19.05.2022 - 16:27
Actualització: 13.06.2022 - 10:05
Catalonia could host the 2031 Ryder Cup, one of the most important golf events in the world. The tournament pits North American players against European golfers, and the 2031 edition of the event would be held in PGA Catalunya golf resort in the northern city of Caldes de Malavella if the candidacy is chosen, as first reported by Catalan newspaper La Vanguardia and later confirmed by VilaWeb.
PGA Catalunya, led by Irish millionaire Denis O’Brien, was one of the options considered in 2015 for the 2022 edition of the Ryder Cup, which will be held in Rome, Italy, between 29 September and 1 October 2023. “The 2031 Ryder Cup candidacy can be taken into account as it was almost chosen back then,” Jordi Masquef, Sports deputy for the Girona regional administration, Diputació de Girona, said to Catalan News. “Back then, the candidacy in Catalonia was rejected for a big European capital, Rome” he added.
PGA Catalunya sources confirmed to Catalan News their intentions to host big events, such as the Ryder Cup, in Catalonia. La Vanguardia has reported that the Spanish government has confirmed their support of €96 million in investment. Girona’s regional authority is expected to add €4 million more. Investment could reach €570 million from the competition itself, and €590 million more could come from golf tourism. However, Masquef denied any budget agreement yet, for the third most followed sporting event in the world “after the Football World Cup and the Olympic Games,” he explained. About 270,000 spectators from 90 different countries travel to the Ryder Cup. The competition is followed in 180 countries live on television.
Despite the willingness of PGA Catalunya to host the event, the final decision has to come from the public administration. Therefore, the newspaper confirms that the Catalan president, Pere Aragonès, will meet in the next weeks with Ryder Cup president, Guy Kinnings.
Barcelona’s international events
The Ryder Cup in 2031 would be hosted in Caldes de Malavella. However, the candidacy will carry the name Costa Brava-Barcelona. This is one of the big events the Catalan capital wants to take part in after the pandemic hiatus. In 2024, the city will host the America’s Cup, a sailing competition that brings a large economic impact on the capital.
The city is also part of a potential bid to host the 2030 Winter Olympic Games, which are currently still up in the air. For the moment, Pyrenees residents need to greenlight the bid in a referendum for a candidacy shared with the neighbouring region of Aragon.