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Valspar Championship expected to return to pre-pandemic format

Also, former Innisbrook champions Adam Hadwin and Gary Woodland, along with world No. 21 Tyrrell Hatton, join the 2022 field.
Spectators cross Hole 16 during Day 3 of PGA's Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Golf Resort in Palm Harbor last May.
Spectators cross Hole 16 during Day 3 of PGA's Valspar Championship at Innisbrook Golf Resort in Palm Harbor last May. [ IVY CEBALLO | Times (2021) ]
Published Jan. 11|Updated Jan. 11

When the Valspar Championship’s week of events kicks off March 14, the tournament will start to feel like it did prior to the pandemic.

On Tuesday’s media call, tournament director Tracy West said there will be no limitations on fans allowed and no mask mandates. Last year, attendance was limited to 20-30 percent of Innisbrook’s available capacity and masks were required except while eating or drinking.

“Now we do not have to restrict our attendance,” West said. “So basically anyone who wants to purchase a ticket can do so.”

West said there also will be fewer restrictions on the tournament’s hospitality areas, allowing for more tickets to be available in those areas. Bleachers and other seating structures will be found along the course again.

Spectators cheer at Hole 18 during Day 3 action last year's Valspar Championship.
Spectators cheer at Hole 18 during Day 3 action last year's Valspar Championship. [ IVY CEBALLO | Times (2021) ]

West doesn’t foresee the mask policy changing or fans needing to disclose their vaccination status. Since the Valspar is an outdoor event, West said there is plenty of room for people to social distance.

“We are not under any mask mandate right now from the PGA Tour perspective and certainly not here in Florida,” she said.

While getting back to a more pre-COVID-19 feel, the tournament will have a full schedule with pro-ams, the Executive Women’s Day Conference, a pair of junior clinics and March 19′s concert with Chris Young and Big & Rich, which is open to any spectator who has a ticket for that day’s action.

Daily and weekly tickets are available online at valsparchampionship.com/tickets-packages/.

Valspar field grows

On Tuesday, the tournament added five names to its field a week after announcing the return of defending champion and world No. 11 Sam Burns, along with No. 3 Dustin Johnson, No. 17 Brooks Koepka and No. 22 Jason Kokrak, among others.

Here are the new commits:

No. 21 Tyrrell Hatton

Of note: Has competed at the Valspar Championship once (in 2019, cut after the first two rounds)

No. 91 Joel Dahmen

Valspar finish last year: Did not play

Of note: Has competed at the Valspar Championship once (in 2019, finishing 30th at even-par 284)

No. 118 Gary Woodland

Valspar finish last year: Cut after two rounds

Of note: Won on Innisbrook’s Cooperhead Course in the then-named Transitions Championship in 2011

No. 151 Adam Hadwin

Valspar finish last year: Cut after two rounds

Of note: Only PGA Tour victory was the 2017 Valspar Championship

No. 183 Henrik Stenson

Valspar finish last year: 63rd, 2-over 286

Of note: Last PGA Tour victory was 2017′s Wyndham Championship

Contact Mari Faiello at mfaiello@tampabay.com. Follow @faiello_mari.

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