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Michael Wharton-Palmer

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Re:Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #25 on: April 12, 2007, 12:02:26 PM »
George,
Marvelous piece that you have put together...I to will refer to this during the event..great source of so much information.
Does anybody miss at least some of the trees?

Jeff Doerr

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Re:Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #26 on: June 13, 2007, 10:02:22 PM »
worthy of a....BUMP!
"And so," (concluded the Oldest Member), "you see that golf can be of
the greatest practical assistance to a man in Life's struggle.

Mike_Cirba

Re:Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #27 on: June 13, 2007, 10:16:15 PM »
George,

Let me add to those who have already commended you for your wonderful work on this series.

If anything, I believe Oakmont is a course that belies the simple labels of penal, strategic, and heroic, much like a great leader often isn't easily categorized as conservative, liberal, or moderate, or more often, is seen as all those things simultaneously.  

Life, and golf courses, are rarely as simple and clear-cut as we tend to abstract them for convenience, and if nothing else, Oakmont should teach us all to avoid easy, pat answers and to relish the complexities of a mysterious world.

George Pazin

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #28 on: September 09, 2008, 12:32:58 PM »
bumping for a lurker friend.
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

Rick Sides

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #29 on: September 09, 2008, 07:50:44 PM »
Hey George,
Saw your message and thought I'd throw in my two cents.  Oakmont is great in many ways.  Got a chance to play it a year ago and as I reflect back on it, it gets better by the day.  Oakmont is definitely penal but in a fun way.  Playing it was like the same excitement you got trying to ask a girl on a date in school who was out of your league- you know you will get rejected, but hell, it was worth the try! It is a beautiful course set in western PA and it flows gracefully.  I love that you can see almost every hole.  There is trouble around every corner.  The rough is think, the bunkers along the fairway are brutal, and the greens- what can you say but, 3 putt.  Something inately in humans love pain as long as we have fun, and in the end we can say at least we tried.

TEPaul

Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #30 on: September 09, 2008, 08:21:51 PM »
George:

Wonderful work on your Oakmont thread. My summary thought on Oakmont is it's pretty much in a class all by itself and in many little interesting ways. I guess in the final analysis we can thank the Fownses for that, particularly W.C.---his unique spirit and opinions about what a course should be lives on there pretty palpably, except for that it's a country club and he definitely didn't want that. It's not a course for everyone's taste that's for sure but it does define something about GCA and what it defines for me is why the spectrum should be wide in GCA. Oakmont is pretty much at one end of that spectrum and always has been. If the architecture doesn't get you the maintenance practices will and that's the way W.C. wanted it.

Mike_Cirba

Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #31 on: September 09, 2008, 08:30:27 PM »
Hey George,
Oakmont is definitely penal but in a fun way.  Playing it was like the same excitement you got trying to ask a girl on a date in school who was out of your league- you know you will get rejected, but hell, it was worth the try!

Rick,

That's the best analogy I've heard in a long time.   

Perfect!   ;D

Rick Sides

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #32 on: September 09, 2008, 09:00:12 PM »
Thanks Mike.  That course is really magificent in many ways

Mike_Cirba

Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #33 on: September 09, 2008, 09:22:52 PM »
Rick,

I've only walked it, but when I read your post, I understood exactly what you're talking about.   

There's a sort of sublime masochism involved...a "I'm not worthy" submission to a superior foe that's somehow liberating and educational all at the same time.

Thanks for reminding me what I found so fascinating in studying the holes there.

Deucie Bies

Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #34 on: September 10, 2008, 10:28:30 AM »
I have played it about 10 times and enjoy it so much more now.  It is the hardest test of golf I have ever played.  I used to get very frustrated, but now I have a much better attitude out there and have a great time.  I am playing it again next week and can't wait.  The greens will be rolling even faster than usual!

George Pazin

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #35 on: September 10, 2008, 01:11:22 PM »
Thanks for the additional thoughts. Oakmont's a special place.
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

Curt Coulter

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #36 on: September 10, 2008, 01:26:53 PM »
You forgot mention a few guys named Jones, Sarazen and Snead as past champions at Oakmont...but how about the runners-up to include Woods,
Palmer and Watson, to name a few. You have a great way of summing up Oakmont and all it has to offer.

I'll add these comments as well. As far as design variety goes, how about having 5 2-shot holes under 400 yards  and none of them are birdie holes? And the 12th hole is a 3-shotter where par is a very good score, which the pros did not like. I am still amazed every time I go out there that H. C. Fownes and his son, W. C. Fownes Jr., never designed another golf course and over 100 years later it is still one of the Top 10 in the world...I know the same can be said of George Crump.

Oakmont has a saying that, "We punish our members but torture our guests." Every person I have out there says they love the abuse that Oakmont dishes out and I am sure very few places can say that. I'll stop for now but it is great to hear all the wonderful comments about Oakmont.

Keep it in the short grass. 
Keep it in the short grass.

George Pazin

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #37 on: September 10, 2008, 01:31:13 PM »
And the 12th hole is a 3-shotter where par is a very good score, which the pros did not like.

