OPEN organisers have confirmed Donald Trump can forget about hosting their event at Turnberry, after he was stripped of the right to stage next year’s USPGA Championship.
USPGA bosses announced the Trump Bedminster course in New Jersey had been axed as the 2022 tournament venue after the President was accused of inciting a mob to break into Capitol Hill last week.
Five people died after a pro-Trump rabble broke into the government buildings and caused mayhem in the halls of Congress.
The USPGA’s decisive action shifted the pressure onto the R&A – Turnberry has not hosted an Open since 2009, but it remains on the tournament rota.
And Trump has been pushing hard for another Open after splashing out £200million to buy the course and give it a massive makeover.
But the R&A confirmed they wanted nothing to do with the US President, issuing a statement that read: “We had no plans to stage any of our championships at Turnberry – and will not do so in the foreseeable future.
“We will not return until we are convinced that the focus will be on the championship, the players and the course itself. And we do not believe that is achievable in the current circumstances.”
That is a damning indictment of Trump and his methods. He has shown a tendency to ‘hijack’ big tournaments when they have been played on his courses, by insisting on being part of the prize-giving ceremonies.
That was the reason one of the four World Golf Championship events, the Cadillac Championship, was shifted from Trump’s Doral course in Florida to Mexico four years ago.
A plan to stage the 2015 Grand Slam of Golf – featuring the four Major championship winners – at another Trump venue in Los Angeles was also scrapped, in response to anti-Mexican comments by the President.
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News of the snub from the USPGA organisers – the PGA of America, came in a Tweet from the Association’s own president, Jim Richerson.
He announced: “The PGA of America Board of Directors has voted to exercise the right to terminate the agreement to play the 2022 PGA Championship at Trump Bedminster.
His remarks were echoed by Seth Waugh, the PGA of America’s chief executive officer.
He said: “We find ourselves in a political situation not of our making. Our feeling was given the tragic events of Wednesday that we could no longer hold it at Bedminster.
“The damage could have been irreparable. The only real course of action was to leave.”
But a statement released by the Trump organisation insisted they would not take that decision lying down.
The statement said: “We have had a beautiful partnership with the PGA of America and are incredibly disappointed with their decision
“This is a breach of a binding contract and they have no right to terminate the agreement. As an organization we have invested many, many millions of dollars in the 2022 PGA Championship at Trump National Golf Club, Bedminster.”
The 2022 USPGA is now likely to move to the Liberty National Golf Club, about forty miles from Bedminster, although Southern Hills Country Club in Tulsa is another possible venue.
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