Golf Club Atlas

GolfClubAtlas.com => Golf Course Architecture => Topic started by: Sean_A on November 25, 2017, 06:00:24 AM

Title: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Sean_A on November 25, 2017, 06:00:24 AM
It has been a down year and I expect this trend to continue into the future.  However, I still played some very fine courses and a few jumped into my the top 25 of my Happy 100. 

MOST SURPRISING NEW PLAY COURSE: One new course stood out this year....Corballis Links (R). I usually look for adventurous designs and Corballis delivers in spades.  This is a far from perfect course, but if folks canít have fun playing this links they should find a new game to play.  Corballis shot straight into the top 20 of my Happy 100.

http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,64673.0.html (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,64673.0.html)
 
RUNNER -UP: Reigate Heath (R).  I am really taken by this course.  The design is simplicity taken to the extreme and yet polished.  Of course, the lovely setting is helpful, but donít make the mistake in thinking Reigate is a dumb blonde. 

http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,64197.0.html (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,64197.0.html)

MOST DISAPPOINTING NEW PLAY COURSE: No entry.  All the new courses I played this year lived up to expectations and more.
 
BEST NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Barton Hills (1*) starts slowly, but by the 15th I was more than impressed, I was charmed.  The site is good, but in no way outstanding.  The stand out feature of the design is the greens...an eclectic mix which add spice to the game. 

http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,65034.msg1550918.html#msg1550918 (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,65034.msg1550918.html#msg1550918)
 
RUNNER-UP: Reigate Heath
 
BEST NEW PLAY LINKS: Goswick (1*) is a terribly under-rated course.  I not only found the course to be engaging, but fun and tough. The design is very smart in how it uses a central dune.

http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,64104.0.html (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,64104.0.html)

RUNNER UP: Corballis

MOST SURPRISING SECOND (third or fourth!) PLAY COURSE: Minch Old (R)....I didnít think I would like this course as much as when I first played it, but instead my admiration grew stronger and this despite some crazy narrow fairways.

http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,48765.msg1101368.html#msg1101368 (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,48765.msg1101368.html#msg1101368)

FAVOURITE NEW PLAY LINKS: Goswick just nips Corballis.   
 
FAVOURITE NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Reigate Heath in a landslide
 
BEST AFFORDABLE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: By affordable I mean under £40 (~$50).  Only a handful of courses qualify and Kington (1*) remains the king of the hill. 

http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,30926.0.html (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,30926.0.html)
 
BEST MODERATELY PRICED COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: By moderate I mean between £40 and £55 (~$70) and no member invitation, deals or other special circumstances involved. Goswick is a serious candidate for top 50 GB&I...its that good.   
 
BEST COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Pinehurst #2 (3*)  I am taken aback at how much better this course is after the C&C reno.  The driving aspect of the game now has meaning. I can truly say that I havenít played a better course.  Those folks who said #2 was a 10 prior to the reno need to find a new scale! 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOO5S4vxi0o (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KOO5S4vxi0o)

http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,65082.msg1551336.html#msg1551336 (http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,65082.msg1551336.html#msg1551336)
 
FAVOURITE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Kington remains top of the heap. 


The Scale

3*  Don't miss for any reason
2*  Plan a trip around this course
1*  Worth the expense of an overnight stay
R    Worth a significant day trip (no more driving than it takes to play and have drinks)
r     A good fall back on course/trip filler
NR Not recommended

Lets see your highlights/awards for 2017!

Ciao
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Thomas Dai on November 25, 2017, 10:51:04 AM
ĎUsual Suspectsí, including one of my favís, plus some newbies I wouldnít mind visiting as well. Nice. I did wonder at the absence of wonderful Welshpool but then I checked and that was 2016/last year!
For me, the highlights are two Iíve surprisingly not been to before, and both fine value/£ on the pocket as well. The splendid, but hard on the legs, at least for me, Pennard, and the delightful, easy walking RND/Westward Ho! As to replays, splendid Southerndown grows on me with each and every play.


