Rio organizers extend Olympic course deadline

SAO PAULO — The deadline for bids to design the golf course for the 2016 Rio Olympics has been extended because none of those submitted so far included the proper legal and financial documentation.

Organizers said Wednesday they are contacting the candidates to request new documentation that would allow them to bid for the design of the first Olympic course in more than 100 years.

The new deadline to submit documentation was not disclosed, but organizers said it is unlikely that the winner will be announced by Dec. 23 as originally planned.

The number of bidding candidates and their names are not being disclosed at this time. Some of the sport's top names previously expressed interest in the task, including Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Greg Norman, Gary Player, Robert Trent Jones Jr. and Nick Faldo.

In addition to having prior course design experience, applicants must meet several specifications in order to bid, and one of the requirements for international companies is to have an office legally established in Rio.

The Rio committee also said the course will have to leave a legacy to the city and become an important tool for youth transformation through sport, as well as be capable of hosting tests events and competitions after the games.

The course winner will be paid $300,000 for the design, but most bidders are likely to be more interested in the prestige of designing the first Olympic course since 1904.

Golf made its debut at the second modern Olympics in Paris in 1900, but was dropped after the 1904 games in St. Louis. The sport was reinstated by an International Olympic Committee vote in 2009 that also guaranteed it a place in 2020.

The Rio golf course will be built at the Barra da Tijuca neighborhood, which will hold most of the Olympic venues. The course is expected to be located about 3 miles from the athletes village.

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