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George_Bahto

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #25 on: August 20, 2010, 05:00:19 PM »
Jerry - there is an incredible amount of movement on both the front and rear sections of the green - especially on the front - Tom was anticipating using the front as a pinnable option.

and since there is not the typical long side bunkering more features in the green makes a lot of sense.

I was expecting a lot of questions about the lack of side bunkering - there is a lot of natural problems there anyhow and besides, this was never meant to be a copy-cat version of any Biarritz that has been built.

It plays just fine. It could have used another 20- or more yards but the greens was in a natural spot and there is no room to go back with the tee.
If a player insists on playing his maximum power on his tee-shot, it is not the architect's intention to allow him an overly wide target to hit to but rather should be allowed this privilege of maximum power except under conditions of exceptional skill.
   Wethered & Simpson

DMoriarty

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #26 on: August 20, 2010, 05:31:10 PM »
George it wouldn't surprise me if the swale was supposed to be something like the valley of sin, at least strategically, this would lend credence to the view that the green was behind the swale, not in front of it.  I love the idea of the feature forcing the decision of the golfer to either carry it all or run it all the way through.  No wishy washy hitting it just short and hoping it runs on.  Either execute the carry or execute the run-up, but don't be in between.

As for OM's 8th,  it is a lot of fun to play, and the ball will definitely roll through the swale.  I managed to to hit a nifty mid-iron that released through the swale to about 10 ft.  Perhaps the only highlight of my first round there. 
Golf history can be quite interesting if you just let your favorite legends go and allow the truth to take you where it will.
--Tom MacWood (1958-2012)

Bill Brightly

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #27 on: August 20, 2010, 06:20:27 PM »


If you only had the chance to play a particular barritz green once, then yes I would preferr to have the pin in the back as it's fun to run a shot through the swale. However, if you have the chance to play one multiple times (IE you're a member or playing Old Macdonald a bunch on a trip to Bandon) I wouldn't want to constantly play to a back pin. Again the variety in strategy from pin-to-pin is the biggest reason to mow the front section of a biarrtz green.  

Pat,

Pin variety is NOT the reason to maintain the front section as putting surface. It's Ok if you and Ross thinks it's cool to throw a pin there once in a while, especially when you throw it near the swale. That makes for a fun par 3 shot, but it is not a Biarritz hole on that day.

The reason to maintain it as green is to make it firm and fast and make the swale truly exciting: balls hit well enough to go 225-235 can run up through the swale, but also back down if not hit hard enough. It is also FAR harder to hit the ball straight enough from 225+ and avoid the side bunkers.

With modern irrigation methods and a fairway height approach AND SWALE, it is just another long par 3 that requires a well hit 5 wood or 3 wood.  There must be 10,000 such holes in the US. Trust me, I played ours for 30 years that way. We have now deepened the swale,  restored the front bunkers and mow the front section as putting surface. It is a far more exciting hole. It is the hole that Macdonald conceived and with the pin back, it is where Macdonald wanted the hole to be cut..

When the pin is up front it is at least a 1/2 shot easier. In the past 3 years I've played it up front about 30 times (mostly Tuesday afternoons :) ) and I have NEVER hit my 180-190 shot too far into the swale and I have never seen it done. The reality is that VERY few shots to par 3's go too long. With a front pin, FAR fewer go wide, and I would guess the green is hit about 4 times more often when the front pin is used. As I said, I feel this was a Macdonald original design and a front pin defeats the design.

I have spent the last 6 years studying Biarritz holes and that study is what led me to stumble across GCA.com. I think I know a fair amount about the hole. And if you noticed, the guy who knows the most: George Bahto, did NOT say it is OK to put the pin up front, did he? :)
« Last Edit: August 20, 2010, 06:30:14 PM by Bill Brightly »

Sean_A

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #28 on: August 20, 2010, 07:00:08 PM »


If you only had the chance to play a particular barritz green once, then yes I would preferr to have the pin in the back as it's fun to run a shot through the swale. However, if you have the chance to play one multiple times (IE you're a member or playing Old Macdonald a bunch on a trip to Bandon) I wouldn't want to constantly play to a back pin. Again the variety in strategy from pin-to-pin is the biggest reason to mow the front section of a biarrtz green.  

