Buick May Sponsor Hartford Event

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CROMWELL, Conn. (AP) -- The Greater Hartford Open is close to signing a major sponsor, Tournament Director Dan Baker said Wednesday.
 
But Baker would not confirm a report in The Hartford Courant that Buick is the corporation ready to do a deal.
 
The Courant, citing sources it did not identify, said Wednesday that the automaker is widely expected to become a major backer of the golf tournament, which lost its title sponsor when Canon pulled out last year.
 
Buick already is the biggest corporate sponsor on the PGA Tour. Canon had been title sponsor of the Hartford event for 18 years.
 
A source close to the negotiations told the newspaper agreement was near but might not be ready by the time the tournament begins Thursday.
 
Players told the newspaper Tuesday on condition of anonymity that the automotive corporation would likely sign on as a television sponsor for three years at $2.5 million annually. That would leave GHO officials to put together a bridge plan estimated at $3 million to cover the rest of the tournament costs.
 
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