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Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #225 on: January 02, 2010, 08:03:11 PM »
Sean:

Humor me -- put together your top 25 USA listing -- I'll be sure to compile a listing of my best international alone and my best one combined.

thanks ...

Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #226 on: January 02, 2010, 08:16:37 PM »
After giving my choices a bit more thought -- I'd have Mauna Kea drop to a position of my second best 25 in the USA.

The best desert course I have played and one that would be included is Whisper Rock -- the original 18 by Gary Stephenson and Phil Mickelson. The course flies considerably under most people's radar and has a range of desert design elements that make it, for me at least, the 21st century updated version of what Desert Forest first did years ago.

WR is quite playable but the holes work their way in concert with the desert -- you don't see all the flashy stand apart elements that so many others provide. Great natural fall-offs for any wayward approaches and the site lines are tough to adjust to when teeing off as so many of the landing areas are hard to see which is also a strength.

Sean_A

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #227 on: January 02, 2010, 08:43:50 PM »
Sorry Matt

Changed my mind.  I just don't want to do a best of.

Ciao
« Last Edit: January 24, 2011, 06:31:01 PM by Sean Arble »
New plays planned for 2024: Ashridge, Kennemer, de Pan, Blackmoor, Eindhoven, Hilversumche, Royal Ostend & Alnmouth

Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #228 on: January 03, 2010, 01:55:13 AM »
Sean:

Mainly Pennsy and MI courses.

Curious to know what you liked so much at OH/S.

Thanks ...

Sean_A

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #229 on: January 03, 2010, 04:50:25 AM »
Sean:

Mainly Pennsy and MI courses.

Curious to know what you liked so much at OH/S.

Thanks ...

Matt

The greens at Oakland Hills are superb and one of the very best sets I have ever seen.  Its a shame the course has been littered with so many fairway bunkers and harsh rough.  Both serve to restrict play and I believe essentially reduce the effectiveness of the greens.  Meaning the really awkward angles of approach are eliminated because recovery shots for the handicap player have to go back to the fairway rather than sometimes having a go at the green.  The course was better when I was a teenager.  As it stands now, OH is not really one of my favourites which when you think about it is crazy given the greens and rolling land.  

Ciao
« Last Edit: January 24, 2011, 06:31:41 PM by Sean Arble »
New plays planned for 2024: Ashridge, Kennemer, de Pan, Blackmoor, Eindhoven, Hilversumche, Royal Ostend & Alnmouth

Ronald Montesano

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #230 on: January 03, 2010, 11:07:18 AM »
That's the first I've heard about the Oakland Hills greens.  Are they original Ross/his partners greens or did RTJ have at them back in the 1950s?
Coming in 2024
~Elmira Country Club
~Soaring Eagles
~Bonavista
~Indian Hills
~Maybe some more!!

Anthony Butler

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #231 on: January 03, 2010, 11:57:29 AM »
Better late than never. In order of enjoyment:

1. CPC (If heaven exists, you would be a lifetime member at this course)
2. RMW (Most fun greens to putt, bar none)
3. Pebble Beach (coming over the hill at 6, and for the next hour and half, better than sex)
4. WFW (didn't find it hard as some. suits my long game and the caddies are unbelievable green readers)
5. St. Andrews (Amazing so many architectural concepts sprung from one course. Perhaps higher if not always played during a Scottish monsoon)
6. Morfontaine (If you play golf to relax, this is the place.)
7. NSWGC (Nature meets Nurture)
8. Riviera (Best course on a piece of property where houses border some holes.)
9. Pine Valley (I appreciate it, I really do. Not how sure many times I could stomach a 73-74 turning into 84 due to a couple of bad kicks.)
10. Quaker Ridge (underrated. only a lick behind WFW)
11. Congressional Blue (ditto. Not sure how many US Opens it takes before it gets it due. Anti-RTJ bias keeps it lower in the rankings?)
12. Olympic Club (Gruelling, but not monotonous)
13. Oakmont (What it must be like learning how to putt again after a stroke)
14. Pinehurst #2 (Land overrated. Course less so.)
15. Kingston Heath (One of the few sandbelt courses that could be improved.)
16. Muirfield (Hard to see the appeal while you're playing it admittedly)
17. Muirfield Village (really nothing like the course above, good on it's own terms)
18. Royal Adelaide (Second best Mackenzie course in Australia)
19. Pasatiempo (Kind of an awkward piece of property, there would be more good holes otherwise)
20. National Moonah (Mostly dislike Norman courses, except for this one)
21. Oak Hill East (The acme of an American tree-lined private course.)
22. Essex County Club (Better than the Member's course at The Country Club. Period)
23. TPC Sawgrass (Like a Golfing thrill ride. Put your $150 in the slot and away you go.)
24. Carnoustie (Forget a ball, I almost lost a club in the rough in June '99. Drove it the same place as Van de Velde on 18 and made 5 the smart way.)
25. The Shattuck (New Hampshire's Pine Valley, minus $5 million.)
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Sean Leary