Pat,

Pin variety is NOT the reason to maintain the front section as putting surface. It's Ok if you and Ross thinks it's cool to throw a pin there once in a while, especially when you throw it near the swale. That makes for a fun par 3 shot, but it is not a Biarritz hole on that day.

The reason to maintain it as green is to make it firm and fast and make the swale truly exciting: balls hit well enough to go 225-235 can run up through the swale, but also back down if not hit hard enough. It is also FAR harder to hit the ball straight enough from 225+ and avoid the side bunkers.

With modern irrigation methods and a fairway height approach AND SWALE, it is just another long par 3 that requires a well hit 5 wood or 3 wood.  There must be 10,000 such holes in the US. Trust me, I played ours for 30 years that way. We have now deepened the swale,  restored the front bunkers and mow the front section as putting surface. It is a far more exciting hole. It is the hole that Macdonald conceived and with the pin back, it is where Macdonald wanted the hole to be cut..

When the pin is up front it is at least a 1/2 shot easier. In the past 3 years I've played it up front about 30 times (mostly Tuesday afternoons :) ) and I have NEVER hit my 180-190 shot too far into the swale and I have never seen it done. The reality is that VERY few shots to par 3's go too long. With a front pin, FAR fewer go wide, and I would guess the green is hit about 4 times more often when the front pin is used. As I said, I feel this was a Macdonald original design and a front pin defeats the design.

I have spent the last 6 years studying Biarritz holes and that study is what led me to stumble across GCA.com. I think I know a fair amount about the hole. And if you noticed, the guy who knows the most: George Bahto, did NOT say it is OK to put the pin up front, did he? :)

Bill

If you are so concerned about CBM originality than wouldn't it be prudent to raise the green grasss height on those Bs which didn't have the front part of the complex cut as green originally?  I know CBM was very concerned about turf quality and its playing chractersitics, so maybe there is a reason for Bs to have green before the dip and some not to.  IMO if there is green which is pinnable, then it is not only fair game to do so, but probably wise as well.

Ciao
New plays planned for 2024: Fraserburgh, Hankley Common, Ashridge, Gog Magog Old & Cruden Bay St Olaf

Jud_T

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #29 on: August 20, 2010, 07:31:00 PM »
Sean, it may be fair game but not necessarily wise.
Golf is a game. We play it. Somewhere along the way we took the fun out of it and charged a premium to be punished.- - Ron Sirak

Bill Brightly

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #30 on: August 20, 2010, 07:34:47 PM »
Sean.

Not ONE of the original Biarritz holes had the front section as green height, OK? Not ONE. They were built from 1910 to 1929. CBM, Raynor and Banks designed them at a time when players could not carry the ball 220+ in the air to the green. Rather, they envisioned a low running shot that would have to land on the front section, be straight enough to avoid the bunkers left and right of the approach, then run through the swale with enough force to go down and up the swale. (On my course, Banks placed his in a GREAT spot where long is dead, the ball would run 50 yards down a hill, a FAR more likley outcome if you are hitting driver or 3 wood.  I now have to hit a faded driver, if I catch it straight it is a double bogey... my other option is a low, hooked 3 wood.)

I also believe that the turf of the approaches was HARD almost all summer when these holes were built. The balls would bound sharply after landing. Our old pro (Charles Mayo, a fine Scottish golfer) gave lessons on the "Biarritz Shot" and taught our members how to hit it low and running to the pin.

I know this may not seem like a big deal to guys from the UK and other places with links golf...but as someone who plays 99% of my golf on aerial-only parkland courses...I LOVE the fact that clubs now are restoring the CONDITION of one of Macdonald's classic inventions. We at least have ONE hole where the ground game is a possibility!