As a later edit, Iíd like to mention the Codrington course at the Players Club near Bristol. This is Adrian Stiff of this parishís course, or rather facility, as there is also another 18-hole course, the Stranahan, and a 9-hole par-3 course on-site as well.
I really enjoyed the Codrington. Long though the yardage may, with numerous challenging shots if you care to take them on, it is nicely playable by all with some thought on the several holes where water comes into play as playing line options are often available. Quiet a bit of width, not tree lined, careful angles, several holes without green side bunkers and some really cunning short/drivable for some, par-4ís of the think-3 take-6/7/8 variety. 
The clubhouse also holds a quite fantastic collection of golfing memorabilia. I would have done a comprehensive photo-tour but recent Photobucketisms have prevented this so hereís a link to look at - [size=78%]http://www.theplayersgolfclub.com/courses/codrington/ (http://www.theplayersgolfclub.com/courses/codrington/)[/size]

Atb




Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Peter Pallotta on November 25, 2017, 11:15:02 AM
Always nice to read about Sean's journeys.
The Yank Awards have become very compelling/influential to me.
For some reason, of all the greats I've read about and/or watched on TV, I was always most suspicious about #2 - doubtful of its status as a 10, unsure of whether I'd enjoy playing it as much I 'should', and frankly a little bugged at the price-point.   
But when the usually measured and level-headed Yank grants it a 3* and gushes over it, I know that I must seriously re-think my views. 

Peter
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Tom_Doak on November 25, 2017, 11:19:40 AM
I don't have many of Sean's categories covered, since I haven't been to the UK at all this year [until next week] and I don't have any idea how many courses I've seen with green fees under 50 pounds sterling.  [Probably not many!]  But I can share my Top Ten Discoveries of 2017 [out of 65 new courses seen] from my just-completed Xmas letter:


10.  Guadalajara CC, Mexico - John Bredemus
  9.  Hubbelrath GC (East), Germany - Bernard von Limburger
  8.  Shek O CC, Hong Kong - architect unknown!
  7.  Taiwan G & CC - Rokuro Akaboshi
  6.  Sand Valley (Sandbox) - Coore & Crenshaw
  5.  Pine Beach, South Korea - David Dale
  4.  Royal Limburg, Belgium - Frank Pennink
  3.  Whistling Rock, South Korea - Ted Robinson Jr. / Eric Iverson
  2.  Royal Sart-Tilman, Belgium - Tom Simpson
  1.  South Cape, South Korea - Kyle Phillips


Certainly not the usual suspects!



Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Peter Pallotta on November 25, 2017, 04:15:47 PM
Tom - if/when the time comes it will be interesting to read if ďnot the usual suspectsĒ have anything in common.

I think I can see something in common with many of the little/tier two gems that Sean profiles, ie

like with holes 3-5 at Reigate Heath, itís striking how, far from being a constraint or detrimental to quality architecture, small sites and tight spaces can actually be a prod to imaginative design ó and with that comes variety, charm, individuality/uniqueness, and a real sense of place.

I think those kind of courses were quite ďcommonĒ during that period of English inland design, with necessity being the mother of invention.

Does that apply to any of your top 10 discoveries of the year?

Peter





Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Tom_Doak on November 25, 2017, 04:35:12 PM
itís striking how, far from being a constraint or detrimental to quality architecture, small sites and tight spaces can actually be a prod to imaginative design ó and with that comes variety, charm, individuality/uniqueness, and a real sense of place.

I think those kind of courses were quite ďcommonĒ during that period of English inland design, with necessity being the mother of invention.

Does that apply to any of your top 10 discoveries of the year?



Peter:


It certainly applies in spades to Shek O, in Hong Kong.  It is only 4500 yards long, and even to get to that length it resorts to several instances of stepping back and teeing off across the previous green to get some length on the next hole.  It's a crazy little course in a wonderful setting, but there are also a lot of good golf shots to hit there.
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Sean_A on November 26, 2017, 05:35:30 AM
itís striking how, far from being a constraint or detrimental to quality architecture, small sites and tight spaces can actually be a prod to imaginative design ó and with that comes variety, charm, individuality/uniqueness, and a real sense of place.

