The Forecaddie: PGA Tour players get first real taste of Doak

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The Forecaddie: PGA Tour players get first real taste of Doak

Forecaddie

The Forecaddie: PGA Tour players get first real taste of Doak

The Man Out Front will be watching the Sony Open for all of the usual reasons: the year’s first full field, the warm breezes and Waialae Country Club’s mysterious ability to produce eclectic leaderboard and eccentric finishes.

The club’s Seth Raynor-light design has started to take on more old school characteristics in recent years thanks to gradual execution of a Renaissance Golf Design master plan, with nudging from the PGA Tour Rules staff. But not until recently has the club allowed the design firm, headed by architect Tom Doak, to inject more extreme Raynor features into Waialae.

Besides the fun of getting to see the par-3 17th turned into a more exacting Redan homage after years as a pretty sleepy one-shotter, TMOF realized this will be the PGA Tour’s first real taste of Doak design work. That’s right, the architect of Pacific Dunes and Sebonack (with Jack Nicklaus) has never designed a course hosting the PGA Tour’s finest. And while Waialae has been gradually removing trees, tweaking mowing lines and reclaiming Golden Age era touches, this year’s newly revamped green complexes at the sixth and 17th holes will also give players their first taste of the increasingly-popular Raynor style.

The new penultimate hole was noticed by architecture aficionado Jim Herman, who told The Man Out Front he won’t be judging the Redan’s viability until after Sony play.

 But Doak did get a strong endorsement from unofficial Hawaii ambassador Mark Rolfing, who has long had a keen eye for architecture.

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