So if some guys want to hit a 4 iron to this hole and hope it stays short of the swale...rather than pull out a 3 wood or driver and challenge the swale, so be it. That is not very exciting in my book!

I can tell you at my club the hole plays no different for the flat bellies: They throw it up in the air, even from the back tees at 250. It is only the older guys who cant reach the back tier who have discovered the excitement of the swale. The front pin is just so lame. I agree that Old Macdonald's would be a slight exception, that front section has a lot of movement and it would be a fine mid-range par 3 if the green ended at the swale. But then it would NOT be a Biarritz, would it? And Macdonald would yawn...
« Last Edit: August 20, 2010, 07:54:20 PM by Bill Brightly »

Tiger_Bernhardt

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #31 on: August 20, 2010, 09:18:00 PM »
I do not think the majority of these greens only have that 60% factor. I am more used to a 80 to 85% pinable area other than nonlegal locations.

George_Bahto

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #32 on: August 20, 2010, 09:18:52 PM »
In Macdonald's thinking he was using Biarritz as a test for you longest shot. A pin in the front section would be the same test as an Redan hole - a long-Iron test of about 180 - 190 yards or so (in the day)
If a player insists on playing his maximum power on his tee-shot, it is not the architect's intention to allow him an overly wide target to hit to but rather should be allowed this privilege of maximum power except under conditions of exceptional skill.
   Wethered & Simpson

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #33 on: August 21, 2010, 02:44:02 AM »
Sean.

Not ONE of the original Biarritz holes had the front section as green height, OK? Not ONE. They were built from 1910 to 1929. CBM, Raynor and Banks designed them at a time when players could not carry the ball 220+ in the air to the green. Rather, they envisioned a low running shot that would have to land on the front section, be straight enough to avoid the bunkers left and right of the approach, then run through the swale with enough force to go down and up the swale. (On my course, Banks placed his in a GREAT spot where long is dead, the ball would run 50 yards down a hill, a FAR more likley outcome if you are hitting driver or 3 wood.  I now have to hit a faded driver, if I catch it straight it is a double bogey... my other option is a low, hooked 3 wood.)

I also believe that the turf of the approaches was HARD almost all summer when these holes were built. The balls would bound sharply after landing. Our old pro (Charles Mayo, a fine Scottish golfer) gave lessons on the "Biarritz Shot" and taught our members how to hit it low and running to the pin.

I know this may not seem like a big deal to guys from the UK and other places with links golf...but as someone who plays 99% of my golf on aerial-only parkland courses...I LOVE the fact that clubs now are restoring the CONDITION of one of Macdonald's classic inventions. We at least have ONE hole where the ground game is a possibility!

So if some guys want to hit a 4 iron to this hole and hope it stays short of the swale...rather than pull out a 3 wood or driver and challenge the swale, so be it. That is not very exciting in my book!

I can tell you at my club the hole plays no different for the flat bellies: They throw it up in the air, even from the back tees at 250. It is only the older guys who cant reach the back tier who have discovered the excitement of the swale. The front pin is just so lame. I agree that Old Macdonald's would be a slight exception, that front section has a lot of movement and it would be a fine mid-range par 3 if the green ended at the swale. But then it would NOT be a Biarritz, would it? And Macdonald would yawn...

Maybe you are correct about the ground action being rather ho hum for UK golf.  I have only seen one proper B at Yeamans and it doesn't do a lot for me so perhaps I not such a big fan of the concept as I am of a hole being dynamic.  To me, creating at dynamic hole is the best reason for large greens.  All the other stuff is just cream on the pie. 

So far as creating firm turf on a non-green surface, its a whole different ball game of an issue that as I get more into architecture the more I am convinced this is as important as any single design concept. 

Ciao
New plays planned for 2024: Fraserburgh, Hankley Common, Ashridge, Gog Magog Old & Cruden Bay St Olaf

Jim Nugent

Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #34 on: August 21, 2010, 04:36:39 AM »
In Macdonald's thinking he was using Biarritz as a test for you longest shot.

