Patience boosts San Francisco's golf score 

click to enlarge PGA Tour organizers want to postpone an event at Harding Park until 2016 because of scheduling conflicts. - SF EXAMINER FILE PHOTO
  • SF Examiner file photo
  • PGA Tour organizers want to postpone an event at Harding Park until 2016 because of scheduling conflicts.

A planned PGA Tour event at Harding Park is likely to happen later than originally expected, but the delay could end up bringing more professional golf to The City.

Under a contract approved in 2002, the public golf course was tentatively set to host the BMW Championship in either 2013 or 2014. However, the tour is seeking to reschedule that event due to conflicts with other host cities.

As a result, the next tour event at Harding Park will be pushed back to 2016. But to reward The City for being patient, two extra Charles Schwab Cup Championships — the final event of the Champions Tour — will be held at Harding Park. The first is slated for 2013 and the next for 2015.

In addition to hosting the PGA Tour event in 2016, The City will host another top-tier event between 2017 and 2019. There’s also a chance of hosting The Presidents Cup — staged in 2009 at Harding — in 2021.

To address the scheduling changes, the Recreation and Park Commission will have to amend its contract with the PGA Tour. As part of the amendment, the department also will renegotiate maintenance and reimbursement costs to account for cost-of-living increases. The City should receive an extra $1.6 million to $2.7 million as part of the new deal.

“By allowing the PGA some scheduling flexibility, The City gets more world-class golf tournaments and more investment in Harding Park’s maintenance,” said Phil Ginsburg, executive director of the Recreation and Park Department. “With more tournaments, the PGA and Rec and Park are able to keep our public golf course in world-class condition — a benefit for the world’s greatest golfers and the rest of us.”

The commission will vote Thursday on the contract amendment.

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Will Reisman

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