Harbour Town Golf Links in great condition only 6 months after M - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Harbour Town Golf Links in great condition only 6 months after Matthew

(Source: WTOC) (Source: WTOC)

The 49th RBC Heritage is underway with practice rounds and a nice-sized crowd Tuesday. 

PGA Tour pros and fans are not noticing anything different at Harbour Town, but that could have been a different story when Hurricane Matthew hit. 

This week is a celebration of golf as the world's best players are back on Hilton Head Island, but this year, the RBC Heritage is also a celebration of community pride after all the effort and resilience leading up to it. The talk so far has been that you would hardly know a major hurricane blew through the course just six months ago. 

Matthew hit Harbour Town hard, taking out about 260 trees and requiring a site visit from the PGA Tour the week after the storm to ensure the course could be ready for the Heritage. Lots of work by lots of people got it done, and two locals, one in the Heritage field and one who runs the golf course, expect the pride in that work to be evident this week. 

"The town of Hilton Head and Sea Pines should be very proud, and they're going to be able to showcase that this week. There should be some great crowds out here, and they'll be able to see what was done in five or six months to get everything back to ordinary. You wouldn't know anything happened," said Beaufort resident, Mark Anderson, who is playing in the Heritage. 

"Everybody's coming out for themselves and seeing we're back and we're better, and we're strong, and it's not just the Harbour Town Golf Links; it's Sea Pines Resort, it's the town of Hilton Head, it's Beaufort County. It did take everybody's enthusiastic support of a common cause and we came together and look what we've got. It's a great celebration that we've overcome," said John Farrell, Head Professional, Harbour Town Golf Links. 

Of the 260 trees that were lost, only about five would have come into play during the Heritage, so the shot values on the course are intact. Because the tree canopy has been thinned out slightly, there has been better airflow, better growth, and as a result, players are actually saying they have never seen Harbour Town in better condition than it is now. 

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