The Ocean Course received more than a foot of rain. Photo: LPGA.COM
The six Australians in the Bahamas this week will need to wait until Friday to tee off after Mother Nature became the story at the Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic on Tuesday afternoon as nearly a foot of rain fell on the Ocean Club Golf Course at Atlantis, Paradise Island between 3 p.m. and 11 p.m. on Tuesday.
In the wake of violent storms, significant amounts of standing water remain on at least seven holes with the ninth and 18th fairways completely flooded.
Crews began work overnight to remove the water and the efforts to clear debris and make the golf course playable are on-going.
As a result of the last 24 hours, the inaugural Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic has been shortened to a 54-hole event beginning on Friday.
First and second-round pairings will remain the same with a 36-hole cut made on Saturday night.
The Australians in the field are Katherine Hull-Kirk, Lindsey Wright, Sarah-Jane Smith, Julia Boland, Frances Bondad and Sarah Kemp.
“Mentally, you’re still in it although physically you can’t do anything today at the course,” said Suzann Pettersen. “I’m happy I got 18 holes of practice in yesterday. We will play whenever we can.”
Many homes, cars and roadways in Nassau were flooded on Tuesday in what locals are calling the worst storm in the last 20 years.
“You can’t feel guilty about not practicing or playing today because no one is allowed out there,” said Stacy Lewis.
“I certainly wish for the tournament’s sake that we could have played the pro-am. First-year events have some bumps and we always get through them. This is no different.”
There is a 60 percent chance for more rain showers on Wednesday afternoon and into Thursday. Tournament officials continue to monitor the weather and course conditions with safety for golfers and spectators as the first priority.
Pure Silk-Bahamas LPGA Classic Tournament Director Matt Truax said “The damage to the golf course and structures caused by Tuesday’s heavy rain and winds was extensive and we are working around the clock to repair damages and drain the golf course so that we can present a first-class event for the LPGA, Pure Silk and the people of the Bahamas. We thank everyone for their understanding and patience while we do everything possible to return Ocean Club Golf Course to championship condition.”
The last LPGA Tour event to be shortened to 54 holes due to rain was in 2010.