Simpson: Sawgrass playing firm, fast


PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. – Despite nearly 10 inches of rain over the last seven days, the bulk of which (about 7 inches) fell last weekend, the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass was surprisingly dry as players began arriving on Monday for this week’s Players Championship.

“It’s really firm and fast out there,” said Webb Simpson, who played the front nine Monday. “The fairways are even running out. It’s like it never rained.”

Even the famed 17th hole was dry Monday thanks to a cloudless sky, breezes that gusted to 20 mph and a state-of-the-art Precision Air system that has been working overtime. Just days earlier the walkway to the island green was under water.

Officials closed the course to the public Monday to give maintenance crews extra time to deal with last week’s deluge.