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #232 on: January 03, 2010, 12:21:56 PM »
Anthony,

The Shattuck? Really?
« Last Edit: January 03, 2010, 12:35:33 PM by Sean Leary »

Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #233 on: January 03, 2010, 12:34:34 PM »
Anthony:

Interesting you say QR is just a "lick behind" WF/W.

Did you ever play WF/E because it's big brother the West is a good ways ahead of QR in my mind. The reason many people don't see it that way is that the West simply provides so little love and hugs. The East has also some of the finest green surfaces but often gets lost in the shadow of its big brother. QR is the junior-lite version. Be curious to know if you have ever played Fenway -- more bite than many might imagine.

You'll also have to explain the Congressional choice. Where is the architecture compelling -- save for the finale which is the only hole of note I can see there. Tough. No doubt. Worthy of architectural interest? Hardly.

Can you explain your Pinehurst #2 statement -- "land overrated - course less so." Who ever said the land was "overrated?"

Thanks ...

Anthony Butler

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #234 on: January 03, 2010, 12:44:51 PM »
Anthony:

Interesting you say QR is just a "lick behind" WF/W.

Did you ever play WF/E because it's big brother the West is a good ways ahead of QR in my mind. The reason many people don't see it that way is that the West simply provides so little love and hugs. The East has also some of the finest green surfaces but often gets lost in the shadow of its big brother. QR is the junior-lite version. Be curious to know if you have ever played Fenway -- more bite than many might imagine.

You'll also have to explain the Congressional choice. Where is the architecture compelling -- save for the finale which is the only hole of note I can see there. Tough. No doubt. Worthy of architectural interest? Hardly.

Can you explain your Pinehurst #2 statement -- "land overrated - course less so." Who ever said the land was "overrated?"

Thanks ...

Have not played either WFE, or Fenway although I have heard good things about it. My ex-wife worked at an investment bank in Greenwich CT, so when we got divorced in 1997, my access to many of these courses through her co-workers was cut off.

I could just as easily put Stanwich on the list too. Quaker Ridge is to me is an interesting comparison to a course nearby my current home, Belmont Country Club insofar as it sits in the Shadow of other better known courses in the area, but certainly holds it's own. I have a feeling Sleepy Hollow would best all those courses, but I have only walked around it before the latest renovation... although my interest was mainly in trying to spot Bill Murray on the property, not the finer points of each hole.

re: Pinehurst #2: All that 'sandhills of the Carolinas' stuff. Yeah it's good for building a course course on, but I'd hardly say it's a spectacular piece of property. In fact, if you were presented with a choice between the piece of land where #2 is versus #8 these days, I'd think 9 out of 10 designers would pick #8 to build a course.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2010, 01:08:12 PM by Anthony Butler »
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Anthony Butler

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #235 on: January 03, 2010, 12:47:54 PM »
Anthony,

The Shattuck? Really?

Yes. Really. I guess there's a bunch of courses I could have put there... but The Shattuck is definitely the most unique and hardest of these courses.

Even though it's only in good condition for about 3 weeks of the year. Although with 'climate change' it seems that period is getting longer. It was spectacular during October this year and has the advantage of being only 8 miles from the in-laws' front door.
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Sean Leary

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #236 on: January 03, 2010, 12:50:24 PM »
Anthony,

The Shattuck? Really?

