PGA Tour leaves Doral for Mexico City
Miami-area tournament has been PGA Tour event since 1962
DORAL, Fla. – After five decades of hosting the best golfers in the world, the PGA Tour is moving out of Doral.
The tour announced Wednesday that the event at Trump National Doral will be moved to Mexico City in 2017.
Doral, nicknamed the "Blue Monster," has been a constant stop on the tour since 1962 and has more recently hosted the WGC-Cadillac Championship.
However, Cadillac's sponsorship deal ended after the 2016 tournament and no new sponsor has been named.
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem said the lack of sponsorship money is the only reason for the move.
“Once it became apparent that we would not be able to secure sponsorship at levels that would sustain the event and help it grow at Trump National Doral, we began having serious discussions with Ricardo and Benjamin Salinas, who expressed strong interest in bringing a tournament to Mexico City to benefit golf and its development throughout Mexico." said Finchem in a statement.
Upon purchasing the club in 2012, Donald Trump poured millions into a renovation that upgrading every aspect of the property.
According to GolfChannel.com, in an interview on Fox News on Tuesday, Trump made reference to the PGA Tour's decision.
"I just heard that the PGA Tour is taking their tournament out of Miami and moving it to Mexico, as an example," Trump said. "They're moving it to Mexico City which, by the way, I hope they have kidnapping insurance. But they're moving it to Mexico City."
The PGA Tour first came to Doral in 1962 for the Doral Open, hosting that tournament until 2006. The tournament then went through many different iterations before becoming a WGC stop.
The Miami Herald was the first to confirm the move.
Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez released a statement Wednesday, expressing his disappointment in the move.
"I am very disappointed to hear that the PGA Tour is leaving Miami-Dade County and the city of Doral," Gimenez said. "Our community has hosted the tournament for the last half-century. The PGA has been a great partner in Miami-Dade, making long-term pledges to the United Way and First Tee of South Florida."
"It is disappointing to learn that these charitable causes are now left without those valued contributions. What is equally disappointing is that the businesses in the city of Doral, and throughout our county, will no longer have the opportunity to take advantage of a world-class event and the economic benefits it brings. I feel strongly that Miami is the right place for the tournament. I urge the PGA to reconsider its decision and keep the tournament where it belongs, right here in Miami."
Although the PGA Tour may not visit South Florida in 2017, there is a possibility it will return in the future.
“The PGA Tour has had a wonderful history in greater Miami and at Trump National Doral and we remain interested in returning when the time is right,” said Finchem.
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