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Ronald Montesano

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #25 on: February 15, 2022, 02:53:51 PM »
I agree with Sir Bogey of the Snaking Putt: TOC is the zenith.


I played it once, and do not expect to return. If I knew that I could play it in reverse, I would return.
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Kalen Braley

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #26 on: February 15, 2022, 03:24:47 PM »
I agree with Sir Bogey of the Snaking Putt: TOC is the zenith.

I played it once, and do not expect to return. If I knew that I could play it in reverse, I would return.


Ronald, you may want to read his post again, if you claim to agree with him and think a return trip for the reverse routing is in order.

Matthew Mollica

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #27 on: February 15, 2022, 10:48:03 PM »
I'll go on the record - If I were able to book a round on TOC in reverse I'd definitely fly from Australia to play it. I know several others who would too. It would be one of the more historically significant rounds I'd ever play I imagine, as well as a novelty, and another link with golfers from generations past.
"The truth about golf courses has a slightly different expression for every golfer. Which of them, one might ask, is without the most definitive convictions concerning the merits or deficiencies of the links he plays over? Freedom of criticism is one of the last privileges he is likely to forgo."

Thomas Dai

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #28 on: February 16, 2022, 04:12:11 AM »
Iíd jump at the chance.
Hey Links Trust, how about one day per week?

Atb


PS - I reckon Iíve read mention somewhere that one of the pre-1900 Opens was played on the reverse course. Is this just a tall tale or is there some verification?

Ben Attwood

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2022, 06:19:51 AM »
Allowing it one day a week would ease the wear and tear in some parts, a more enjoyable solution than mats anyway. Perhaps for a month in the winter play it in reverse only? Perhaps offset by the increase maintenance of needing more short grass for it to be truly fun, as Tom described.


Having seen the video a few architectural points stood out. The 1, 17 and 18 complex really shone. The super wide 1st/18th fairway had added significance when playing diagonally across it. Shades of Brancaster there. Having the burn behind the green for the approach the the 17th green (1st green in the conventional routing) was pretty cool. The 1st (17th green in the conventional routing) and the road hole provided an interesting approach with the penalties right and left rather than short and long.




James Bennett

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #30 on: February 16, 2022, 06:27:49 AM »
It is 15 years next month since several GCA'ers played the three-day event at The Old Course, comprising Old (anti-clockwise, or right hand side), New and Old Reverse (clockwise, or left hand side).


Great memories, and some great names played.
Imagine 1 and 18 playing diagonally with no centre line hazards (everyone seemed to play a similar line on a one-off play, straight at the pin.  Then 9 and 10 playing diagonally with centreline hazards (I think).


Imagine the terror of playing 7 to a pin just over the most ferocious bunker you can imagine (11th typical pin) with no backstop.


And the ability to play in the alternate direction to 16 holes (8 double greens).


Yes, the mowing is poor.
Yes, the 12th hole is poor (although Tom Doak had worked out how to play it, as a wide dogleg left).
Yes, the incoming balls from tee shots played to the right was too common.


And yes, an unforgettable experience.


I described it as dancing with your wife's twin sister.  It looked similar, but played completely differently.


Oh to do it all again, with friends.


James B


ps the East Lothian trip that Tony M arranged prior was exceptional as well.
pps  there was a 2-ball in front of us who had driven up from near Bath that day, both in their 20's, just to play The Old Course.  They had to play the Reverse that day, not their expected one-off game of the Old Course.  I don't know what they expected for such a long day of driving and 'different' golf.
« Last Edit: February 16, 2022, 06:30:13 AM by James Bennett »
Bob; its impossible to explain some of the clutter that gets recalled from the attic between my ears. .  (SL Solow)

Tom_Doak

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #31 on: February 16, 2022, 07:38:30 AM »


PS - I reckon Iíve read mention somewhere that one of the pre-1900 Opens was played on the reverse course. Is this just a tall tale or is there some verification?


I believe that's correct, and that it was the Open won by Willie Auchterlonie.  He would have known the course better than most that way around!

Marty Bonnar

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #32 on: February 16, 2022, 08:29:14 AM »
It is 15 years next month since several GCA'ers played the three-day event at The Old Course, comprising Old (anti-clockwise, or right hand side), New and Old Reverse (clockwise, or left hand side).


