THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem has been following the auto industry travails with great interest. Six Tour events are sponsored by automobile companies -- three American and three foreign -- so the proposed bailout of Ford, General Motors and Chrysler could have significant impact on the future schedule.
"It's hard to shed any more light than you probably see in the news coverage," Finchem said during a chat with the media during the Chevron World Challenge at Sherwood Country Club outside Los Angeles. "There's no answer yet as to what the future of their business capability is, which could obviously have an impact on their sponsorship and contracts with the PGA Tour. So we just honestly don't know and, candidly, I don't think they know."
Finchem didn't know the specific contract details, but did say the three events sponsored by the American car manufacturers (Buick Invitational, Buick Classic and the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic) had secure contracts for the next few seasons -- two through 2010 and one through 2012.
"I have spoken with them, but I'm pretty much just like you," Finchem added. "I'm following the news from Washington and, well, we'll just have to see."
-- John Marvel