HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (WSAV) – Tuesday marks the beginning of the rescheduled 2020 RBC Heritage.
WSAV’s Sports Team is on Hilton Head Island covering the first sporting event our area has seen in months as the practice rounds kick off.
The tournament looks a little different this year, as there will be no fans present, but the 2020 RBC Heritage may have the best field in event history. This means it’s going to be harder than ever to become a repeat champion.
Last April, 28-year-old C.T. Pan won his first PGA Tour event at Harbour Town, squeaking out a 1-shot win over Matt Kuchar and Patrick Cantley. He told reporters that he was obviously excited to come back and defend the title, but the last few months have been a rollercoaster.
“It was really sad to see because maybe the PGA Tour could cancel the first two or three, and then we will be back with the Masters and RBC,” Pan said. “That wasn’t the case, so I was sad to see that. Usually, a cancellation means I won’t be back the whole year until 2021. When they announced the new schedule, I was surprised to see RBC as the second event on schedule. My wife and I just love this place, and we love coming back here.”
Of the top 20 players in the world, 17 are on Hilton Head Island, and over 100 of the golfers have won an event on the PGA Tour.
The stacked field includes Rory McIlroy, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler, Brooks Koepka, and Jon Rahm.
While there may be plenty of big names in the field this year, number nine golfer in the world Webb Simpson said this course has a knack for evening the playing field.
“Last week you saw the guys hitting drivers on so many of the holes and hitting it over holes and bunkers. Here, you can’t do that,” Simpson said. “The fairways really do pinch in as we get closer to the greens. So, I think guys will be shocked at how tight it is. There’s out of bounds at pretty much every hole and the greens are so small.”
Savannah Christian graduate Brian Harman is quite familiar with the course. As he prepares to tee off at the Heritage, Harman reminisced on his first experiences at Harbour Town.
“I used to take days off school to watch it and it’s the first tournament I ever came to,” Harman explained. “[Golfer] Brad Faxon gave me a golf ball and I couldn’t have been more than 11 or 12-years old. It’s always had a special spot for me and I really enjoy coming back.”
News 3 will continue to bring you the latest RBC Heritage updates.