Great memories, and some great names played.
Imagine 1 and 18 playing diagonally with no centre line hazards (everyone seemed to play a similar line on a one-off play, straight at the pin.  Then 9 and 10 playing diagonally with centreline hazards (I think).


Imagine the terror of playing 7 to a pin just over the most ferocious bunker you can imagine (11th typical pin) with no backstop.


And the ability to play in the alternate direction to 16 holes (8 double greens).


Yes, the mowing is poor.
Yes, the 12th hole is poor (although Tom Doak had worked out how to play it, as a wide dogleg left).
Yes, the incoming balls from tee shots played to the right was too common.


And yes, an unforgettable experience.


I described it as dancing with your wife's twin sister.  It looked similar, but played completely differently.


Oh to do it all again, with friends.


James B


ps the East Lothian trip that Tony M arranged prior was exceptional as well.
pps  there was a 2-ball in front of us who had driven up from near Bath that day, both in their 20's, just to play The Old Course.  They had to play the Reverse that day, not their expected one-off game of the Old Course.  I don't know what they expected for such a long day of driving and 'different' golf.


Itís not 15 years surely!
 :o
PS Iím glad you said Ďdancingí!
 ;D
F.
PPS Can you remember who all played? Any photos???
« Last Edit: February 16, 2022, 09:52:50 AM by Marty Bonnar »
The White River runs dark through the heart of the Town,
Washed the people coal-black from the hole in the ground.

Will Lozier

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ? New
« Reply #33 on: February 16, 2022, 12:22:38 PM »
Here is a link to a decent article with the full yardage book of the Reverse routing!


https://www.golfshake.com/news/view/14472/The_Old_Course_at_St_Andrews_in_Reverse.html

Cheers
« Last Edit: May 20, 2024, 09:53:41 AM by Will Lozier »

MCirba

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #34 on: February 16, 2022, 12:41:20 PM »
Will,

That's cool, thanks.   The following images are courtesy of Melvyn Morrow.



« Last Edit: February 16, 2022, 12:43:11 PM by MCirba »
"Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent" - Calvin Coolidge

https://cobbscreek.org/

Doug Bolls

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #35 on: February 16, 2022, 01:09:17 PM »
I played TOC in reverse April 2, 2007 and remember having a blast trying to figure it out - even with a caddie.  We were a group of 8 on a golf trip to Scotland - I think for 6 of the group playing TOC Reverse was their introduction to the course.  Can you imagine that?  Playing it the same way Old Tom and his buddies played it back in the very early days - mowing conditions aside, "Playing the Old Lady Backwards" was one of my great experiences in golf.


I remember we had to sign up for a 2 day package with the Links Trust - one round reverse and one round modern routing. 


Looks like they offered that again last November to celebrate St. Andrews Day - To answer the OP question, I would say if you ever get the opportunity, take it.



James Brown

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #36 on: February 16, 2022, 04:35:05 PM »
Itís really not a great experience - partly because they donít mow some of the areas you want to hit to.


Honestly (and modestly  ;) ) playing The Loop forward and back is a far better experience than The Old Course, because both directions work well, and because The Loop changes direction more often to provide more variety.




Kind of a big gauntlet to throw downÖ


I played TOC in reverse about a dozen years ago in April and have played it normally 4 times now.  It was fun to do it once backwards and it certainly made me appreciate the course even more.  Iíd say there are perhaps a few more scary shots in reverse mode but you donít have the images of them burned in your brain like you do in normal.  Everyone knows to avoid the road hole bunker for example or know to fear the coffins. The 7/11 green complex was certainly even scarier going the other way. 

Adrian_Stiff

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #37 on: February 17, 2022, 05:57:59 AM »
You are better off just walking it in my opinion. It is pretty poor to play as that plan and with a lot of customers on the course quite dangerous, places you need to hit are also rough grass and lots of holes no real fairway around the green. The original reverse routing for hole 8 to 11 are as the current course. Holes 8 9 10 and 11 did not change. I am pretty sure 12 did not play back to the 6th green via the 7th as well. Few other things did not happen as they do today.
January's back in the late 60s/early 70s they used to reverse for a whole month. Stopped maybe 1973 (not sure). Was a big gap before they tried it again.....there is a good reason for that!

A combination of whats good for golf and good for turf.
The Players Club, Cumberwell Park, The Kendleshire, Oake Manor, Dainton Park, Forest Hills, Erlestoke, St Cleres.
www.theplayersgolfclub.com

Adrian_Stiff

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #38 on: February 17, 2022, 06:04:25 AM »


PS - I reckon Iíve read mention somewhere that one of the pre-1900 Opens was played on the reverse course. Is this just a tall tale or is there some verification?