To reproduce that with today's distances, the hole would have to stretch to 260-280 or maybe more.   Do any Biarritz holes have back tees that require driver/3 wood for long-ball hitters?   

Niall C

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #35 on: August 21, 2010, 10:23:56 AM »
I have not played Biarritz hole so maybe this is a silly question.  Although I have played North Berwick and while playing Silloth with Niall Carlton he mentioned that maybe the 4th holes green had Biarritz characteristics. 

My question is this; Why is there such a problem with the front half being pinned, assuming it is maintained as green?

People mention the thrill of waiting to see the ball come through the hollow of the tee shot but would that not apply for a putt that came from back to front.  Also assuming you are running the ball up to the green from the tee is there not the thrill of waiting to see if the ball will stop before going through the swale, if the flag is on the front portion?


Ross

Its not just the green complex on the 4th at Silloth but the entire (original) hole has characteristics of a Biarritz hole from how it was described in another Biarritz thread a few months back. Not sure when the hole was created but I think it likely it was pre NGLA. The original tee is still there although not maintained as a tee. I'm due down in Silloth in the next couple of weeks and will take some photos for posting.

For what its worth the front part of the green is used for hole positions and is just as hard as a back position although it does present a slightly different proposition.

Niall 

Jud_T

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #36 on: August 21, 2010, 10:25:55 AM »
I think George may be onto something with his Valley of Sin line of reasoning....
Golf is a game. We play it. Somewhere along the way we took the fun out of it and charged a premium to be punished.- - Ron Sirak

Bill Brightly

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #37 on: August 21, 2010, 05:06:14 PM »
In Macdonald's thinking he was using Biarritz as a test for you longest shot.

To reproduce that with today's distances, the hole would have to stretch to 260-280 or maybe more.   Do any Biarritz holes have back tees that require driver/3 wood for long-ball hitters?    
Hackensack's can stretch to 265.

Read between the lines of George Bahto's quotes here...you KNOW he wished OM's was that long...


Sean

It is all about re-creating the condition!
« Last Edit: August 21, 2010, 05:09:11 PM by Bill Brightly »

Sean_A

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #38 on: August 21, 2010, 05:42:31 PM »
In Macdonald's thinking he was using Biarritz as a test for you longest shot.

To reproduce that with today's distances, the hole would have to stretch to 260-280 or maybe more.   Do any Biarritz holes have back tees that require driver/3 wood for long-ball hitters?    
Hackensack's can stretch to 265.

Read between the lines of George Bahto's quotes here...you KNOW he wished OM's was that long...


Sean

It is all about re-creating the condition!

Bill

Try as we might, we shall never recreate conditions of the 1920s and 30s.  For better and worse, the game moves on, but in all honesty, I don't mind design moving toward more varied shot requirements.  That is one hallmark of good architecture.

Ciao
New plays planned for 2024: Fraserburgh, Hankley Common, Ashridge, Gog Magog Old & Cruden Bay St Olaf

DMoriarty

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #39 on: August 21, 2010, 05:59:19 PM »
I too am nowhere near convinced that the Biarritz concept came from the Chasm Hole at Biarritz.  Especially since there is some evidence that CBM saw North Berwick's Gate before he built Piping Rock, when it may have had two plateaux, but only one cut as green before he built Piping Rock.  Unfortunately, there is no photo of the hole in the wonderful British Golf Links, but Hutchinson provides a quick description whic includes "The sixteenth hole is on a lesser plateau..."  In an interesting twist, it could be that CBM's Biarritz's provided the impetus for North Berwick to create the double plateaux green!

I think it a reasonable possibility that CBM made the "template" hole up himself.  

