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October 11, 2010 | 4:34 p.m.

Test run

Ron Balicki
No. 10 at Karsten Creek
No. 10 at Karsten Creek

STILLWATER, Okla. – Oklahoma State walked away with the team championship. UCLA sophomore Pontus Widegren headed back to California with the medalist trophy.

But when all was said and done Sept. 28 at the 22nd Ping/Golfweek Preview, the golf course was the big winner.

At Karsten Creek, site of the 2011 NCAA Division I Men’s Championship, players and coaches in the 15-team Preview field got a good indication as to what they might expect come the first week in June. What they no doubt learned is that par will be a premium score and players had better keep it ...

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Categories: Ron Balicki, Men, Architecture
October 11, 2010 | 4:13 p.m.

An early stress test

Bradley S. Klein
No. 8 at Cape Fear National
No. 8 at Cape Fear National

LELAND, N.C. – The game was born on firm ground, and when a course sits on marshland there had better be plenty of room to play. That is especially the case on a course such as Cape Fear National at Brunswick Forest, which does double duty as a daily-fee facility and as centerpiece of a vast real-estate development.

The plan is ambitious. Brunswick Forest’s developer, Lord Baltimore Capital Corp., has planned 7,000 homes for the 4,500-acre, master-planned community. That’s a bold blueprint, though the property, sitting six miles south of Wilmington, is in a region blessed ...

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September 22, 2010 | 1:55 p.m.

Welsh games

Bradley S. Klein
The U.S. should feel at home on The Twenty Ten Course.
The U.S. should feel at home on The Twenty Ten Course.

Complete Coverage | Tour Blog | Follow via Twitter: @GolfweekMag, @4caddie




Click here for a Rater's Notebook of the Twenty Ten Course



NEWPORT, Wales – Just in time for a major sporting event, a little country gets a big golf course.

For Wales, a nation the size of Massachusetts and with the population of Chicago, the Oct. 1-3 Ryder Cup presents a chance to emerge from the protective cloak of the United Kingdom. Since the awarding of the event in 2001, Welsh officials have worked with tourism leaders to establish Wales as a unique destination. There’s more to offer than castles ...

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Categories: Travel, Architecture
September 14, 2010 | 12:50 p.m.

The upper class

Bradley S. Klein
The Course at Yale, No. 1 on 2010 Golfweek's Best Campus Courses list.
The Course at Yale, No. 1 on 2010 Golfweek's Best Campus Courses list.


Click here for a list of the 2010 Golfweek's Best Campus Courses



We’d be the last to suggest that the way to choose the right college is to opt for the one with the best golf course. But given the quality of golf on campuses throughout the U.S., there probably are worse ways to decide.

Golfweek’s Best Campus Courses list – 30 tracks spanning 22 states – runs the gamut, from elite private schools and service academies to massive state universities and a small, women’s-only school.

As if proof were needed that quality golf doesn’t need ...

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September 9, 2010 | 4:36 p.m.

2010 Golfweek’s Best Campus Courses

The Course at Yale, No. 1 on 2010 Golfweek's Best Campus Courses list.
The Course at Yale, No. 1 on 2010 Golfweek's Best Campus Courses list.


Click here for a story of the 2010 Golfweek's Best Campus Courses list



2010 Golfweek’s Best: Campus Courses


1. The Course at Yale 7.43

Yale, New Haven, Conn.

1926, C.B. Macdonald, Seth Raynor


2. Taconic Golf Club 6.88

Williams, Williamstown, Mass.

1927, Wayne Stiles


3. Palouse Ridge Golf Club 6.83

Washington State, Pullman, Wash.

2008, John Harbottle


4. The Rawls Course 6.47

Texas Tech, Lubbock, Texa

2003, Tom Doak


5. Stanford Golf Course 5.92

Stanford, Stanford, Calif.

1930, W. Bell, J. Harbottle, G. Thomas Jr.


6. University Ridge Golf Course 5.90 ...

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August 19, 2010 | 4:20 p.m.

First impression

Bradley S. Klein
The second hole at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash.
The second hole at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash.


Complete Coverage | Amateur Blog | Twitter: @GolfweekSMartin, @Golfweek_Lavner



This year’s U.S. Amateur at Chambers Bay in University Place, Wash., would be interesting enough just given the unique nature of this links-style golf course. But there’s added interest for viewers at home since this year’s championship is a preview of the U.S. Open to be held here in 2015. Moreover, in the wake of the “Bunkergate” furor that saw last week’s PGA Championship end controversially, there’s reason to think the sandy hazards at Chambers Bay could make for a similar dilemma.

During the first two ...

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August 9, 2010 | 11:16 a.m.

Lakeside illusion

Bradley S. Klein
No. 6 at Whistling Straits
No. 6 at Whistling Straits

KOHLER, Wis.- The tweaking never stops, even on a layout that’s No. 3 on the Golfweek’s Best list of modern courses in the U.S.

The Straits Course at Whistling Straits, a 1997 Pete Dye design, already has proved that it’s tournament tough when it played host to the 2004 PGA Championship (won by Vijay Singh) and 2007 U.S. Senior Open (Brad Bryant).

Dye is renowned for tinkering with his courses, though in this case he was encouraged by owner Herb Kohler to make numerous changes, including at the oft-questioned 18th.

“It’s a great golf ...

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August 8, 2010 | 8:16 p.m.

