms, and a series of signature events. Wine Spectator examines the world of wine from the vineyard to the table, and delivers expert reviews of more than 15,000 wines each year. The magazine also runs the Wine Spectator Scholarship Foundation, which has raised more than $20 million to support wine and food education and scholarship programs over the last 30 years. Foundation beneficiaries have included the University of California, Davis, Department of Viticulture & Ecology; the Culinary Institute of America; Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration; Sonoma State University’s Wine Business Institute; and Florida International University’s Chaplin School of Hospitality & Tourism Management. Marvin R. Shanken is the founder and chairman of parent company M. Shanken Communications, Inc. whose roster also includes lifestyle publications Cigar Aficionado and Whisky Advocate, and industry journals Shanken Impact Newsletter, Market Watch, and Shanken News Daily

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