Here is an old quote from Naccers quoting the infamous H Wigham (though it isn't clear what is a quote and what is Naccers) having seen the hole in person:

"The Chasm Hole itself was--as described by one H. Wigham--as a strong running punch shot into the wind which required you to hit the front and run it on from there. It was the more sensible play, albeit a chance that you would have to hit through the huge swale while avoiding the hogsback nature of the first half of the green which could funnel you into the deep bunkers on both sides. If you tried to carry the deep swale--and failed, you would have an even tougher play from with-in the swale itself."

Ciao

Sean,

Since this post, I've been wondering . . .  Just what or who is this "Naccers" with this insightful commentary on Whigham and the Chasm hole??  A book? A Magazine? An Author? A website?  An obscure European philosopher? Finally it hit me --Naccers as all this and much much more.  Stupid me.  

Once I figured it out, I recognize the Whigham passage to which Naccers refers.  (It actually provoked a nasty response from Travis about what he thought was the improper use of the term "push shot," but that may have said more about his bitterness at the time than anything about Whigham or the "push.")    Naccers' description of the hole seems sound, except where he calls it a "Chasm Hole" (as he is wont to do,) Whigham referred to "a Biarritz."   I don't think Whigham or CBM ever referred to the Biarritz green as a "Chasm Hole," which is one reason why I doubt that this was the hole at Biarritz was the one that influenced them.  To put it another way, "the Chasm" may have only been one of the holes at Biarritz which influenced them, but not the one with swale short of the green.)   Here is the 1913 passage from Whigham:

"There is a Biarritz hole of about 220 yards which is new to this country and is one of the best one-shot holes in existence. There is a hog's back extending to within thirty yards of the green and a dip between the hog's back and the green. Under normal conditions the hole has to be played with what is now known as the push shot, a low ball with plenty of run, which will land short of the dip and run through it on to the green. A drive with a longer carry is apt to land in the dip and stay there. But the push shot must be very straight, otherwise it will land on one side or the other of the hog's back and break off into a bunker. This is the ninth hole at Piping Rock."

Earlier works by Macdonald describe a Biarritz hole similarly, and they DO NOT MENTION A CHASM.  

As for the 16th at North Berwick,  I thought earlier discussions had concluded that it was built sometime after CBM came up with his Biarritz concept.   Your theory about the 16th possibly being based upon CBM's version would be an interesting and ironic twist, but it seems more likely that both the 16th at NB and CBM's Biarritz were based on the same hole at Biarritz. Weren't the Dunns active at to both North Berwick and Biarritz?  Also, I believe that the great French professional from Biarritz, Arnaud Massey, actually played out of North Berwick and was a longtime assistant to Ben Sayers.  Here they are pictured together.

« Last Edit: August 21, 2010, 06:08:03 PM by DMoriarty »
Golf history can be quite interesting if you just let your favorite legends go and allow the truth to take you where it will.
--Tom MacWood (1958-2012)

Bob_Huntley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #40 on: August 21, 2010, 06:20:56 PM »
I've never seen a front pin on a golden age Biarritz, and rightly so IMHO.  However, I have yet to play Old Mac, so I'll reserve judgement on that interpretation....

Jud,

Then you never played Raynor's 4th at MPCC Dunes; there was a front pin placement from day one in 1925.

Bob

Jud_T

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #41 on: August 21, 2010, 06:54:43 PM »
Bob,

I haven't.  It's on the list.....
Golf is a game. We play it. Somewhere along the way we took the fun out of it and charged a premium to be punished.- - Ron Sirak

David Egan

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #42 on: August 21, 2010, 06:59:18 PM »
I've never seen a front pin on a golden age Biarritz, and rightly so IMHO.  However, I have yet to play Old Mac, so I'll reserve judgement on that interpretation....

I've seen it on the 6th at Shoreacres from time to time.

