Construction of the first Olympic golf course in 112 years is complete, designer Gil Hanse said on Golf Channel’s “Morning Drive” on Monday.
“Thankfully, it’s finished,” Hanse said of the Rio de Janeiro layout. “Construction is done.”
Hanse said the last tees were sprigged in the first week of December, and “we’re now in full grow-in mode,” regarding grass. The driving range is the only area that still needs to be grassed.
The course for the first Olympic golf tournaments since 1904 has seen delays, pushing back a planned Olympic test event tournament from one year before the Games to late 2015 or early 2016.
“By all accounts, it’s going well,” Hanse said. “The project’s had, obviously, a lot of setbacks here and there along the way, so we can’t expect it’s going to be completely smooth going forward. We’re all enthused. The design is intact. They didn’t ask us to make any changes, so we’re proud of what’s being built.”
Legal issues threatened the course construction, but a judge ordered in November that work could continue.
“Those are all behind us,” Hanse said. “It’s full-steam ahead.”