Trump National Running Horse Closer To Reality; PGA Tour Execs Huddle For New Excuses To Avoid Fresno

Golfweek's Scott Hamilton reports that The Donald signed a letter of intent to acquire bankrupt Running Horse, confirming that he is willing to buy into even the most desolate markets just to be tied to a possible PGA Tour event.

Al Berryman, an attorney for the Fresno-based law firm of Baker, Manock and Jensen that represents Trump, said June 27 the terms of the deal are for Trump to pay $25 million in advance, plus an additional $15 million from future profits. Berryman said a purchase and sale agreement is being drawn up, with a July 2 completion deadline. After a final agreement is reached, Running Horse’s attorneys will schedule a hearing in front of a federal bankruptcy judge to have it approved.

Trump told Golfweek June 14 that he had increased his initial offer to purchase the troubled golf and residential development through U.S. bankruptcy court from $10 million to $25 million, with his primary goal being a PGA Tour stop as soon as 2008. But Mick Evans, who purchased the 420-acre property earlier this year from original developer Tom O’Meara, turned down Trump’s offer late last week. Negotiations resumed, however, resulting in Wednesday’s accord.


The property was to be the site of a PGA Tour event this October. But those plans faltered when work on Running Horse was halted last year because of financial problems, as well as the inability to land a title sponsor for the event. Evans filed bankruptcy in April, with the project’s debt totaling an estimated $65 million. To compound matters, it was revealed last month that the club didn’t even own enough land to finish the Jack Nicklaus-designed course, of which only two holes and the driving range have been completed.

Does this mean The Donald will get to work with Jack Gary Jackie Steve the son-in-law?

Cohen indicated Wednesday that Trump wanted to make it difficult for the Tour to say no to his hosting an event.

“Mr. Trump’s goal is to move this project as quickly as possible so as not to interfere with the Tour’s plan,” Cohen said.

“He’s a man with a vision right now. He’s already in his mind mapped the course for PGA Tour standards. He’s calculated property locations, the clubhouse, the cart paths, you name it. He’s already calculated what he anticipates the final project to look like, and what he’s doing now is executing on it.”

How can you argue with that kind of vision? A man calculating cart path locations. Such vision.