I think those kind of courses were quite ďcommonĒ during that period of English inland design, with necessity being the mother of invention.

Does that apply to any of your top 10 discoveries of the year?



Peter:


It certainly applies in spades to Shek O, in Hong Kong.  It is only 4500 yards long, and even to get to that length it resorts to several instances of stepping back and teeing off across the previous green to get some length on the next hole.  It's a crazy little course in a wonderful setting, but there are also a lot of good golf shots to hit there.

Tom

If that floats yer boat you must make it to Corballis.

(https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4196/35275347032_951b6f1e97_b.jpg) (https://c1.staticflickr.com/5/4196/35275347032_951b6f1e97_b.jpg)

Ciao
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Ronald Montesano on November 26, 2017, 09:26:40 AM
Mine are here http://www.golfclubatlas.com/forum/index.php/topic,65281.0.html


as inspired by yours.
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Sean_A on November 27, 2017, 04:33:55 AM
Tom

Your list inspired me to check out Royal Sart.  It is difficult to get an impression of the course for all the trees, but tell me, how does 7 & 9 work?

Ronald

I am pleased you liked Essex....more ammo for me.  I haven't played the course, but it is high on my US bucket list.   

Ciao
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Tom_Doak on November 27, 2017, 07:45:31 AM

Your list inspired me to check out Royal Sart.  It is difficult to get an impression of the course for all the trees, but tell me, how does 7 & 9 work?



Yes, Sart-Tilman would be much better with about 1,000 fewer trees, but of course they can't cut them down in Europe.


The doglegs like the 7th and 8th do reward a player who can work the ball off the tee.  The 7th is a bit odd because there's a deep ravine going across the fairway waiting for anyone who does try to rip one around the corner ... you would have to know the hole quite well for that to pay off.  The 9th is more straightforward, there's a bit of a reverse camber so you have to take the inside line if you're going to hit a long drive and get within reach of the green in two.  The last four or five holes were a bit disappointing after everything that comes before.
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Peter Pallotta on November 27, 2017, 09:04:41 AM
Sean - Corballis didn't (for me) appeal as much on first sight as did your inlands, but the more I read your profile the more striking it becomes, for two reasons in particular:
1. I can't imagine there's a modern architect working in a 'dunes setting' today who has/would create golf holes like 5, 14, 15 and 17.   
2. As far I as can see/tell, there's not a "template" (or even a very "familiar") hole in the lot
It is appealing, yes - but I have to admit it feels also more than a little outside my comfort zone.
A function, probably, of having played no true links courses; it doesn't 'fit my eye' as well as the average English inland.
Anyway, always good to re-read the profiles

Peter 
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Sean_A on November 27, 2017, 01:06:35 PM
Pietro

Like Pennard, Perranporth and Painswick, Corballis is a classic marmite course.  I will usually fall in line for the great terrain and accept its inherent problems and Corballis has awkward moments. 

Tom

Thanks.  I saw the ravine on 7, but I didn't know about the reverse camber on 9...a tough feature to pull off well especially with what looks to be a narrow fairway.  I am convinced the only way to pull of the RC well is to offer a wide fairway or at the very least a way to cheat on the inside. 

Ciao
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Wayne Wiggins, Jr. on November 29, 2017, 11:14:59 AM
MOST SURPRISING NEW PLAY COURSE: Old Elm 3*. Had heard good things about the recent restoration work, and was duly impressed especially with the greens and green complexes.
 
RUNNER -UP: Bandon Trails 3*. Really enjoyed this course that meanders through the woods at the resort. Second favorite on property to Pacific Dunes.
 

MOST DISAPPOINTING NEW PLAY COURSE: Muirfield Village. Had to play it. Once. And that was enough.    

