S.C. has a 'great chance' to host PGA again
PGA of America President Allen Wronowski poses with Rory McIlroy of Northern Ireland and the Wanamaker Trophy during the Final Round of the 94th PGA Championship at the Ocean Course on August 12, 2012 in Kiawah Island, South Carolina. (Andrew Redington/Getty Images/AFP)
Now that The Ocean Course has hosted its first major championship, the question is obvious: Will there be another?
Outgoing PGA of America president Allen Wronowski told reporters that Pete Dye's windswept creation in South Carolina's low country has "a great chance" of hosting another.
The golf course itself is a spectacular major test. It can play as long and as tough as any course on the planet and features the kind of natural beauty that makes TV executives drool. It also has the vagaries of weather that make each day a new and different competitive experience.
"Certainly things look great on TV," said Wronowski. "Everybody -- the officials, the spectators -- have had a great time and it's been a wonderful championship."
If that, indeed, is the feedback Wronowski has been getting, then he has been talking only to people who own their own helicopters. With one 25-mile, two-lane road to get on and off the island, traffic has been a colossal problem.
On tournament days, it took as long as three hours for golf galleries to negotiate what normally would be a 40-minute commute from Charleston. That's a lot to ask of paying customers.
Wronowski did say that improved traffic access will be a requirement before another major championship on The Ocean Course is considered.
"We knew going in that traffic would be a little bit of an issue," he said. "They have done a great job of minimizing it to make the best scenario possible."
Not really. When play was suspended Saturday afternoon and the big crowd all wanted to leave at once, it took as long as two hours for people to get onto shuttle buses just to get to the parking areas and then another 90-minute bumper-to-bumper ride back to civilization.
PETTERSON HANGS TOUGH
Carl Pettersson gets the purple heart for PGA Championship persistence, hanging tough through the final round when others might have lost their will.
On the first hole of the final round, Pettersson's tee shot came to rest on grass inside a hazard off the right side of the fairway, but quite playable. Pettersson asked the walking official, Brad Gregory, if he could touch the grass with his club and was informed that he could, as long as he didn't ground his club.
As he took the club back, brushing the grass, his club disturbed a dead leaf, noticeable only on replay.
A bit later, he was informed that he had incurred a two-stroke penalty for breach of rule 13-4c, for moving a loose impediment (the leaf) inside a hazard.
PGA rules chairman David Price reviewed the stroke on video and confirmed that a loose impediment was moved during Pettersson's backswing.
Pettersson was notified of the penalty as he left the fourth tee. He had made a par four on that first hole to stay within two strokes of the lead but had to add a two-stroke penalty.
"It made me more motivated," said Pettersson, who finished in a four-way tie for third at four-under.
"I got a little fired up and made some birdies in a row there. I came back. There was only one winner today, really. Rory played great. I played good enough on the front nine, though. Who knows what would have happened? But Rory played great."