As announced earlier this week, this year’s PGA Championship will for the first time feature a Pick the Hole Location Challenge Hosted by Jack Nicklaus. On Thursday, the host himself spoke about the idea to let fans vote on the final-round hole location for the par-3 15th hole at Oak Hill.
“To get the fans involved, I think it was a great idea, because the response has been terrific to it,” Nicklaus said on a conference call. “People have been very involved in being interested and saying, ‘Hey, I'm going to be part of the PGA Championship,’ and I think that's what the PGA of America wants. They want to include people in the game and grow the game and make sure that people feel like they are part of what the Championship is. I think it's kind of a neat thing.”
As for the specifics of the idea, the five-time PGA Championship winner revealed that he had originally wanted to let the fans vote for all four rounds.
“I tried to get the PGA to do it all four rounds, and they said, ‘Well, maybe that was a little bit too much the first year, all four pin placements,’” he said. “Maybe too much the first year, seeing if the weather conditions and everything it was going to change.”
Though he hasn’t seen early vote totals, Nicklaus said he thinks he knows which hole location will win – but he’s not saying.
“I'm not going to divulge which one I think it will be,” he said, “but I think there was one that's a little bit more difficult than the others, and my bet is that's the one they are picking.”