BEST NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE:  Yeamanís Hall 3*. Great Raynor template holes. Looking forward to one day getting back to see the work done by Jim Urbina

RUNNER-UP: Old Elm 

BEST NEW PLAY LINKS: Old Macdonald 3*. Donít think this is technically links, but itís on the coast and it was a new play for me.

RUNNER UP: The Ocean Course (Kiawah) 3*. Again, donít think itís technically a links, but itís on the coast and it was a new play for me.

MOST SURPRISING SECOND (third or fourth!) PLAY COURSE: Aronimink. The Hanse restoration of Rossí original design is outstanding. 3*

FAVOURITE NEW PLAY LINKS: Old Macdonald      

FAVOURITE NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Old Elm
   

BEST AFFORDABLE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR:
   

BEST MODERATELY PRICED COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: TPC Harding Park. If I had an up to date SF Residents card, it would be in the ďAffordable CourseĒ category. A solid golf course, worth playing in town after securing access to the privates in the neighborhood. r 

BEST COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Yeamanís Hall

FAVOURITE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Shoreacres 3*
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: MCirba on November 29, 2017, 11:45:32 AM
I love reading this thread and hope to contribute but I've played fewer new courses (20).so far this year than any time in several decades.


That being said, I have some good stuff setup for December so hopeful I can provide something informative closer to year end.
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Sean_A on November 30, 2017, 05:41:35 AM
MOST SURPRISING NEW PLAY COURSE: Old Elm 3*. Had heard good things about the recent restoration work, and was duly impressed especially with the greens and green complexes.
 
RUNNER -UP: Bandon Trails 3*. Really enjoyed this course that meanders through the woods at the resort. Second favorite on property to Pacific Dunes.
 

MOST DISAPPOINTING NEW PLAY COURSE: Muirfield Village. Had to play it. Once. And that was enough.    

BEST NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE:  Yeamanís Hall 3*. Great Raynor template holes. Looking forward to one day getting back to see the work done by Jim Urbina

RUNNER-UP: Old Elm 

BEST NEW PLAY LINKS: Old Macdonald 3*. Donít think this is technically links, but itís on the coast and it was a new play for me.

RUNNER UP: The Ocean Course (Kiawah) 3*. Again, donít think itís technically a links, but itís on the coast and it was a new play for me.

MOST SURPRISING SECOND (third or fourth!) PLAY COURSE: Aronimink. The Hanse restoration of Rossí original design is outstanding. 3*

FAVOURITE NEW PLAY LINKS: Old Macdonald      

FAVOURITE NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Old Elm
   

BEST AFFORDABLE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR:
   

BEST MODERATELY PRICED COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: TPC Harding Park. If I had an up to date SF Residents card, it would be in the ďAffordable CourseĒ category. A solid golf course, worth playing in town after securing access to the privates in the neighborhood. r 

BEST COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Yeamanís Hall

FAVOURITE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Shoreacres 3*


Cheers Wayne. Among the bevy of interesting courses to see around Chicago I have Shoreacres as the must see, for me anyway.  Your thoughts on Old Elm are intriguing...any photos?


Ciao
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: David Davis on November 30, 2017, 08:46:18 AM
Sean,


I'll give this a go and add a category or two and not answer a couple perhaps.


     MOST SURPRISING NEW PLAY COURSE: Iíve got 3 courses here, played an awful lot of golf while traveling this year. Ardfin was the most surprising, even when I kind of expected it would be very good. Second would have to go to Arrowtown which was wonderful old school lay of the land and quirky with everything as firm and fast as ever and not a bunker on the course. 3rd goes to Gavea Golf Club, also lay of the land on a crazy property full of quirky features.

 
 BEST NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Ellerston


 RUNNERs-UP: Ganton, Peachtree and Prairie Dunes
 
 BEST NEW PLAY LINKS: Tara Iti
 
 RUNNER UP: Paraparuamu Beach and Cabot Cliffs (though I donít consider it a links but some do)
 
 


 MOST SURPRISING SECOND (third or fourth!) PLAY COURSE: Oakmont was just way better the second time and knowing the course a bit. Caslte Stuart and Colorado Golf Club. With a honorable mention to Ballyneal.