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #43 on: August 21, 2010, 06:59:33 PM »
I too am nowhere near convinced that the Biarritz concept came from the Chasm Hole at Biarritz.  Especially since there is some evidence that CBM saw North Berwick's Gate before he built Piping Rock, when it may have had two plateaux, but only one cut as green before he built Piping Rock.  Unfortunately, there is no photo of the hole in the wonderful British Golf Links, but Hutchinson provides a quick description whic includes "The sixteenth hole is on a lesser plateau..."  In an interesting twist, it could be that CBM's Biarritz's provided the impetus for North Berwick to create the double plateaux green!

I think it a reasonable possibility that CBM made the "template" hole up himself.  

Here is an old quote from Naccers quoting the infamous H Wigham (though it isn't clear what is a quote and what is Naccers) having seen the hole in person:

"The Chasm Hole itself was--as described by one H. Wigham--as a strong running punch shot into the wind which required you to hit the front and run it on from there. It was the more sensible play, albeit a chance that you would have to hit through the huge swale while avoiding the hogsback nature of the first half of the green which could funnel you into the deep bunkers on both sides. If you tried to carry the deep swale--and failed, you would have an even tougher play from with-in the swale itself."

Ciao

Sean,

Since this post, I've been wondering . . .  Just what or who is this "Naccers" with this insightful commentary on Whigham and the Chasm hole??  A book? A Magazine? An Author? A website?  An obscure European philosopher? Finally it hit me --Naccers as all this and much much more.  Stupid me.  

Once I figured it out, I recognize the Whigham passage to which Naccers refers.  (It actually provoked a nasty response from Travis about what he thought was the improper use of the term "push shot," but that may have said more about his bitterness at the time than anything about Whigham or the "push.")    Naccers' description of the hole seems sound, except where he calls it a "Chasm Hole" (as he is wont to do,) Whigham referred to "a Biarritz."   I don't think Whigham or CBM ever referred to the Biarritz green as a "Chasm Hole," which is one reason why I doubt that this was the hole at Biarritz was the one that influenced them.  To put it another way, "the Chasm" may have only been one of the holes at Biarritz which influenced them, but not the one with swale short of the green.)   Here is the 1913 passage from Whigham:

"There is a Biarritz hole of about 220 yards which is new to this country and is one of the best one-shot holes in existence. There is a hog's back extending to within thirty yards of the green and a dip between the hog's back and the green. Under normal conditions the hole has to be played with what is now known as the push shot, a low ball with plenty of run, which will land short of the dip and run through it on to the green. A drive with a longer carry is apt to land in the dip and stay there. But the push shot must be very straight, otherwise it will land on one side or the other of the hog's back and break off into a bunker. This is the ninth hole at Piping Rock."

Earlier works by Macdonald describe a Biarritz hole similarly, and they DO NOT MENTION A CHASM.  

As for the 16th at North Berwick,  I thought earlier discussions had concluded that it was built sometime after CBM came up with his Biarritz concept.   Your theory about the 16th possibly being based upon CBM's version would be an interesting and ironic twist, but it seems more likely that both the 16th at NB and CBM's Biarritz were based on the same hole at Biarritz. Weren't the Dunns active at to both North Berwick and Biarritz?  Also, I believe that the great French professional from Biarritz, Arnaud Massey, actually played out of North Berwick and was a longtime assistant to Ben Sayers.  Here they are pictured together.



David

It could be the case that the double plateaux green was created after CBM's visit, but I think it entirely possible (especially reading Hutchinson's account published in 1897) that the double plateax existed with only one cut as a green when CBM saw it. It may well be that the ditch was drained and the second plateau cut as a green after CBM came up with the template (which is where I think the concept as we know it originated) as we think of the Biarritz.  Still, I would like to know more about Naccer's quote.  Do you have the exact quote of Whigham, when and where it was written?  

Ciao
New plays planned for 2024: Fraserburgh, Hankley Common, Ashridge, Gog Magog Old & Cruden Bay St Olaf

Tim Nugent

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #44 on: August 21, 2010, 07:01:29 PM »
If one is to be true to original design intent, shouldn't B's today play over 300 yds? And if so, is it still a par 3? or a short, drivable 4?