I believe that's correct, and that it was the Open won by Willie Auchterlonie.  He would have known the course better than most that way around!
I never found out if it was a myth or not. If it was played in reverse then it was Bob Martins second win. Somebody told me its was an Amateur Championship that was played in reverse. I have a picture of a 'championship' I think they are driving from the 5th or 6th tee in the reverse. Willie Auchterlonie won the open at Prestwick.
A combination of whats good for golf and good for turf.
The Players Club, Cumberwell Park, The Kendleshire, Oake Manor, Dainton Park, Forest Hills, Erlestoke, St Cleres.
www.theplayersgolfclub.com

Jeff Schley

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #39 on: February 17, 2022, 11:46:17 PM »
You are better off just walking it in my opinion. It is pretty poor to play as that plan and with a lot of customers on the course quite dangerous, places you need to hit are also rough grass and lots of holes no real fairway around the green. The original reverse routing for hole 8 to 11 are as the current course. Holes 8 9 10 and 11 did not change. I am pretty sure 12 did not play back to the 6th green via the 7th as well. Few other things did not happen as they do today.
January's back in the late 60s/early 70s they used to reverse for a whole month. Stopped maybe 1973 (not sure). Was a big gap before they tried it again.....there is a good reason for that!
I found my first play at TOC to need a caddie for playing lines, I can only imagine the traffic on the course combined with "where do I hit it?" would need a caddie to play it in reverse. I would want to play it in reverse just for the novelty of the most iconic course in the world.
"To give anything less than your best, is to sacrifice your gifts."
- Steve Prefontaine

Simon Barrington

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #40 on: April 14, 2024, 06:28:14 PM »

PS - I reckon Iíve read mention somewhere that one of the pre-1900 Opens was played on the reverse course. Is this just a tall tale or is there some verification?

I believe that's correct, and that it was the Open won by Willie Auchterlonie.  He would have known the course better than most that way around!
Deleted (others had already responded)
« Last Edit: April 15, 2024, 03:18:58 AM by Simon Barrington »

Adrian_Stiff

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #41 on: April 18, 2024, 04:38:30 AM »
Nearly 50 years ago, it was in about 1977 or 1978 I was an assistant professional at Tracy Park. My pro was Grant Aitken (who designed a few courses in the 70s). Tom Scott visited Grant, Tom was then the editor for Golf Illustrated which was the industry weekly magazine that you bought to know who had won the previous weeks tournaments! Tom was with Laurie Auchterlonie whose dad was Willie the 1893 winner. Various conversations happened but quite a bit was about the Reverse Course and Laurie was saying how much they (R & A- LT) had got it wrong about the original course, he said it what his dad and the old members had told him. The key points I remember were;


Up to about 1972 every January for the month they reversed the course to help with wear and divot patterns. It stopped because it was unpopular and it was unpopular because it did not follow what used to be the 'good' reverse course and some of the holes were now not good.


Laurie was adament that the loop 8-9-10-11 was always the same in both routes in old days.


He said that the 12th/7th reverse played over the same ground as did the 13th/6th reverse.


There was no 1st green so the 17th/2nd reverse was the same ground. Playing to the first green came much later.


I have always had this in my mind when I have walked it. All the good holes are really on the nine we think of as the back nine and they play pretty good both ways. Remember the original course was kind of up the left side, when it was expanded to the right by removing gorse ect the course worked well one way but less so the other. For that reason the reversible course got used less as it was too busy to play golf over the same ground.
A combination of whats good for golf and good for turf.
The Players Club, Cumberwell Park, The Kendleshire, Oake Manor, Dainton Park, Forest Hills, Erlestoke, St Cleres.
www.theplayersgolfclub.com

Sean Walsh

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Re: Is playing TOC in reverse one of the great experiences in golf ?
« Reply #42 on: April 27, 2024, 01:36:20 AM »
I also played it in 2007 and loved the experience. As others have noted it wasnít all it could be because they donít change the mowing patterns from the normal course. As a result there are at least 3 or 4 holes that just didnít work properly - I.e reverse to the 2nd, 6th, 16th, 15th, 14th


Itís too long ago to have a really clear memory, but any course that starts with the Reverse 1st canít be too bad.

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