 FAVOURITE NEW PLAY LINKS: Tara Iti   
 
 FAVOURITE NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Peachtree
 
 BEST AFFORDABLE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: By affordable I mean under £40 (~$50).  This might not be a realistic category for anywhere outside of where you live Sean. Maybe Arrowtown, Royal Hague or De Pan (only with our reciprocal agreement though).


 BEST MODERATELY PRICED COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Another one hard to answer. Iíll say Paraparuamu Beach though I think itís a little more expensive. Otherwise I canít answer this either.


 BEST COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Royal Melbourne West


Most Memorable 18 holes (you walk off and everything sticks out perfectly because they are all so different): Ardfin

Best New Play: Tara Iti and Ardfin

 FAVOURITE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Tara Iti and Ardfin 
 
 
 
 


 
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Wayne Wiggins, Jr. on November 30, 2017, 10:28:12 AM
MOST SURPRISING NEW PLAY COURSE: Old Elm 3*. Had heard good things about the recent restoration work, and was duly impressed especially with the greens and green complexes.
 
RUNNER -UP: Bandon Trails 3*. Really enjoyed this course that meanders through the woods at the resort. Second favorite on property to Pacific Dunes.
 

MOST DISAPPOINTING NEW PLAY COURSE: Muirfield Village. Had to play it. Once. And that was enough.    

BEST NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE:  Yeamanís Hall 3*. Great Raynor template holes. Looking forward to one day getting back to see the work done by Jim Urbina

RUNNER-UP: Old Elm 

BEST NEW PLAY LINKS: Old Macdonald 3*. Donít think this is technically links, but itís on the coast and it was a new play for me.

RUNNER UP: The Ocean Course (Kiawah) 3*. Again, donít think itís technically a links, but itís on the coast and it was a new play for me.

MOST SURPRISING SECOND (third or fourth!) PLAY COURSE: Aronimink. The Hanse restoration of Rossí original design is outstanding. 3*

FAVOURITE NEW PLAY LINKS: Old Macdonald      

FAVOURITE NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Old Elm
   

BEST AFFORDABLE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR:
   

BEST MODERATELY PRICED COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: TPC Harding Park. If I had an up to date SF Residents card, it would be in the ďAffordable CourseĒ category. A solid golf course, worth playing in town after securing access to the privates in the neighborhood. r 

BEST COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Yeamanís Hall

FAVOURITE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Shoreacres 3*


Cheers Wayne. Among the bevy of interesting courses to see around Chicago I have Shoreacres as the must see, for me anyway.  Your thoughts on Old Elm are intriguing...any photos?


Ciao


Sean,
Unfortunately no pix. However, Drew Rogers, who is doing the work there, has a few good ones on his site: https://www.jdrewrogers.com/41/old-elm-club


In addition to very pure greens (some of the best I played this year for sure) the other interesting thing you'll find are very wide fairways... and getting wider. When we were there in mid-September they were pushing the edges of many of the holes' fairway surfaces out a couple yards.
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: John Kirk on November 30, 2017, 10:42:08 AM
Sean,


I'll give this a go and add a category or two and not answer a couple perhaps.


I wanted to see your list, so I made it visible.  Such an impressive list.  True to my home course bias, I seem to be one of the very few people who think Ballyneal is a better golf course than Tara Iti.  However, Tara Iti may be the greatest place to play golf I've ever been to, and if I played it 20, 30, 50 times, maybe I'd change my mind.  Maybe.

Here's David's list, unencrypted:


  MOST SURPRISING NEW PLAY COURSE: Iíve got 3 courses here, played an awful lot of golf while traveling this year. Ardfin was the most surprising, even when I kind of expected it would be very good. Second would have to go to Arrowtown which was wonderful old school lay of the land and quirky with everything as firm and fast as ever and not a bunker on the course. 3rd goes to Gavea Golf Club, also lay of the land on a crazy property full of quirky features.
 