Also, what was the year when 16 @ NB was built?
Coasting is a downhill process

Jim Nugent

Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #45 on: August 21, 2010, 07:40:21 PM »
influenced them, but not the one with swale short of the green.)   Here is the 1913 passage from Whigham:

"There is a Biarritz hole of about 220 yards which is new to this country and is one of the best one-shot holes in existence. There is a hog's back extending to within thirty yards of the green and a dip between the hog's back and the green. Under normal conditions the hole has to be played with what is now known as the push shot, a low ball with plenty of run, which will land short of the dip and run through it on to the green. A drive with a longer carry is apt to land in the dip and stay there. But the push shot must be very straight, otherwise it will land on one side or the other of the hog's back and break off into a bunker. This is the ninth hole at Piping Rock."


David, real interesting quote.  I would like to know what inspired the Biarritz.  If it wasn't the chasm hole in France, why did CBM name the hole Biarritz?  While George Bahto's hunch makes sense, in that case why didn't CBM name the hole after the 18th at TOC?  Did he name any other of his templates somewhat whimsically?  Cape, redan, alps, short, long, bottle, Eden, all seem pretty straightforward. 

I thought someone posted info in the past few months that showed pretty definitively that the 16th at N. Berwick did not have a green complex with a swale in or in front of it.  i.e. the current green came after CBM designed his first Biarritz green. 

George_Bahto

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #46 on: August 21, 2010, 08:15:18 PM »
Macdonald - Scotland's Gilft - page 184 - item, #10

he explains it

12th Biarritz (Fr) - at times it was the 3rd (Chasm) w/9's reversed
If a player insists on playing his maximum power on his tee-shot, it is not the architect's intention to allow him an overly wide target to hit to but rather should be allowed this privilege of maximum power except under conditions of exceptional skill.
   Wethered & Simpson

DMoriarty

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #47 on: August 22, 2010, 01:09:17 AM »
David

It could be the case that the double plateaux green was created after CBM's visit, but I think it entirely possible (especially reading Hutchinson's account published in 1897) that the double plateax existed with only one cut as a green when CBM saw it. It may well be that the ditch was drained and the second plateau cut as a green after CBM came up with the template (which is where I think the concept as we know it originated) as we think of the Biarritz.  Still, I would like to know more about Naccer's quote.  Do you have the exact quote of Whigham, when and where it was written?  

The quote in blue above is from Whigham, from Town and Country, 1913, describing Piping Rock.   Here it is again, with my bolds:

"There is a Biarritz hole of about 220 yards which is new to this country and is one of the best one-shot holes in existence. There is a hog's back extending to within thirty yards of the green and a dip between the hog's back and the green. Under normal conditions the hole has to be played with what is now known as the push shot, a low ball with plenty of run, which will land short of the dip and run through it on to the green. A drive with a longer carry is apt to land in the dip and stay there. But the push shot must be very straight, otherwise it will land on one side or the other of the hog's back and break off into a bunker. This is the ninth hole at Piping Rock."

Here is how CBM described the hole for Outing Magazine after returning from his 1906 trip abroad:

210 yards.  Suggested by the 12th Biarritz, making sharp hog back in the middle of the course.  Stop 30 yards from the hole bunkered to the right of green and good low ground to the left of plateau green.

[Note: The version of this article in Scotland's Gift stated that the "hog back" stopped "80 yards from the hole" but this was a misprint.  The original article stated "30 yards."]

So while Whigham's description is more detailed than CBM's, the two descriptions are very similar. And neither mentions anything about a chasm or the "Chasm Hole."

There was a hole at Biarritz that I suspect might better have fit the description, but I haven't yet found a good photograph.  

________________________________

Jim Nugent,

As I said, I think it may have been a different hole at Biarritz.   I suspect I know the hole, but I am still hoping to find more information at some point.    Also, this hole often seems to have been combined with a Chasm concept (Yale for example.)

