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Sizing up the PGA Championship

The First Call readers give their thoughts on the PGA Championship — the history, tradition or this year's 106th edition

Question of the week [May 13-19]: What are your thoughts on the PGA Championship — the history, tradition or this year's 106th edition at Valhalla Golf Club? 

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Valhalla is a beautiful course, but somewhat boring — a 260-yard par 3 and 200-plus yards for the remaining par 3s, typical Jack Nicklaus design and relatively flat greens. Would rather see a little more variety in lengths. I think the PGA could've done better on course selection, but still excited to watch this year's event. 

Not sure we should continue to allow some past champions into the field — John Daly, Vijay Singh, etc., who are ceremonial golfers whose games are irrelavent. Nothing against these players, I just think at some point we need more new and younger blood.

Wayne Smith
Georgetown, Texas

Certainly the PGA ranks No. 4 among the majors, but its unique connection to the game via PGA club professionals and their service to amateur golfers makes this event very special. Just ask Justin Thomas, whose father is a former club pro.

I believe the the move earlier in the year is a positive development despite losing some northern venues. The May date makes this championship much more relevant than the "last chance for glory" in August. Valhalla is an excellent tournament venue although not iconic, like Oak Hill in Rochester, New York. Kiawah Island is now probably the best future venue for the PGA Championship despite the logistical challenges of that unique oceanside property.

The strong fan and corporate support in Louisville is simply amazing and will make this year's tournament a huge financial success, which is very important given the ever-increasing purse sizes. Like it or not these championships need to generate enormous amount of revenue and Louisville certainly meets and exceeds that challenge.

I for one will very much enjoy this year's PGA and I will not fuss about how it compares to the other majors. This venue has a consistent track record of producing exciting golf. I expect more of that this year.

Reid Farrill
Toronto, Ontario

I was the first director of agronomy at the PGA Golf Club in Port St. Lucie, Florida, which was the first golf club owned and operated by the PGA of America. We had just opened the second golf course in July for play in 1996 and had received an invite to play Valhalla, along with other PGA officials some time prior to the championship. This was prior to the PGA of America purchasing Valhalla.

The course was magnificently conditioned thanks to GCSAA member and golf course superintendent Mark Wilson. It was a normal sight to see Mark and his dog riding the property to insure all playing surfaces were perfect. This was 28 years ago ... how time flies by.

Rick Wise
The Villages, Florida 

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