PGA Tour 3M Open Hopes To Build Solid Base After Successful First Year
3M Open Exec Dir Hollis Cavner said the inaugural PGA Tour event at TPC Twin Cities this past weekend was "more than I could have hoped for," according to Jerry Zgoda of the Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE. Cavner "declined to reveal attendance numbers" for the event, which was won by Matthew Wolff in just his third PGA Tour start. However, there were "large galleries ... particularly on the weekend." Hollis had said that general-admission tickets would be "sold without limit until parking lots daily reached a 45,000-fan capacity, which they didn’t." Golfer Jason Day said, "It was great playing here. Fans are phenomenal." Cavner said the tournament wants to "go bigger and do more" in the future. He and his Pro Links Sports staff have plenty of "new fan-centric ideas for next year, which include a hilltop fan zone that overlooks four front-nine holes, more concession stands and canopied grandstands that shade the sun." The 3M Open "changes dates next year, moving from July 4th week to a permanent one July 23-26," the week after the Open Championship. The Tokyo Games "start that same week" next summer (Minneapolis STAR TRIBUNE, 7/9). In St. Paul, Charley Walters wrote the inaugural 3M Open treated its participating golfers "well, and that treatment should produce even better fields in future years" (ST. PAUL PIONEER PRESS, 7/7).
RICKIE DON'T LOSE THAT NUMBER: In Detroit, Tony Paul notes PGA Tour and Rocket Mortgage Classic tournament officials "long considered" Rickie Fowler their "secret weapon before they brought the first PGA Tour tournament to Detroit, and his performance was considered nothing shy of an ace." Fowler in '15 signed a "lucrative deal to be a pitchman for Rocket Mortgage." From the "moment the PGA Tour announced it was coming to Detroit, Fowler jumped on board." Fowler's work week "began in earnest" the Monday of tournament week, and "included more obligations, media and corporate, than most pros have to deal with." Tournament Exec Dir Jason Langwell said, "Rickie was ever-present around the golf course and the city." Fowler tied for 46th, but it "hardly mattered to the fans, who followed him in droves and made for a successful week, attendance wise" (DETROIT NEWS, 7/9).