Construction of the Olympic golf course in Rio de Janeiro has yet to start because of a legal dispute over the ownership of the land on the proposed site.
The company disputing the ownership has won a legal battle and again asked a judge to block construction on the area. But local Olympic organizers and city officials say the dispute is not affecting the project and that they remain confident work will soon begin.
The International Golf Federation expects construction to start soon, but now says a possible delay wouldn’t significantly disrupt preparations for test events planned for 2015.
“Construction hasn’t started but that is not to say that work hasn’t been done,” IGF vice president Ty Votaw said. “Work has begun on a number of fronts, including the course design and the clubhouse project. A number of things have already been done behind the scenes.”
Rio will host the first Olympic golf tournament in more than 110 years.
Brazil’s Higher Court of Justice ruled last week that a Rio court was wrong in denying an appeal by the company disputing the ownership, meaning the case will likely drag on for several more months. The lower court will basically have to accept the company’s request to send the case to a higher court, which will analyze the case from the beginning.
Local organizers downplayed the legal setback.
“Rio 2016 is confident that all deadlines for the golf course construction will be met,” the local organizing committee said in a statement Thursday.
ROSE BEATS TIGER
Justin Rose beat Tiger Woods by a stroke in Belek, Turkey, to set up a title match against Lee Westwood in the World Golf Final.
The two Englishmen will meet Saturday, with the winner getting $1.5 million and the runner-up $1 million in the eight-player exhibition.
Rose holed a sand wedge shot for an eagle at the 14th and finished at 2-under 69.
Westwood shot a course-record 61 to beat 2011 Masters champion Charl Schwartzel of South Africa by six shots. Westwood had two eagles and eight birdies, including a 50-footer at the last on the Sultan Course at Antalya Club.
Australia’s Nick O’Hern shot a 9-under 62 to take a three-stroke lead over Nicolas Colsaerts, Jhonattan Vegas and Derek Ernst in the Frys.com Open in San Martin, Calif. … Na Yeon Choi shot a 6-under 65 in the LPGA Malaysia for a share of the lead with Karrie Webb. …Meghan Stasi won her fourth U.S. Women’s Mid-Amateur title, routing Liz Waynick, 6 and 5, on Briggs Ranch in San Antonio. … England’s Ross Fisher and Scotland’s Stephen Gallacher shot 6-under 65s to share the first-round lead in the European Tour’s Portugal Masters. … Bob Gaus and Bruce Nakamura each shot 3-under 69 at River Creek Club in Leesburg, Va., to share the lead in the Senior PGA Professional National Championship. … Jared Allen shot a 7-under 64 at the Web.com Tour’s Miccosukee Championship in Miami for a one-shot lead. Tacoma’s Michael Putnam shot a 68 and Olympia’s Andres Gonzales opened with a 75.