I’ve got tickets to the GHO golf tournament in Hartford this weekend (Thu-Sun). The question comes up because the tickets say they’re good for any one of the four days, which means I have to choose one.
So is there any reason why someone going only one day shuld not go on Sunday, the day the tournament is decided?
I always went to the GHO on Thursday. The players were very relaxed and would actually talk to us lowly spectators. It was also nice not to have to deal with the crowds, as BF stated.
I went to a PGA tour event on Thursday, the first day of the tournament. There were no crowds at all, and we had excellent (and close!) viewing locations at various tees and greens.
The Seniors come through Dearborn, MI every year, and I usually go. Some of the reasons I go early in the tourney have been stated above-- notably the “having fun” aspect is quite regrettable Monday morning & getting out of work on Thur/Fri.
The reason I like to go early, too, is just because I like to be outside, and what better excuse to be outside than to watch sports?
SmackFu, I have a question about your tickets, though: Usually the passes that I’ve seen at the tournaments I’ve gone to are good for all four (or three) days. The passes are just things you wear around your necks or whatever, so as long as you’re wearing it, you can attend as many days as you want. Are you sure you can’t go more than one day?
Maybe I’m mistaken, though. Usually I use press passes good for all four days, so I’m not sure how the purchased tickets work.
With the GHO, you may want to go to the first two rounds to follow Suzy Whaley on the course.
Sunday is the one day you DON’T want to go to a golf tourn.
When you are are a golf tourn, you really only see a fraction of what is happening. You can only follow one group at a time, or position yourself at one spot at a time. But great golf can be happening anywhere on the course at any time. On Sundays, you want to see the leader knock it in the drink, or hit it stiff. Or the hard charger take risks which may or may not payoff. And you never know when a chip or putt will drop shaking up the leaderboard. On TV, you have the best seat in the house.
That and the crowds.
I haven’t gone to a tourn in some years, but I generally used to go early on Sat a.m. Beat the crowds. You wouldn’t believe the difference if you get to the course around 9 a.m., as opposed to 1 p.m. And you might find that 4 or so hours of golf are all you want to watch. Traffic and parking and such generally gets tremendously more of a hassle as the day goes on.
Make sure to check the pairings and tee times the day before you go, to see when any players you want to see are teeing off. And get a map of the course from the paper or on-line, to plan your strategy. Check out where you will park, and where that will get you onto the course. IMO, a little planning ahead vastly increases the experience.
This is - IMO - an excellent golf book. I recently re-read it. It has a chapter on how to view a tournament. He recommends going Thursday through Saturday, and watching Sunday on TV.
Happy - every one of the many tourns I’ve been to sold both single day and weeklong tix.
Thanks for all the answers. I figured I’d post back to provide some closure.
I ended up going on Sunday anyways. They were definitely only one-day tickets (“any single day between Thursday and Sunday”), and parking was expensive and only one-day too. So a choice had to be made. As was suggested, the crowds were really bad near the end of the day. As each group finished, more and more people poured into the 17th and 18th holes.
The saving grace was that the TPC where the tournament was held has a lot of bowls/slopes to view from, and those hold a ton of people. Many more than the holes in the flat, which could only accommodate two or three fans deep. And actually seeing the pressure at the end and the winning moment was probably worth it, I’d have to say.
What Dinsdale said about seeing only a fraction of what’s going on is very true. Simply moving around a golf course holding a tournament is surprisingly difficult. It turns out a lot of the paths cross the fairways (at least at this course), so at times you would walk 100 yards and then have to wait for the next pairing to play through. Or you’d be on the side of the fairway, and the marshals would make everyone stop walking while someone took a shot. We found it hard to even stay ahead of the golfers sometimes, and they really don’t move very fast at all.