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Purser excited for 18th Toshiba

Executive director has plenty of work to do, but there's a payoff and it's seen throughout the week.

March 10, 2012|By Steve Virgen
  • Jeff Purser, seen here in a 2010 photograph, is the tournament director for the Toshiba Classic.
Jeff Purser, seen here in a 2010 photograph, is the tournament… (DON LEACH, Daily…)

Jeff Purser, the executive director of the Toshiba Classic, maintains a busy and hectic life during the tournament, which is March 12-18 at the Newport Beach Country Club.

But Purser is used to the heavy schedule, and he and his staff have been getting ready well before the actual week ensues.

He took time out of his busy schedule to answer five questions before the Toshiba Classic began.

Question: What is the most unique feature from this 18th annual Toshiba Classic?

Answer: A few things are important.

First, we've moved a week later in the year, and of the four we have had in the past, it's my favorite week out of the four various "calendar weeks" we have had. When we are the third week of March, we are the same as the opening weekend of the NCAA Championships. One might think that the NCAA would be a competitor and detriment to the tournament, but the truth is that it helps to create a wonderfully "charged" atmosphere with people enjoying the golf and following their favorite teams.

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Second, the Saturday is St. Patrick's Day, making the day very festive. We have a tremendous setup at our sports bar between No. 10 and 18 fairways with 60-inch Toshiba television walls ready to show basketball and the Toshiba Classic broadcast.

It is a tremendous field that will be among the best on the Champions Tour all year. So, all fans joining us will see a tremendous competition.

Question: When is the toughest day for work during the week and why?

Answer: The most challenging is Tuesday, because it starts very early for the community breakfast, and lasts until about 10 p.m. when the Pro-Am Pairings Party concludes. However, the time frame just makes it long, the stress is making certain that all of the pairings are done correctly, with specific times, pairings and sponsor needs all taken into consideration. This process literally takes a full week, and inevitably a major sponsor has changes, or a professional's time changes, or something along those lines, and that one little change can lead to the need to modify up to 12 or so pairings. The pro-am is crucial to our success. Additionally, the operations team is working hard to finish all final details on the construction, go through final "walk through" of all the logistics with parking and bussing, security and other things.

Question: Why has Newport Beach and the Newport Beach Country Club been the home for the Toshiba Classic for so long?

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