The annual PGA golf tournament at Donald Trump’s Trump National Doral, the course just west of Miami, will be relocating to Mexico City, according to various reports Wednesday.
Butch Buchholz, who ran the World Golf Championships-Cadillac Championship at Trump’s course, told the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson that the PGA informed him Tuesday night that it was leaving South Florida because it was unable to find a title sponsor to replace Cadillac.
This news comes approximately six months after the PGA said it would reevaluate the future of the tournament at Doral — which has been held in Doral since 1962 — because of Trump’s controversial comments about Muslims and other non-native Americans.
Trump addressed the situation Tuesday evening on Fox News:
“I mean, I just heard that the PGA Tour is taking their tournament out of Miami and moving it to Mexico as an example. They’re taking it — it’s at Doral, it’s at — they used one of my places. They’re moving their tournament, it’s the Cadillac World Golf Championship. And Cadillac’s been a great sponsor, but they’re moving it to Mexico. They’re moving it to Mexico City which, by the way, I hope they have kidnapping insurance. But they’re moving it to Mexico City. And I’m saying, you know, what’s going on here? It is so sad when you look at what’s going on with our country.”
As ESPN points out, it is unclear what effect if any Trump’s “politically charged comments on the campaign trail had any impact on the move. In January, the PGA Tour pledged its commitment to the tournament and Miami but said it would review the future upon completion of the March event.”
According to the Golf Channel, the relocated tournament will be played in 2017 at the Club de Golf Chapultepec outside Mexico City and will be sponsored by the Grupo Salinas conglomerate.
Trump released this statement Wednesday afternoon:
“It is a sad day for Miami, the United States and the game of golf, to have the PGA Tour consider moving the World Golf Championships, which has been hosted in Miami for the last 55 years, to Mexico. No different than Nabisco, Carrier and so many other American companies, the PGA Tour has put profit ahead of thousands of American jobs, millions of dollars in revenue for local communities and charities and the enjoyment of hundreds of thousands of fans who make the tournament an annual tradition. This decision only further embodies the very reason I am running for President of the United States.”
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem is scheduled to speak during a news conference at 4:30 p.m. ET at the Memorial Tournament.
The WGC-Cadillac Championship hosts the world’s top golfers, with only 50 invited golfers allowed to participate. Adam Scott won the tournament in 2016, and past winners include Tiger Woods, Dustin Johnson, Ernie Els and Phil Mickelson.
More to come on this developing story.