Yes. Really. I guess there's a bunch of courses I could have put there... but The Shattuck is definitely the most unique and hardest of these courses.

Even though it's only in good condition for about 3 weeks of the year. Although with 'climate change' it seems that period is getting longer. It was spectacular during October this year and has the advantage of being only 8 miles from the in-laws' front door.

Unique from the other courses on your list for sure    ;)

Anthony Butler

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #237 on: January 03, 2010, 01:12:34 PM »
Anthony,

The Shattuck? Really?

Yes. Really. I guess there's a bunch of courses I could have put there... but The Shattuck is definitely the most unique and hardest of these courses.

Even though it's only in good condition for about 3 weeks of the year. Although with 'climate change' it seems that period is getting longer. It was spectacular during October this year and has the advantage of being only 8 miles from the in-laws' front door.

Unique from the other courses on your list for sure    ;)

I meant unique from the other courses I could have listed at #25. But The Shattuck is still harder than at least 10 courses on my list. If the green complexes were the average speed and condition of the other 24, it would be just behind Pine Valley and Oakmont.

That said, I'm nothing if not a contrarian.
Next!

Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #238 on: January 03, 2010, 01:13:19 PM »
Anthony:

The genuis of #2 is that the land is NOT the story. It's the manner by which the angles provided can determine greatly your success.

#2 doesn't provide the scenic thrills but succeeds INSPITE of that -- provided -- it plays firm and fast and the width of the fairways is not compromised by US Open requirements.

Your comments initiall were the land at #2 is "overrated" -- you need to tell me who actually says it's that good to start.

Still curious on your take on Congressional.

Do agree that Sleepy Hollow is a course you should play -- ditto Fenway and WF/E.


Anthony Butler

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #239 on: January 03, 2010, 01:33:54 PM »
Anthony:

The genuis of #2 is that the land is NOT the story. It's the manner by which the angles provided can determine greatly your success.

#2 doesn't provide the scenic thrills but succeeds INSPITE of that -- provided -- it plays firm and fast and the width of the fairways is not compromised by US Open requirements.

I think we are in agreement on this. If you're approaching from certain angles, no matter how good a shot you hit the green will reject it.

The greens are certainly unique. I liken it to putting on top of the hood of VW Beetle... everything seems to fall away from you. It's really hard to pick up the internal contours.

For the style of the course, I think Congressional has a lot of variety. And the water hazards really affect the play on each hole. I have a fond spot for Congressional because the funniest thing happened to me during the US Open in '97.

While perusing the parking options along River Rd before the first round (every resident other than the Shrivers had turned their front yards into parking lots for the week) I noted the south side of the street was charging $5 more than the north side. When I asked the Shriver's neighbor why that was so, he repled "... well if you lived around here, you'd know this side of the street is far more desirable."

« Last Edit: January 03, 2010, 04:54:23 PM by Anthony Butler »
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Scott Warren

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #240 on: January 03, 2010, 01:39:17 PM »
24. Carnoustie (Forget a ball, I almost lost a club in the rough in June '99.

;D

Sean Leary

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #241 on: January 03, 2010, 01:55:42 PM »
Anthony,

The Shattuck? Really?

Yes. Really. I guess there's a bunch of courses I could have put there... but The Shattuck is definitely the most unique and hardest of these courses.

Even though it's only in good condition for about 3 weeks of the year. Although with 'climate change' it seems that period is getting longer. It was spectacular during October this year and has the advantage of being only 8 miles from the in-laws' front door.

Unique from the other courses on your list for sure    ;)

I meant unique from the other courses I could have listed at #25. But The Shattuck is still harder than at least 10 courses on my list. If the green complexes were the average speed and condition of the other 24, it would be just behind Pine Valley and Oakmont.

That said, I'm nothing if not a contrarian.

I think The Shattuck is harder than PV myself.  I just don't think its very good... :)

Richard Choi

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #242 on: January 03, 2010, 02:06:54 PM »
If Old Macdonald does not bump one of those three off your list, I'll be pissed.

