Torrey Pines unharmed by cosmetic damage from vandals

Updated: May 19, 2008, 1:55 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

SAN DIEGO -- Torrey Pines is beefing up security at its famed La Jolla golf course after the signature hole for next month's U.S. Open Championship was vandalized for the second time in a month.

Workers arriving Sunday found a two-word vulgarity etched into a sand trap on the south course's third green -- Torrey Pines' most photographed hole -- and several broken sprinkler heads. The workers also found heavy heel marks in the green, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune.

The incident follows another act of vandalism at the same hole about a month ago, in which an obscenity was scraped into the green's surface, allegedly with a flagstick. The cosmetic damage was fixed with routine mowing, San Diego city golf manager Mark Woodward told the Union-Tribune.

The incident follows another act of vandalism on the same green about a month ago. In that case, Woodward said, it is believed the flagstick was used to scrape an obscenity into the green's surface, but the effect was cosmetic and was fixed with routine mowing.

But the acts of vandalism prompted golf course managers to put up fencing near the green and to install a set of portable lights.

Reg Jones, the USGA's managing director of the U.S. Open, told the Union-Tribune that he could not discuss the specifics of the USGA's security plans. Torrey Pines is a public golf course and has a number of ways to reach it. The course will be closed to the public after Tuesday.

Information from The Associated Press is included in this report