   
  BEST NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Ellerston
 
  RUNNERs-UP: Ganton, Peachtree and Prairie Dunes
   
  BEST NEW PLAY LINKS: Tara Iti
 
  RUNNER UP: Paraparuamu Beach and Cabot Cliffs (though I donít consider it a links but some do)
 
 
 
  MOST SURPRISING SECOND (third or fourth!) PLAY COURSE: Oakmont was just way better the second time and knowing the course a bit. Caslte Stuart and Colorado Golf Club. With a honorable mention to Ballyneal.
 
  FAVOURITE NEW PLAY LINKS: Tara Iti   
   
  FAVOURITE NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Peachtree
   
  BEST AFFORDABLE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: By affordable I mean under £40 (~$50).  This might not be a realistic category for anywhere outside of where you live Sean. Maybe Arrowtown, Royal Hague or De Pan (only with our reciprocal agreement though).
 
  BEST MODERATELY PRICED COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Another one hard to answer. Iíll say Paraparuamu Beach though I think itís a little more expensive. Otherwise I canít answer this either.
 
  BEST COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Royal Melbourne West
 
 Most Memorable 18 holes (you walk off and everything sticks out perfectly because they are all so different): Ardfin
 
 Best New Play: Tara Iti and Ardfin
 
  FAVOURITE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Tara Iti and Ardfin 
 
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: David Davis on November 30, 2017, 12:43:55 PM
John,


Thanks for your help on that and nice comments. It's very strange as on my screen when I posted it looked perfect. Just some glitch I guess but I appreciate you fixing it.


As to your comment about Ballyneal. I had such a great time revisiting it this year, could of stayed for a month though my body wouldn't of been able to hold up to the amount of golf my brain and heart wanted to play. It was an OD kind of day and we finished playing the new par 3 which was also a blast, then drove to Prairie Dunes. No doubt, Ballyneal is a great course in a great setting but still when I think about the holes and to be honest after a couple plays I can't remember them all but I certainly see them all as excellent. What sets Tara Iti apart for me would be a few holes that hit me after several plays as truly world class as, in great holes I will never forget and with one of them I might be biased by the setting slightly.


The 6th and 7th holes and the two par 3's, the 13th and 15th. The 15th being the one that I'll admit having a slight biased due to the setting which is like something out of a storybook or Lord of the Rings, on top of that it's an amazing par 3 with incredible green surrounds and very interesting to play in varying winds.


Now obviously these are all debatable things and we are comparing two great courses with arguably no weak holes but that is what sets them apart in my mind.


Also I might add the turf at Tara Iti is some of the best you are going to find.



Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Sean_A on December 05, 2017, 01:32:51 PM
Sean,


I'll give this a go and add a category or two and not answer a couple perhaps.


I wanted to see your list, so I made it visible.  Such an impressive list.  True to my home course bias, I seem to be one of the very few people who think Ballyneal is a better golf course than Tara Iti.  However, Tara Iti may be the greatest place to play golf I've ever been to, and if I played it 20, 30, 50 times, maybe I'd change my mind.  Maybe.

Here's David's list, unencrypted:


  MOST SURPRISING NEW PLAY COURSE: Iíve got 3 courses here, played an awful lot of golf while traveling this year. Ardfin was the most surprising, even when I kind of expected it would be very good. Second would have to go to Arrowtown which was wonderful old school lay of the land and quirky with everything as firm and fast as ever and not a bunker on the course. 3rd goes to Gavea Golf Club, also lay of the land on a crazy property full of quirky features.
 
   
  BEST NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Ellerston
 
  RUNNERs-UP: Ganton, Peachtree and Prairie Dunes
   
  BEST NEW PLAY LINKS: Tara Iti
 
  RUNNER UP: Paraparuamu Beach and Cabot Cliffs (though I donít consider it a links but some do)
 
 
 
  MOST SURPRISING SECOND (third or fourth!) PLAY COURSE: Oakmont was just way better the second time and knowing the course a bit. Caslte Stuart and Colorado Golf Club. With a honorable mention to Ballyneal.
 
