Honda Classic tournament directors estimate attendance bump despite cold weather, Rory McIlory exit

Directors estimate up to a 10% increase in fans

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. -- - The Honda Classic is always a big draw for the area and in 2013 tournament directors said the Honda Classic performed even better than last year.

Executive Director Ken Kennerly said while the numbers are preliminary, he estimates an 8 percent to 10 percent increase in attendance.

"Tell you what, it's fabulous. I know it's a little chilly but there are a ton of folks out here," said Kennerly.

The estimated bump in foot traffic comes despite cold weather and the early exit of showcase Player Rory McIlory.

"You know Rory is going to be fine. He obviously wasn't playing that well, he had some medical issues and he's coming back next year of course," said Kennerly.

Honda Classic directors said the increased traffic has a lot to do with the expanded Bear Trap area. There are more seats, space and higher risers which Kennerly said creates a different atmosphere

"You know that's how in Palm Beach County we have to get people out here. Frankly, we got a lot of people out here that probably don't even know golf is going on. Well they know golfing is going on but they're certainly not watching it," said Kennerly.

But when people are watching the Honda Classic, it is those unexpected moments that keep them coming back year after year.

Kennerly said tournament directors will have a better idea of solid attendance numbers on Monday. Planning for the 2014 Honda Classic is already underway.

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