_____________________________

George,   From what I can tell they switched the hole numbers (and the course) around quite a bit at Biarritz, so while CBM's reference to the 12th might mean the 3rd with the nines reversed, I am not entirely convinced.    I'll let you know if I find anything.

By the way, is my Scotland's Gift different than yours?   In mine the hole is described on page 155 as number 15.  Weird.
« Last Edit: August 22, 2010, 01:11:32 AM by DMoriarty »
Golf history can be quite interesting if you just let your favorite legends go and allow the truth to take you where it will.
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Sean_A

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Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #48 on: August 22, 2010, 03:33:54 AM »
David

It could be the case that the double plateaux green was created after CBM's visit, but I think it entirely possible (especially reading Hutchinson's account published in 1897) that the double plateax existed with only one cut as a green when CBM saw it. It may well be that the ditch was drained and the second plateau cut as a green after CBM came up with the template (which is where I think the concept as we know it originated) as we think of the Biarritz.  Still, I would like to know more about Naccer's quote.  Do you have the exact quote of Whigham, when and where it was written?  

The quote in blue above is from Whigham, from Town and Country, 1913, describing Piping Rock.   Here it is again, with my bolds:

"There is a Biarritz hole of about 220 yards which is new to this country and is one of the best one-shot holes in existence. There is a hog's back extending to within thirty yards of the green and a dip between the hog's back and the green. Under normal conditions the hole has to be played with what is now known as the push shot, a low ball with plenty of run, which will land short of the dip and run through it on to the green. A drive with a longer carry is apt to land in the dip and stay there. But the push shot must be very straight, otherwise it will land on one side or the other of the hog's back and break off into a bunker. This is the ninth hole at Piping Rock."

Here is how CBM described the hole for Outing Magazine after returning from his 1906 trip abroad:

210 yards.  Suggested by the 12th Biarritz, making sharp hog back in the middle of the course.  Stop 30 yards from the hole bunkered to the right of green and good low ground to the left of plateau green.

[Note: The version of this article in Scotland's Gift stated that the "hog back" stopped "80 yards from the hole" but this was a misprint.  The original article stated "30 yards."]

So while Whigham's description is more detailed than CBM's, the two descriptions are very similar. And neither mentions anything about a chasm or the "Chasm Hole."

There was a hole at Biarritz that I suspect might better have fit the description, but I haven't yet found a good photograph.  

________________________________

Jim Nugent,

As I said, I think it may have been a different hole at Biarritz.   I suspect I know the hole, but I am still hoping to find more information at some point.    Also, this hole often seems to have been combined with a Chasm concept (Yale for example.)

_____________________________

George,   From what I can tell they switched the hole numbers (and the course) around quite a bit at Biarritz, so while CBM's reference to the 12th might mean the 3rd with the nines reversed, I am not entirely convinced.    I'll let you know if I find anything.

By the way, is my Scotland's Gift different than yours?   In mine the hole is described on page 155 as number 15.  Weird.

David

Thank you!  That clears up things as I thought Naccers implied that Whigham was describing the Chasm Hole AT Biarritz.  So we are no closer to knowing what that hole was like.

Tim

As I said earlier, NB's 16th could very well have had two plateaux when CBM saw the course, but only one cut as green.  Read Hutchinson's take on the hole in British Golf Links.  My impression is that one plateau may have been more an alps like that was taller than the green.  When the two plateaux were made into "one" green maybe the plateaux were made roughly the same height.

Ciao
New plays planned for 2024: Fraserburgh, Hankley Common, Ashridge, Gog Magog Old & Cruden Bay St Olaf

Jim Nugent

Re: Biarritz Question
« Reply #49 on: August 22, 2010, 10:59:49 AM »
David and George: is there any question about which course inspired CBM then?  Sounds like the Biarritz.  Only question is, which hole. 

Whoever designed the Biarritz course probably saw TOC.  So he probaby knew the Valley of Sin as well.  If he put a swale before one of his greens, maybe the Valley inspired him. 

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