  FAVOURITE NEW PLAY LINKS: Tara Iti   
   
  FAVOURITE NEW PLAY INLAND COURSE: Peachtree
   
  BEST AFFORDABLE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: By affordable I mean under £40 (~$50).  This might not be a realistic category for anywhere outside of where you live Sean. Maybe Arrowtown, Royal Hague or De Pan (only with our reciprocal agreement though).
 
  BEST MODERATELY PRICED COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Another one hard to answer. Iíll say Paraparuamu Beach though I think itís a little more expensive. Otherwise I canít answer this either.
 
  BEST COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Royal Melbourne West
 
 Most Memorable 18 holes (you walk off and everything sticks out perfectly because they are all so different): Ardfin
 
 Best New Play: Tara Iti and Ardfin
 
  FAVOURITE COURSE PLAYED THIS YEAR: Tara Iti and Ardfin 
 

David

Talk about Peachtree a bit.  It is one of those famous courses that I know very little about.

Ciao
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Scott Warren on December 06, 2017, 12:19:20 AM
David D,


Am I right to take away from your Awards post that you think Ellerston is a better golf course than Prairie Dunes?
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: David Davis on December 06, 2017, 05:56:19 AM
Sean,


Peachtree was a big surprise for me even though I'd heard very good things about it. I'm really just not a big fan of RTJ's courses, most of the ones I've seen are on commercial real estate development. What I didn't realize before this year was that his early work was hugely influenced by Stanley Thompson and what you find at Peachtree for me has a lot of comparisons to what you find at St. Georges in Toronto.


The property is extremely dynamic with huge rolls and elevation changes that I didn't expect while driving there. The greens and surrounds are excellent and everything is in perfect condition. There is a lot of space out there and interesting strategy off nearly all tees. Risk reward par 5's and a nice mix of short and long par 4's.


The only possible negative for me was a fair bit of high low high playing but it wasn't forced more like that's just the way the property was. I'd be really surprised if much dirt was moved when the course was created though I'm not certain. On top of that the course is in absolute perfect condition.




Scott,


The short answer is yes when you look at the entire picture (and I'm certain you will likely disagree), but they only have a difference of a couple places in my personal ranking. I can only judge by the courses I saw on the days I saw them and while I don't want to steal this thread with my explanation, let me tell you this for starters. PD was the softest course I played this entire year and that was a major disappointment from what I had been led to believe. When I talked with their team they said the course was pretty much ready for their big member guest the following week and they were very happy with it. It was very lush and green, in perfect condition if that's how you like it. For me that was enough to affect my personal view on the course a little. I did really enjoy the routing (which is superior to that of Ellerston), variation, walkability and there were many excellent holes of which 2 and 17 may have been my favorites. All my rounds were played in very strong winds which I enjoy. Around the greens the course never dried out at all and it wasn't possible to bump anything into the greens or land approaches short allowing them to run on.


Ellerston's main demerits for me come from it not really being walkable, I think it was 95 degrees when I was there or I would of tried. Also it's really tough so definitely not a course for all ability levels but that was Packer's request and to be fair it's not harder than the likes of Pine Valley or many other courses ranked ahead of it. While it was close as mentioned there were simply more holes that I liked and remembered really well at Ellerston. On top of that there was no comparison in the way they condition the course, firm and very fast.


 
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Scott Warren on December 06, 2017, 07:31:57 PM
Fair enough. Given how you saw them, I can understand it a little more. The Prairie Dunes I got to play for a few days baked out in August with the wind blowing would have been a lot less interesting if it was mudball conditions like you've described.
Title: Re: 2017 Yank Awards
Post by: Sean_A on December 12, 2017, 11:50:25 AM
Sean,

Peachtree was a big surprise for me....What I didn't realize before this year was that his early work was hugely influenced by Stanley Thompson and what you find at Peachtree for me has a lot of comparisons to what you find at St. Georges in Toronto.

David

This is a very interesting observation.  Could you name a few similarities in the designs which made an impression on you?

Ciao