Wednesday, May 16, 2012

From the desk of Golf Course Management

If you're reading this, you already know that THE PLAYERS Championship Agronomy Preparation is online: here and @tpcsawgrassagr on Twitter.  Below is a GCSAA article written about our efforts.  

Players Championship prep hits cyberspace

I've been terribly negligent in getting this post live, but wanted to take at least a second to bring your attention to the excellent work being done by the men and women preparing TPC Sawgrass for this weekend's Players Championship.

Sure, the conditions they've been delivering this week have been top notch and they've been getting plenty of kudos from competitors for their work (on his Twitter account, Stewart Cink called the greens "close to perfect.") But that strong work is extending past the golf course and into cyberspace on the agronomy team's excellent blog and Twitter account (@TPCSawgrassagr).

In what might be a first for a maintenance team preparing a course for a professional event, Sawgrass superintendent Tom Vlach, CGCS, has made the coordination of blogging and Tweeting about the behind-the-scenes work of the agronomy team the job duty of one of his assistants, Sam Bauer (with the help of Bruce Williams). You've probably seen similar reports that the GCM staff has done in the past from major golf events like the U.S. Open and PGA Championship — and we'll do the same again this year from The Olympic Club, Kiawah Island and even Medinah for the Ryder Cup — but we don't ever recall this level of coverage from the maintenance staff itself before (feel free to correct me if I'm wrong).

So far, there have been tons of video coverage, reports on the color of Sawgrass greens, which has apparently caused quite a stir among TV viewers, and plenty of reports from the early-morning and late-afternoon maintenance work on the course. If you'll be following the tournament this weekend, I can't recommend checking out these resources highly enough as a way to supplement what you're seeing on TV from Johnny Miller and the folks at NBC Sports and The Golf Channel.