LOL! Looks like we have the conversation topic #1 for the Old Mac opening night dinner at Bandon.

Sandy Smith

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #243 on: January 03, 2010, 02:40:01 PM »
 PV is the best but there is nothing like playing Amen Corner or walking up 18 at TOC.

Pine Valley
ANGC
TOC
CPC
Ballybunion
Royal County Down
Pebble Beach
Spyglass Hill
Pasatiempo
Atlantic City CC
Bandon Dunes
Pacific Dunes
Capilano
Western Gails
Turnberry
Prestwick
Royal Lytham
Royal Birkdale
Stadium Course Sawgrass
North Berwick
National GC Toronto
Royal Troon
Minikada
Royal Colwood
Bandon Trails
« Last Edit: October 25, 2014, 03:46:58 PM by Sandy Smith »
Firm greens, firmer fairways.

Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #244 on: January 03, 2010, 03:12:41 PM »
Anthony:

I don't doubt Congressional can be a tough test -- but where is the compelling architecture ?

It's more of the RTJ / post Rees set-up that provides for narrow driving down the same chute of holes followed by greens that are of the same type and configuration.

How do you place it ahead of the likes of Pinehurst #2, Oakmont and Muirfield ?

Puzzling indeed.

Anthony Butler

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #245 on: January 03, 2010, 05:01:06 PM »
Anthony:

I don't doubt Congressional can be a tough test -- but where is the compelling architecture ?

It's more of the RTJ / post Rees set-up that provides for narrow driving down the same chute of holes followed by greens that are of the same type and configuration.

How do you place it ahead of the likes of Pinehurst #2, Oakmont and Muirfield ?

Puzzling indeed.


On reflection, Congressional and Quaker Ridge should be moved down a few spots... still, I think it has at least 7-8 really strong holes. I would love to think I could push it down the list even further, because that would mean I get to play some really good courses.
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Tim Bert

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #246 on: January 03, 2010, 05:11:21 PM »
If Old Macdonald does not bump one of those three off your list, I'll be pissed.

LOL! Looks like we have the conversation topic #1 for the Old Mac opening night dinner at Bandon.

You are eating dinner?!?  We are planning to play our third round.

Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #247 on: January 03, 2010, 05:44:57 PM »
Anthony:

Thanks -- but frankly Congressional is more than a few spots away when held against the likes of Pinehurst #2, Oakmont and Muirfield. It's OK to back pedal -- I did it with Mauna Kea and have it replaced by a better choice with the Lower at WR.

On a Doak scale Congressional is likely no more than a 6-7 for me -- Pinehurst #2, Oakmont and Muirfield are all in the 9-10 categories depending upon personal preferences.

On the flip side -- hats off to you on the selection of WF/W. Gets little love from the group here -- likely because of all the butt kickings it provides.




Anthony Butler

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Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #248 on: January 03, 2010, 10:53:33 PM »
Anthony:
On a Doak scale Congressional is likely no more than a 6-7 for me -- Pinehurst #2, Oakmont and Muirfield are all in the 9-10 categories depending upon personal preferences.


Tom Doak's analysis of golf courses is similar to Bill Simmons' writing on sports... incredibly well-informed,  insightful and occasionally amusing. That said, they're both trying to provide shock value, so I don't agree with everything either of them said.

I lost my photocopy of Doak's book a couple of moves ago, but it struck me that, beyond the 7-8 courses everyone agrees on (CPC, PV, etc...) the courses he rates most highly are mostly famous for their greens + surroundings.
« Last Edit: January 03, 2010, 11:03:33 PM by Anthony Butler »
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Matt_Ward

Re: Whip it Out: Post your Top 25 Courses Played
« Reply #249 on: January 04, 2010, 07:49:22 PM »
Anthony:

No disrespect-- but you have not really explained how Congressional can be ahead of the likes of Pinehurst #2, Oakmont and Muirfueld.

I don't doubt Congressional can be hard for the Joe Sixpacks of the world -- but Tiger and company torched theplace at last year's AT&T event.

Help me out with this one -- OK ?

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