Puerto Rico Tourism steps up to back Tour stop

A hole flag flies over the ninth green during the first round of the Puerto Rico Open.

The PGA Tour’s stop in Puerto Rico secured a replacement sponsor, extending its stay on the schedule through 2012, officials announced Monday.

The Puerto Rico Tourism Co. takes over for Banco Popular, which backed the tournament for its first three years. The opposite-field event, which will be staged concurrently in March with the WGC tournament at Doral Golf Resort & Spa, also gains a new name: Puerto Rico Open presented by seepuertorico.com.

According to the Tour, Banco Popular will continue to support the event as a significant partner.

“On one hand, this tournament gives Puerto Rico great media exposure in outlets all around the world,” said Mario González Lafuente, executive director of the Puerto Rico Tourism Co. “On the other, it generates revenue of 6,000 room nights, which strengthens our hospitality industry and our island’s economy.”

Added Sidney Wolf, president of the Puerto Rico Golf Association: “We are thrilled by the level of commitment shown by the Puerto Rico Tourism Co. to Puerto Rico’s first and only PGA Tour event. . . . This initiative allows us to continue our commitment to helping many deserving local charities in the Rio Grande area.”

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