U.S. Senior Open at Warren Golf Course should be 'intimidating'

USGA/Fred Vuich

U.S. Senior Open at Warren Golf Course should be 'intimidating'

Golf

U.S. Senior Open at Warren Golf Course should be 'intimidating'

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SOUTH BEND – Course setup always provides a potential talking point, if not outright controversy, when the U.S. Golf Association stages one of its major championships.

It should be no different June 27-30 when the 40th U.S. Senior Open comes to the Warren Golf Course on the campus of Notre Dame.

“It’s going to be intimidating,” Ben Kimball, USGA senior director of championships, said at Monday’s news conference. “Fair yet intimidating.”

Even with seven former U.S. Open winners and a dozen former U.S. Senior Open winners in the field, the USGA hopes to mold the 20-year-old Coore and Crenshaw design into a “firm and fast” test of the best seniors in the world.

“Let’s face it, when you play in the USGA national championship, it should be a little intimidating,” Kimball said. “We want them to have butterflies in their stomach. We want them to be worried about that first tee shot. We want nervous fans. And I think we’ll see it when we come back here in June.”

The 6,943-yard championship course will play at par 70 with the 495-yard fourth hole being played as a par 4. The rough will be grown out to at least 3 ½ inches and postage-stamp greens will play faster than ever.

“I think we’re going to see shot-makers excel here,” Kimball said. “Players have to think about what happens when their ball hits the ground. They have to be very thoughtful all the way around. This is just a phenomenal test of golf.”

This will mark the 22nd USGA championship played in Indiana and the second U.S. Senior Open. In 2009 at Crooked Stick in Carmel, Fred Funk claimed the title with a 72-hole scoring record for the event.

This will also mark the first time a USGA national championship has been contested on a university golf course.

Since opening in 1999, Warren Golf Course has been a frequent stop for USGA signature events. The U.S. Senior Open qualifier was held there for a second time in 2018; the U.S. men’s amateur qualifier was held there seven times, most recently in 2014; and the men’s U.S. Open and U.S. men’s Mid-Amateur qualifiers have been held there a combined three times.

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