My favorite par 5 in golf. :) It was amazing how many times the hole was won with pars - or even bogeys! - during the 2003 Am. And it's not due to the old stand by defense most use, water.

Love the saying, btw.
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

George Freeman

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #38 on: June 30, 2010, 06:24:47 PM »
Bump in preperation for next week's Women's US Open.

This is an absolutely wonderful resource re: Oakmont. 

Great work George and Ryan!
Mayhugh is my hero!!

"I love creating great golf courses.  I love shaping earth...it's a canvas." - Donald J. Trump

Patrick_Mucci

Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #39 on: June 30, 2010, 09:04:09 PM »
George,

Your summary is very good, however, if I had to make one critical comment it would be that the rough for the Men's Open was exceptionally difficult.

Having played Oakmont again, last Tuesday, I'd have to say that the rough is far more manageable.
There are three cuts, immediate, intermediate and outer.

The presentation today is one that the membership and their guests can handle.
I didn't think that the membership and their guests could handle the previous Open's presentation.

Okamont, like a few clubs in the U.S. has a unique culture, a purer form of the golfing culture we admire.

I'm anxious to watch the Women's Open to see where they're playing from and how they handle the conditions, provided Mother Nature co-operates.

Oakmont combines a great membership with a great course with a great history/tradition with a great golfing culture and a great maintainance meld.

George Pazin

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #40 on: July 01, 2010, 10:28:15 AM »
Thanks for the update, Pat. I agree the rough can be brutal. I don't know if I've said it on this thread, but I've often wondered how the course would play sans rough, like ANGC 15 years ago. I think the greens and bunkers would provide more than enough defense for most golfers. Of course we'll never find out! Not that that's a bad thing, it fits the Oakmont ethos.



Thanks for the kind words, George.
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

Carl Rogers

Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #41 on: July 01, 2010, 11:13:27 AM »
Two comments /questions;

1.  I think that the super short par 4, on this course the 17th, has more impact on the player being late in the round than being at the beginning couple of holes.  Agree or disagree??

2. Will the green speeds for the Women's Open be comparable to the Men's Open?

Phil McDade

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #42 on: July 01, 2010, 11:19:26 AM »
Carl:

Re. the 17th -- I think that might have been explored in some of the Oakmont threads referenced earlier here.

I think how the hole is set-up will play a big role in how the 17th is played. If it's a true risk-reward set-up, with birdie possible and perhaps even eagle -- then, yes, it could have a big impact, particularly on a late-pairing golfer chasing a leader in the clubhouse (just to cite one scenario). If in particular the green surrounds are viewed as too penal -- and Big Mouth from all reports is plenty penal in any kind of set-up -- my guess is that it may just become a fairway wood/wedge hole for the women without that risk/reward dynamic. My sense is that the USGA got it just about right, in particular on the final day, for the men's open a few years ago (if my memory banks are not too fuzzy...).


Patrick_Mucci

Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #43 on: July 01, 2010, 11:34:34 AM »
Carl,

I don't think the position of the 17th hole in the routing has a material affect on how you play it in the course of a normal round.

However, coming later in the round makes the play of a drivable par 4 more dramatic for the fans and viewers.

In a tournament where every golfer is aware of the position of the field, play of the closing holes by those near the lead is always affected, irrespective of the architectural qualities of those particular holes.

Bill_Yates

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #44 on: July 01, 2010, 11:36:13 AM »
George,
Here is a general comment I read somewhere that pretty well confirms that there are many in golf who also love Oakmont and find it a worthy and lasting competitive venue.

"With the exception of St Andrews, it is the oldest course in the world where National Championships are still being played""
Bill Yates
www.pacemanager.com 
"When you manage the pace of play, you manage the quality of golf."

George Pazin

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #45 on: July 01, 2010, 12:06:50 PM »
2. Will the green speeds for the Women's Open be comparable to the Men's Open?

I believe the USGA has stated they will attempt to replicate the setup for the 2007 Open as closely as possible, with the exception of the tees used (obviously) and some fairway widths.
Big drivers and hot balls are the product of golf course design that rewards the hit one far then hit one high strategy.  Shinny showed everyone how to take care of this whole technology dilemma. - Pat Brockwell, 6/24/04

Bill_McBride

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Re: Summary thoughts on Oakmont - please add yours
« Reply #46 on: July 01, 2010, 12:15:01 PM »
Carl,

I don't think the position of the 17th hole in the routing has a material affect on how you play it in the course of a normal round.

However, coming later in the round makes the play of a drivable par 4 more dramatic for the fans and viewers.

In a tournament where every golfer is aware of the position of the field, play of the closing holes by those near the lead is always affected, irrespective of the architectural qualities of those particular holes.

Patrick, did you try to drive the green there at # 17?

The times I played the course, the size and depth of the greenside bunkers made me quite happy ro hit a 3-iron out in front, SW on and make a relatively simple par.   

There aren't too many of those at Oakmont!

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