Klein on Design: No. 16 at Canterbury

Monday, May 18, 2009

Yards: 617

Architect: Herbert Strong

Where: Beachwood, Ohio

Event: PGA Senior Championship, May 21-24

It’s great because . . . this 1922 design makes brilliant use of the glacially formed moraine topography, nowhere with greater effect and drama than on this long, unreachable (in two) par 5. The unbunkered fairway faces due west, into the prevailing wind, and unfolds at the toe of a pronounced right-to-left slope that feeds the ball steadily downstream.

A dense stand of oaks protects the far right corner and blocks out a drive or second shot that hangs up in the right rough. It’s difficult to get a good view or a level lie for the approach to a green that is seemingly suspended in midair and pitched dramatically from back to front.

It would be even better if . . . the slopes weren’t so severe, particularly given modern turf heights and speeds. Too bad the fairway and green could not be softened just enough to allow the ball to hold up somewhat along the right side.

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