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Pete_Pittock

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Would Fazios and Jones be preeminent? Where would the careers be of people in the Dye architect family tree?

Tom_Doak

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I'm not sure I would ever have gotten interested in golf architecture to begin with, if I hadn't seen Harbour Town when I was 10 or 11 years old, and they'd had that little guide book with its descriptions of the golf holes.  That was the hook for me.  It's possible it could have come later, but it's equally possible I would have been on to something else  ???


For sure, it would be a different world if I'd been brought up to believe that the way to build courses was like Mr. Jones instead of like Mr. Dye.

Pete_Pittock

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Which firm would likely have been given the land at TPC Sawgrass?

Ally Mcintosh

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Tom,


I find it hard to believe that it was just Harbor Town that did it for you. I reckon GCA is in the bones. Some people just love golf courses.


It definitely takes something very strong for an architect to break away from their mentorís way of thinking. It seems that you live with the Dyeís methodology and concepts but went 180 degrees to their aesthetic.


Iím not sure I know of any architect that hasnít followed their first employerís principles in some way. If one grew up with RTJ or Nicklaus, one tends to show RTJ or Nicklaus characteristics.


Iím sure there are examples of full about turns - others would know better.

Matthew Rose

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Which firm would likely have been given the land at TPC Sawgrass?

My money probably would have been on Nicklaus.
American-Australian. Trackman Course Guy. Fatalistic sports fan. Drummer. Bass player. Father. Cat lover.

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Which firm would likely have been given the land at TPC Sawgrass?

My money probably would have been on Nicklaus.


I don't think you guys understand how different history would be.


Do you think Jack Nicklaus learned about golf course architecture from Desmond Muirhead?  Do you think he was born knowing about it?  His career was influenced by Mr Dye almost as much as mine.  If he had worked with George Cobb to build Harbour Town, do you think that would have kickstarted Jack's design career?


The TPC at Sawgrass was a byproduct of The success of Harbour Town.  That course is the reason Commissioner Beman wanted Mr Dye - and it might not be a stretch to say that's the reason he wanted to build a golf course in the first place.


Plus, if anyone else had tried to build on that site, they might still be out there, stuck in the swamp.  The only way I would have had any chance of getting something done there is because I learned from Pete.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2020, 06:35:26 AM by Tom_Doak »

Anthony_Nysse

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Which firm would likely have been given the land at TPC Sawgrass?

My money probably would have been on Nicklaus.



  I would agree with TD. You never hear Jack talk about DM, even though they built Muirfield together. He talks about Pete. Im not sure that there is any one designer in history with a greater influence & a larger number of current architects that he left an impression upon.


  In regardless to TPC & I think of Old Marsh, too. Pete didn't always have the greatest sites to construct his courses on, but his "outside the box" thinking & his ability to mold people, mold the sites & move water are all world. He took on nearly any & all sites & creates some really special courses.

I don't think you guys understand how different history would be.


Do you think Jack Nicklaus learned about golf course architecture from Desmond Muirhead?  Do you think he was born knowing about it?  His career was influenced by Mr Dye almost as much as mine.  If he had wormed with George Cobb to build Harbour Town, do you think that would have kickstarted Jack's design career?


The TPC at Sawgrass was a byproduct of The success of Harbour Town.  That course is the reason Commissioner Beman wanted Mr Dye - and it might not be a stretch to say that's the reason he wanted to build a golf course in the first place.


Plus, if anyone else had tried to build on that site, they might still be out there, stuck in the swamp.  The only way I would have had any chance of getting something done there is because I learned from Pete.
Anthony J. Nysse
Director of Golf Courses & Grounds
Apogee Club
Hobe Sound, FL

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1

Iím sure there are examples of full about turns - others would know better.


How about Pete Dye and Bill Diddel?  That's one of the reasons Mr Dye encouraged me to find a style of my own.


The only thing I ever remember him saying about Mr Diddel directly was that he admired his work and particularly his refusal to put in fairway irrigation on any of his courses - presumably, to keep down the green fees.  Pete told Mr Diddel he would do the same, and Mr Diddel told him not to do that, or he would starve!  Mr Diddel could stick to his principles because his career was winding down, but he knew the times were changing.

Jeff_Brauer

  • Karma: +0/-0

TD,


OT for sure, at least partly, but back in the 70's when I first started there was a Chicago irrigation designer (Scotty something, I forget now, at least for the moment) who was in his 60-70's at the time, and refused to do anything other than single row down the center of the fw, long after everyone else had gone to double row. (which seems quaint now)  Nothing we said would get him to change his long held ways in the twilight of his career.


Killian and Nugent designed huge tees for Forest Preserve National (now George Dunne) The first tee(s) were wider than long, following the topo.  Dick said it was the first time he ever saw triple row on the tees and single row on the fw.  It was, typical of Dick, a big brawny course but the fairways were brought in very narrow.


So, a Bill Diddle story one row upped. :D


As to your style differences with Pete, I have always thought that what you took away from him was if everyone is doing X, find something new to do, because you won't get famous doing another version of the same thing.  With him it was RTJ curves, and Bill Coore it was following early American principles, while yours (but you tell us) minimalism to counter the massive earthmoving projects that had Dye had become known for (and others.)
Jeff Brauer, ASGCA Director of Outreach

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1

As to your style differences with Pete, I have always thought that what you took away from him was if everyone is doing X, find something new to do, because you won't get famous doing another version of the same thing.  With him it was RTJ curves, and Bill Coore it was following early American principles, while yours (but you tell us) minimalism to counter the massive earthmoving projects that had Dye had become known for (and others.)


Jeff:


We all have a million influences and I think it's difficult to boil it down to one or two being "the reason" we do what we do.  I had seen nearly 700 golf courses by the time I started High Pointe, and most of them were pretty good ones.


