Hanse balancing Olympic design with TPC Blue Monster


Gil Hanse has more on his plate than just the 2016 Olympic golf course in Rio.

Hanse has also been retained by new Doral owner Donald Trump to complete a total renovation of TPC Blue Monster. A preliminary design is on paper, with Hanse expecting to solicit feedback from the field at the WGC-Cadillac Championship. The seven-month project at Doral will begin next March.

Hanse was announced Wednesday as the winner of the Rio contract. He emerged from a group of eight finalists including Jack Nicklaus and Annika Sorenstam; Greg Norman and Lorena Ochoa; Martin Hawtree; Robert Trent Jones II; Tom Doak’s Renaissance Golf; Gary Player Design and the trio of Peter Thomson, Ross Perrett and Karrie Webb.

The Pennsylvania-based Hanse already had a contingency plan in the event he won the design contract for Rio.

“If we’re fortunate enough to win, we’ll be in Rio,” Hanse said in a telephone interview last week.

Design partner Jim Wagner will be available for both jobs which, Hanse said, are accessible with a direct flight.

“We certainly realize our full commitment to both parties,” Hanse said.

Work is expected to begin in Rio in the fall, following final tweaks to the design and the formation of a construction staff. The development will take approximately one year, followed by a year for the course to mature before it hosts a contractually-obligated test event in 2015.