The locals might become a hazard for the men and women competing in the 2016 Olympic golf tournament in Rio de Janeiro. No, we’re not talking about rowdy fans. We’re talking about gators.
Some big gators have been found lurking on the Gil Hanse-designed course, and British firm Ransomes Turf, which is maintaining the facility that will host golf’s return to the Olympic program in 10 months, shot footage of one particular guy making his way from near a green to one of the course’s water hazards.
Gators have become residents on the course after losing some of their natural habitat in the development of the golf course and surrounding luxury apartment and condo complexes near the 18-hole track in the Barra de Tijuca neighborhood. Organizers tried to assuage any concerns about the gators on Tuesday during a news conference.
“We’ll have a strategy in place that will minimize any possibility of a player or spectator coming across these,” said Anthony Scanlon, executive director of the International Golf Federationa. “The other thing to remember about these alligators is, if they do arrive, they arrive at night and we won’t be playing golf at night. I don’t think we’re going to get a bite.”
Uhhh. That looks like sunlight. This gator may not be the size of that 15-footer who calls a Florida golf course home, but keep your eyes peeled next summer.