I never took Pete's story about making Harbour Town different than Palmetto Dunes to be about finding a niche in the market or a trademark of his own.  He phrased it as "golf can't keep going that direction".  Funnily enough, the course down the street from High Pointe was The Bear at Grand Traverse Resort, and that's really what set me on the path to minimalism:  I had a piece of land where I didn't need to do that, and I was trying to build "no mounds" because Jack had built so many.  Having spent a year in the U.K., I was also deeply offended that courses like The Bear and Grand Cypress were being sold in America as "Scottish style", so I tried to build a course that the Scots would recognize as more authentic.


Of course, I would not have known to do any of that if I hadn't lived in Scotland and studied many of the great early American courses, so you can argue about which of them was my inspiration, but the trigger was The Bear.  If you haven't seen me say that before, it's only because I was trying not to be directly disrespectful.


And yes, I was also smart enough to know that trying to copy Pete Dye would get me nowhere, because there was no way I would ever be as good at his style as he was.  In fact, lots of other, established designers were already trying and failing at that.  But after what he'd said to me about Harbour Town, it would not have been respectful for me to try that route, and I never really considered it.

Peter Pallotta

Yes, I was thinking along the lines that Jeff just posted: Mr Dye provided a dramatic and distinctive style for others to 'react against'. And maybe in a 'laws of physics' sort of way, the more powerful the force the stronger the opposing force. White stands out against a black background better than it does a grey one.


But also: I don't think we can measure (and I think we may underestimate) the importance of the 'story', the narrative -- both personal and collective. Mr Dye's story: a love of Pinehrust #2 and yet a ground-breaker (literally & figuratively), the trips to Scotland and Ireland and yet the 're-visioning' of those classic courses for an American 'audience'. Making the old new again, transplanting the old-world to the new-world: that 'narrative' opened a lot of eyes, and a lot of doors.


P     

Thomas Dai

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.... the insurance business in Indiana and amateur golf in general might have turned out different.
atb

Matthew Rose

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Quote
Having spent a year in the U.K., I was also deeply offended that courses like The Bear and Grand Cypress were being sold in America as "Scottish style"

I feel like a lot of courses in Wisconsin were marketed like this in the 80s and 90s, like the Fox Hills resort at Mishicot as one notorious example. Even as a kid I didn't think it made a whole lot of sense.


American-Australian. Trackman Course Guy. Fatalistic sports fan. Drummer. Bass player. Father. Cat lover.

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Quote
Having spent a year in the U.K., I was also deeply offended that courses like The Bear and Grand Cypress were being sold in America as "Scottish style"

I feel like a lot of courses in Wisconsin were marketed like this in the 80s and 90s, like the Fox Hills resort at Mishicot as one notorious example. Even as a kid I didn't think it made a whole lot of sense.


Nearly every course was marketed that way in the 80s and 90s.  When we finished Black Forest in 1991 -- 18 holes cut out of a dense forest of maples -- a couple of writers asked me if it was a Scottish style course.  I told them it was more of a German-style course. 


I had no idea that was actually true -- it turns out that most of the best-known courses in Germany are surrounded by woods.  None of them have bunkering like Black Forest, though.

archie_struthers

  • Karma: +0/-0
 8) ;D ;)




I'm looking at this differently than some. My knowledge of Pete Dye is one 18 hole round at Pine Valley. As stated my memory remains fixated on his jumping into the bunkers way way left on number six , almost completely out of play and you could see his mind just wondering why.


So, I'm looking at alternative careers for Mr Dye. Insurance didn't work so he moved on. What would he have done?
At first I thought an engineer but on second thought perhaps an archaeologist, an Indiana Jones type archaeologist. Pith hat and all 8)  that's it
« Last Edit: January 24, 2020, 08:36:11 AM by archie_struthers »

Jeff_Brauer

  • Karma: +0/-0

As to your style differences with Pete, I have always thought that what you took away from him was if everyone is doing X, find something new to do, because you won't get famous doing another version of the same thing.  With him it was RTJ curves, and Bill Coore it was following early American principles, while yours (but you tell us) minimalism to counter the massive earthmoving projects that had Dye had become known for (and others.)


Jeff:


We all have a million influences and I think it's difficult to boil it down to one or two being "the reason" we do what we do.  I had seen nearly 700 golf courses by the time I started High Pointe, and most of them were pretty good ones.


I never took Pete's story about making Harbour Town different than Palmetto Dunes to be about finding a niche in the market or a trademark of his own.  He phrased it as "golf can't keep going that direction".  Funnily enough, the course down the street from High Pointe was The Bear at Grand Traverse Resort, and that's really what set me on the path to minimalism:  I had a piece of land where I didn't need to do that, and I was trying to build "no mounds" because Jack had built so many.  Having spent a year in the U.K., I was also deeply offended that courses like The Bear and Grand Cypress were being sold in America as "Scottish style", so I tried to build a course that the Scots would recognize as more authentic.


Of course, I would not have known to do any of that if I hadn't lived in Scotland and studied many of the great early American courses, so you can argue about which of them was my inspiration, but the trigger was The Bear.  If you haven't seen me say that before, it's only because I was trying not to be directly disrespectful.


And yes, I was also smart enough to know that trying to copy Pete Dye would get me nowhere, because there was no way I would ever be as good at his style as he was.  In fact, lots of other, established designers were already trying and failing at that.  But after what he'd said to me about Harbour Town, it would not have been respectful for me to try that route, and I never really considered it.



Thanks for the long reply.  (In the voice of Paul Harvey...Ö) "And know you know the rest of the story." :)
Jeff Brauer, ASGCA Director of Outreach

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