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There's a lot to do at the 2024 Genesis Invitational, Even if Golf is not your Game.

Not even Tiger Woods knows what to expect this year. But Even without Spain's John Rahm, the Genesis Invitational is not hurting for star power

Tiger Woods is usually the focus of attention at the Genesis Invitational, LA's stop on the men's professional golf tour, where he serves as the tournament host. However, February's weather sometimes takes center stage with pounding rain that wreaks havoc on the final rounds- and this may be one of those years.

Woods comes into this year's event at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades with much more modest expectations put upon him by the fans. Still working to recover from his near-fatal car accident after the tournament in 2021 that shattered his ankle and fractured his legs, as well as from multiple surgeries on his degenerating spinal discs, Woods has greatly cut back on his tour appearances.

Last year, Woods started strongly, finishing the first round with three straight birdies but faded on Friday to just barely make the cut with nothing to spare. He rebounded on Saturday, but slumped again on Sunday to finish in a tie for 45thout of the 67 players who made the cut.

Not even Woods knows what to expect this year. Four rounds like he shot on Thursday and Saturday last year would have put him in a tie for fifth place and won him $760,000. Four round like Friday and Sunday and he would be sitting in the clubhouse on the weekend, waiting to award the trophy as tournament host.

One sure thing is that there will not be a repeat winner this year. Last year's champion, Spain's John Rahm, opted to take guaranteed appearance money from the competing LIV Tour and will not be playing regular tour events. That's good news for the remaining golfers, like LA's own Max Homa, who finished second to Rahm last year and who won the event in 2021, but it does take one big name out this year's event.

Even without Rahm, the Genesis Invitational is not hurting for star power. Fourteen of the fifteen top-ranked male golfers in the official World Golf Rankings are playing, and all but nine of the top fifty. That includes Rory McIlroy, who has been consistently contending but not winning much in the US. He has been lights-out in Dubai, and won the 2023 Genesis Open in Scotland, but hasn't won a major since 2014. A win at Riviera would be a good omen for a good year.

Hometown favorite Homa, by reputation one of the nicest persons on the PGA tour, has always played well here and is an emerging star. Current World #1 Scottie Scheffler returns, along with San Diego native and #5-ranked Xander Schauffele. Also playing is Wyndham Clark, who won the US Open at Los Angeles Country Club this past July and the ATT Pebble Beach Pro-Am this month.

Resuming their rivalry will be Nick Taylor and Charley Hoffman, after Taylor won last weekend's Phoenix Open in a two-hole playoff. Other hot players in the field include UCLA's Patrick Cantlay, Norway's Viktor Hovland, and South Korea's Tom Kim and Kim Si-woo, as well as perennials such as Justin Thomas, Rickie Fowler, Jordan Spieth, Matt Kuchar, Jason Day, and Keegan Bradley.

The stars will be out, and hopefully they will not be obscured by cloud cover. Another rainstorm is lined up to arrive sometime this weekend. It is prediction roulette with storm systems in southern California, but right now it looks like the worst of it will hit after play on Sunday.

It was a clear, bright, and decently-warn day for the last practice round on Tuesday. It should stay that way through the first three rounds at least, providing great weather for spectating.

Fans coming to see the tournament should park in the structures surrounding the Third Street Promenade. Although parking is not free, complimentary shuttle buses will run from 7 am to 6 pm Thursday through Sunday. Tickets are available online through Ticketmaster. No tickets are sold at the gate.

Tiger Woods' TGR Learning Lab is providing complimentary tickets to kids to attend the tournament. All kids 15 and under will receive one complimentary grounds ticket when accompanied by a ticketed adult at the main entrance. Teachers and college students can get tickets at 25% off, and active, retired, reserve and National Guard military members can get complimentary grounds tickets- while supplies last.

Once inside, there are dozens of eating and drinking options, and sponsors, such as Genesis Motors, United Airlines, Citibank, Garrison Brothers Distillery, and Travis Matthews, offer games, giveaways, and prime seating. There's a lot to do at the Genesis Invitational, even if golf is not your game.


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