Moving For The Gallery

The Arizona Daily Star has all sorts of interesting information regarding the WGC Match Play's move to Tucson.

Charles Durrenberger writes:

The competition for the foreseeable future will be staged at The Gallery's South Course, where expansive fairways will be shaved down to 25 yards wide, providing ample spectator avenues.

"Fans will not be walking through the desert, except between holes, and we will have wide expanses for that," said Gallery head golf professional Paul Nolen. "The Tour has not requested us to do anything special to the golf course."

No, just cut the fairway widths in half. They don't matter anyway! Shoot, take 'em to 15 yards so the fans can be part of the action...sell hard hats, have paramedics on hand. I still say the 18-34 year olds will love it.

That is primarily due to a temporary situation. Ground is to be broken in August on the Nicklaus course.

The Gallery Golf Club's 36-hole layout is at 14000 N. Dove Mountain Blvd., two miles north of Tangerine Road, roughly 23 miles northwest of Tucson's city center and at the base of the Tortolita Mountains.

Parking is planned at lots near Tangerine Road and Dove Mountain Boulevard, with shuttle service to the course. Intense traffic is anticipated.

Hey, they should see Sunset Boulevard on when school lets out on Valentine's Day. Bet it doesn't take 2 hours to go 3 miles!

And thanks to reader John for this Greg Hanson column:

The Gallery is expected to pay something in the $500,000 to $750,000 range to play host to the Match Play Championships. The typical PGA Tour host fee is 37 percent of the purse (or about $3 million in this case). How's that for a discount? When the Match Play purse rises to $8 million next year, the Tour and Accenture will pay almost all of it. 

Giving back is the heart of the PGA Tour!

The attendant exposure should launch the Gallery into the stratosphere of elite-level golf facilities.

Yes, it did so much for La Costa. The Tour couldn't get out of town fast enough.

The Conquistadores will be given the entire ticket inventory. They will distribute all tickets and keep all the profit for their charities, the First Tee program and their foundation. More important, they will be able to retain their identity with pro golf. 

They no longer will operate the tournament, but their charitable profits are expected to increase. Crazy. 

Hey, they deserve it.

The Dove Mountain development, part of Tucsonan Dave Mehl's tony 6,200-acre property, will become Southern Arizona's Scottsdale, a community that will next include a Jack Nicklaus-designed course scheduled to play host to the Match Play event beginning in 2009. 

They'll need at least 10 more Nicklaus courses to catch up with Scottsdale. And preferably all of them at one development.

"We expect to break ground perhaps in August," said Mehl, who has twice met with Nicklaus at the Gallery in recent months. 

What is with the Tour and the love affair with unfinished Nicklaus courses?

Accenture, which posted a 2005 net profit of $15.5 billion and has more than 125,000 employees worldwide, uses the WGC event as a corporate celebration.

Yep, at $15.5 billion in profit, an $8 million purse is no big deal.