The winds are still howling at Kapalua, but the players are finally on the course with the Tour sticking to their plan to send groups off at 11:10 a.m. local (4:10 p.m. ET). It didn't take long for the wind to have an impact, however, as Matt Kuchar, who was going off No. 10 with Webb Simpson, had his ball blow off the tee. There was a lengthy conversation on the tee with the rules officials, and both Kuchar and Simpson expressed their hesitancy about playing in the extremely windy conditions.
Ian Poulter, playing in the group behind Simpson and Kuchar, also got involved in the conversation with the rules official. Poulter was heard stating his concern about injuring himself while taking a full cut at ball that's oscillating on the tee.
Kuchar also had to back off his putt on the 10th green a couple times -- the biggest concern and reason why play had been canceled so far this weekend. Players are accustomed to playing in high winds, but with Kapalua being on the side of a mountain, the course's large greens are almost completely exposed and it's been hard for the balls to set still on the putting surface.
While the 2013 PGA Tour season is now officially underway, it will be interesting to see how far they get this afternoon, given the issues that have already arisen in just the first 15 or 20 minutes out on the course. If play does continue, the rounds should take forever and the scores, on a course that typically has lots of red numbers available, should be high.
Just how windy is it? This picture taken of the 11th green earlier in the day should give you an idea, courtesy of Zach Johnson:
11 green at Kapalua this morning. Thx to PGA Tour photographer Stan the Man! twitter.com/ZachJohnsonPGA…— Zach Johnson (@ZachJohnsonPGA) January 6, 2013