Hole to watch: No. 18 at Whistling Straits

Bradley S. Klein
No. 18 at Whistling Straits
No. 18 at Whistling Straits

489 yards, par 4

What’s distinctive: Whoever heard of a course on which club officials don’t know how many bunkers there are? Before the 2004 PGA Championship on the Straits Course, the superintendent told me, “We stopped counting at 1,100.” It certainly looks like Pete Dye scattered sand everywhere, especially when the course is viewed from the back tees.

In an ingenious move of sheer evil, Dye outfoxed his architecture colleagues by building his back tees lower rather than higher. He believes that will confuse good players more, and he’s all for that.

At the Straits ...

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July 12, 2010 | 8:44 a.m.

Players get reacquainted with Old Course

Jim McCabe
Tiger Woods during a practice round Sunday on the Old Course at St. Andrews.
Tiger Woods during a practice round Sunday on the Old Course at St. Andrews.


Complete coverage | British Open blog | Follow via Twitter: @4caddie, @GolfweekMag



ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – The sights and sounds of a walk around the Old Course are sometimes more flavorful early in the morning when the wind is down and the commotion less distracting.

At first glance, it appeared there’d be a crossing of major forces, what with Phil Mickelson on the first tee and Tiger Woods on the 17th green. Surely, they’d be meeting somewhere along the massive piece of historic sod that combines the first and 18th fairways, but it was not to be.

Woods went directly from ...

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July 11, 2010 | 10:26 p.m.

Green acres

Bradley S. Klein
The approach to the green on the par 4, 13th hole ‘Hole O’Cross,’ which shares it’s green with the par 5, 5th hole on the Old Course at St Andrews.
The approach to the green on the par 4, 13th hole ‘Hole O’Cross,’ which shares it’s green with the par 5, 5th hole on the Old Course at St Andrews.


Complete coverage | British Open blog | Follow via Twitter: @4caddie, @GolfweekMag



In making the shift from the U.S. Open to the British Open, players who confronted the smallest greens in championship golf will have to deal with the largest putting surfaces of any major site.

At Pebble Beach Golf Links, attention focused on the elusive shape and quality of greens that averaged a mere 3,500 square feet.

At St. Andrews, the putting surfaces are much larger – though how much larger depends on how you count.

One of the Old Course’s defining quirks is that it has only 11 ...

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July 11, 2010 | 10:26 p.m.

St. Andrews needs better finishing hole

James Achenbach
The 18th hole at St. Andrews.
The 18th hole at St. Andrews.


Complete coverage | British Open blog | Follow via Twitter: @4caddie, @GolfweekMag



ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – Here at the cradle of golf, I am surveying the 18th hole from tee to green. Great golf course, terrible finishing hole.

If the 18th at St. Andrews were a better hole, I might argue that the Open Championship is the most compelling major. After all, the Open comes back here every five years. In so many respects, St. Andrews is the face of the Open.

However, reflecting on the majors in general and finishing holes in particular, the Masters is more exciting than the others. Why ...

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July 5, 2010 | 4:34 p.m.

Hole to watch: No. 2 at Oakmont

Bradley S. Klein
No. 2 at Oakmont
No. 2 at Oakmont


U.S. Women’s Open coverage | Twitter: @Golfweek_Baldry, @GolfweekSMartin



325 yards/250 yard, par 4

What’s distinctive: The few players in the 2010 field who competed here in the 1992 U.S. Women’s Open scarcely will recognize the course, given all of the trees that have been cut down, the resulting windswept feel of the place and the presence of those wavy rough grasses. As for the holes themselves, the par 4s at Oakmont are just about evenly split between long and short ones.

The long ones can accommodate a perfectly placed run-up approach, but on the handful ...

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Martin Kaufmann
David McLay Kidd at Huntsman Springs
David McLay Kidd at Huntsman Springs

DRIGGS, Idaho – Growing up in Scotland, David McLay Kidd said his dream was to be an assistant superintendent or even, with a little luck, a head superintendent like his dad, Jimmy. Then came a fortuitous meeting with Mike Keiser and, eventually, the assignment to build the first course at Bandon Dunes Resort, a job that gave him rock-star status in the world of golf architecture.

Kidd was recalling his whirlwind rise from obscurity recently as he showed me and some other writers around Huntsman Springs, his newest creation and clearly one of his proudest accomplishments. At Huntsman Springs, owned by ...

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June 24, 2010 | 10:13 a.m.

Woodward leaves GCSAA

Golfweek Staff
Mark Woodward
Mark Woodward

Less than two years after naming Mark Woodward as its chief executive, the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America once again is looking for a CEO.

Woodward, who took over in July 2008 after preparing and shepherding Torrey Pines through that summer’s U.S. Open, resigned with the GCSAA on June 22. No details were given about the separation other than that Woodward resigned “to pursue other career interests.”

His resignation was effective immediately, according to the GCSAA.

The GCSAA, based in Lawrence, Kan., said its Board of Directors will hire an executive search firm by mid-July that will ...

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June 13, 2010 | 10:38 p.m.

Setup man

Bradley S. Klein
Mike Davis
Mike Davis

Mike Davis doesn’t know how many days he spends on the road a year, just that it’s a lot.

“I’ve never counted them,” says the U.S. Golf Association’s senior director of rules and competitions. “I don’t want my wife to know. But it’s probably about half a year’s worth.”

As the man responsible for running the USGA’s major golf championships, Davis spends plenty of time in hotels and airports and conducting business from a hands-free cell phone in his car. His Lexus LS 460 – courtesy of a deal between the automaker ...

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