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Presidents Cup Headed to San Francisco in 2009

PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- The Presidents Cup appears headed to Harding Park in 2009, the first of what likely will be several marquee events held at the municipal course in San Francisco during a 10-year span, a PGA TOUR official said Saturday.
The Presidents Cup has been played at Robert Trent Jones Golf Club in northern Virginia every time it has been held in the United States since 1994. The tour has been interested in the West Coast, and Harding Park was the logical choice because of a deal to stage five tournaments there over 15 years.
The TOUR official spoke on condition of anonymity because the contract has not been signed. The official said it might not be completed for at least a month because of the various levels of San Francisco government.
The development first was reported by the San Francisco Chronicle, which cited sources as saying the original deal was being amended to bring a FedExCup 'playoff event' and two Champions Tour events to Harding Park.
The newspaper said the BMW Championship, formerly the Western Open, would come to Harding Park in 2013 or 2014. It is the third of four 'playoff' events in the FedExCup and features a 70-man field, which is about the most players a small piece of property like Harding Park could handle.
Under the original contract between the city and the TOUR, Harding Park was to host either a World Golf Championship or the TOUR Championship five times in 15 years, which would help pay for the $23 million in renovations to the course along Lake Merced.
It started with the American Express Championship in 2005, and Harding Park received universal praise after Tiger Woods defeated John Daly in a playoff. But the TOUR now has a long-term deal to stage the TOUR Championship at East Lake in Atlanta, and the WGC events are locked into courses in Tucson, Ariz.; Miami; and Akron, Ohio.
The Western Open has been played in the Chicago Open area since 1962, but it is rotating under new title sponsorship and a new spot on the schedule as part of the FedExCup playoffs. It is scheduled to be played at Cog Hill in Chicago, Bellerive in St. Louis, Mo., and Crooked Stick in Indianapolis over the next six years.
The tournament, one of the oldest on the PGA TOUR schedule, has a history of moving around the country. The Western Open was played twice in California, the last time in 1956 at Presidio Country Club in San Francisco.
The Chronicle reported that Harding Park also will get the Schwab Cup -- the season-ending tournament on the Champions Tour -- in 2010 and 2011. The fifth event would be either a Presidents Cup or the CA Championship between 2015 and 2019. The CA Championship is a WGC event now played at Doral.
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