Heavy rain is predicted for Friday , and the News asked PGA officials at the Media Center on Tuesday at the Riviera if the Genesis Open would still be played.
The answer is probably. Unless the greens or course is underwater or the rain is coming down so hard the players cannot see the ball, play will go on. If need be, this tournament could be concluded on Monday.
A Daily News story on Feb. 13 explained how this course, designed by George Thomas moves water away from the course.
Matt Morton, the Riviera course superintendent since 2003, said “It’s a fascinating natural surface drainage. The fairways, the tees, the high landing areas were all designed to be high and dry, so the water moves around it and down in the barranca and out of play. And since we’re in an old riverbed, there is enough sand and gravel beneath to allow it all to drain.”
The 90-year old course had its most destructive rain in 1938, when a six-foot wall of water damaged the seventh and 13th holes as well as washing out the alternative fairway on the eighth hole.
In 2005, the non-stop rain and lightning shortened the Nissan Open to two rounds. Close to seven inches of rain fell in three days, flooding bunkers. Adam Scott won, but was not credited with a Tour win because of the shortened length. That was the only time in Riviera history, when a four-round tournament was not played.
Right now, weather forecasters are predicting heavy rain on Friday, with two to four inches of rain possible. Scattered showers are predicted on Saturday.