KAPALUA, Hawaii —
Hyundai’s three-year deal as the title sponsor of the Tournament of Champions expires this year, even though corporate officials sounded optimistic about renewing and there are strong signs it will happen.
It doesn’t help that Mother Nature was in a bad mood this week. Few things in golf cause a knee-jerk reaction like bad weather.
There were suggestions to move the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am to the end of the West Coast Swing after the tournament was canceled by rain in 1996, completed nearly seven months after it started in 1998 because of rain, and shortened to 54 holes a year later because of — you guessed it — rain.
Since then, Pebble has had more than its share of glorious weather.
The rain was so bad in California in 2005 that the Nissan Open at Riviera went five days to get in 36 holes. The next week, the Match Play Championship at La Costa was postponed one day because the entire course looked like a water hazard. Woods wondered if it might not be better for the PGA Tour to spend February in Florida and March in California. It sounded like a reasonable idea until a Champions Tour in Florida was shortened to 36 holes because of rain.