Local Knowledge: 2010 Frys.com Open
Series: Local Knowledge
Michael Marion, PGA Director of Golf at CordeValle Golf Club in San Martin, Calif. - site of this week's Frys.com Open on the PGA Tour - took a few minutes out of his busy schedule to talk to PGA.com about the tournament. After extensive preparations, Marion is looking forward to enjoying a great event with a stellar field. PGA.com: Thanks for joining us, Michael. Can you tell us a little about the excitement of hosting a PGA Tour event? Marion: The excitement builds as the year goes on, especially as you get into two weeks out and one week out with the grandstands and the signage going up everywhere and the facility is transformed into a major venue site. Along the way you've had meetings weekly with all your staff, motivating them and pumping them up covering all the bases. You're planning, planning, planning and then it's here. PGA.com: CordeValle is a new venue for the Fry's.com Open. What, if anything, has surprised you about the planning of a PGA Tour event? Marion: Not much, really. I was fortunate to come from Medinah, where we had hosted major championships like the 2006 PGA Championship, so I had an idea of what to expect. For the staff, just the preparation, the detail work that goes into every aspect of the event. There's not a stone left unturned from the range, locker room, walk ways, every element is considered. PGA.com: For an end of the season event, you have a pretty darn good field, headlined by Rickie Fowler, who's coming off an amazing singles performance at the Ryder Cup. Tell us about the field. Marion: We are really excited. They've done a great job with the field. They worked to get players in. We have Tim Clark and Henrik Stenson, the last two Players champions, and a past Masters winner in Trevor Immelman. We have 51 winners of a tournament in the last two years. We've got some special exemptions including John Daly. And of course on the top 125 from last year we have another 50 players. It's a strong field and people will recognize the names. Rory Sabbatini, Pat Perez, J.B. Holmes, Cameron Beckman, Stuart Appleby, Paul Goydos, Charles Howell, and the list goes on. Six 59s have been shot on the Tour over time and four of those players are here. It should be some really exciting golf. We also have two fan favorites in Brad Faxon and Tom Lehman. PGA.com: What aspect of the game will players need to excel in most in order to play well at CordeValle? Marion: Our course is a wonderful course because it rewards good shots. There's not a lot of mounding that dictates where you need to hit it. You can really fire at the pins. But it's essential to be in the fairway. The rough is up, so they'll need to be in the short grass. Being in Northern California this time of year, the weather is perfect. No wind to speak of. The course is in immaculate condition so I expect the scoring will be very good. PGA.com: Final question, Michael. Now that tournament week has arrived, what is it that you're most looking forward to? Marion: The big thing is you're watching all your work unfold. If you've done it correctly, the once tournament week rolls around you can enjoy the event. It's exciting to have the members and the community here and helping them have a good time and enjoy a classy event. The smile on their faces combines a social aspect with good competitive golf. And, obviously, it's always great to watch the best in the world on your home course.