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Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-13
« Reply #25 on: May 27, 2015, 12:24:52 PM »
But lets not be too eager for a drink and miss the superb 9th, a short 4 requiring a high degree of accuracy either off the tee or for the approach.  In the right conditions some can have a go at the green from the tee, but it may be wiser to play left and leave oneself a fairly straightforward second.  Of course, finding the plateau left side is not a given. Most will be left with the daunting shot seen below.

Sean

Was this your first time playing the course ? Who do you think is going to have a go at that green (assuming they are not playing from the forward tees) ? It's all carry over a fairly deep gully. The question surely is to go left and have a short/mid iron on the level to the green but over the gully, or drive down the right and have to hit up to the green but without the gully/bunker to get over.

Niall

Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-13
« Reply #26 on: May 27, 2015, 12:32:38 PM »
You might be right in saying the bunkers were put in for the pro's as they went in after Monty made his comments about bunkering. However given they are 352 from the back tees according to Mark's yardages, I have to wonder whether they get any use.

I saw Nicolas Colsearts hit a 3-wood over 300 yards uphill on the 3rd at Wentworth last Saturday. I'm pretty sure they will get some use even off the back tees when the pros visit.

Tom

Colsearts is one of the big hitters on tour. There are probably maybe a handful who can hit it as far ? So that means every few years when the European Tour pays a visit, half a dozen pros (assuming they all decide to hit driver) who if they can hit it that far will likely be aiming more at the green rather than hugging the right hand side of the fairway anyway, hit it 20/30 yards off-line may end up in that bunker, is that what you are saying ? I tend to think there's far more chance of a twice a year hacker shanking his 5th or 6th shot in there than of a pro finding the bunker.

Niall

Alex Miller

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-13
« Reply #27 on: May 27, 2015, 01:38:19 PM »
Niall,

Checkout Ran's tour. The quote for hole 5

"Tweaking continues at Castle Stuart. These two pot bunkers seen long right at the 360 yard mark from the tee were added after studying play for two years. Castle Stuartís firm running conditions are such that the pair are in play on downwind days."


I haven't played CS, but could see how bunkers are in play on downwind days. I rather like that as a concept: accuracy should be put on premium when distance is aided by wind.

Rich Goodale

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-13
« Reply #28 on: May 27, 2015, 01:46:04 PM »
Niall,

Checkout Ran's tour. The quote for hole 5

"Tweaking continues at Castle Stuart. These two pot bunkers seen long right at the 360 yard mark from the tee were added after studying play for two years. Castle Stuartís firm running conditions are such that the pair are in play on downwind days."


I haven't played CS, but could see how bunkers are in play on downwind days. I rather like that as a concept: accuracy should be put on premium when distance is aided by wind.

Accuracdy, yes, Alex, but prudence (i.e. lay up with your 350 yard downwind club) is better!
Life is good.

Any afterlife is unlikely and/or dodgy.

Jean-Paul Parodi

Sean_A

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-13 New
« Reply #29 on: May 27, 2015, 02:22:29 PM »
Mark & Niall

Okay, I didn't realize the bunkers were 300 yards, but I still wouldn't say they are out of play....just not something to worry much about. Regardless, I donít think the fairway is unnecessarily wide...which is your point...no?

I could never have a go at #9, but I am not the longest nor most stupid golfer in the bunch.  For me, the left side is the clear play. 

Benjamin - I think capacious flows better with Castle and better conveys the amount space on the course....which has to be CS's overall stand-out feature. 

CASTLE STUART CONT.

14 and 15 are not really to my liking.  They are far from poor holes, but each has a niggling feature which annoys.  14 has the odd looking fairway bunker whose placement is similar to a few previous holes and 15 has the S hitch somewhat like the 7th, but not as well conceived.  The short two-shotter 16th, while odd looking, is however a very good hole.  The sudden appearance of heather is surprising and welcome.  I could identify the way into the green was up the right, but a swale must be negotiated.  The fairway is absolutely massive and this is the one hole where I question the ample space left, but this is a minor quibble.


More to follow. 

Ciao
« Last Edit: April 29, 2023, 04:49:23 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2023: Clyne

Jon Wiggett

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-16
« Reply #30 on: May 27, 2015, 04:55:40 PM »
Niall,

having played the course several times my take on the tee shot at #5 is it is a decision between laying up on the left side of the fairway on the top level short of the bunkers. This leaves a long second shot but one that is played straight up the step in front of the green so as the ball is not deflected away to the left. Or you can try to hit a sight draw right of center hoping to get a big kick forward from the downslope without going too far right. If successful you are left with a mid to short iron but if the ball is kicked to the right you are left with tricky shot where you are tiptoeing between the diagonal front slope and the slope to the right of the green both of which will throw your ball to the left. Note, from the right side of the fairway the ball will almost certainly be above the feet for a right hander who must try to play a slight cut.

Downwind, with a hard bounce the r/h bunkers are in range for someone who hits the ball 250/60ish of the tee from the standard tees.

Jon

Sean_A

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-16 New
« Reply #31 on: May 28, 2015, 03:33:23 AM »
It is very strange that we should be discussing #5 as if it were in the least controversial.  Jon is spot on with his observations and obviously so. 

CASTLE STUART CONT

We now turn and make the final push for home.  The set of par 3s is very good, but I question the wisdom of introducing a back breaking one-shotter so late in the game.  For all and sundry, due to the large fairway, the hole sets up visually like a short par 4.  There is a certain element of comfort in the left to right movement, but the wind off the Moray Firth will often negate this advantage. 


The home hole is a bit of a modern cliche as a par 5 with an element of risk in going for the green in two.  There is an obvious tee shot line toward the proudly flapping Saltire left of the house, but to be honest the fairway is perhaps overly forgiving.  Below is the dangerous shot. 


And how the shot will look if one hits a rope on the Saltire. 


Let me be clear, Castle Stuart is a masterpiece and should be mentioned in the same sentence with the best GB&I has to offer.  Yes, the course loses its way a bit on the back nine, but that has as much to do with the high standard set by the front nine as anything else.  The location is postcard perfect and the architecture of the clubhouse only enhances the setting.  The location a scant few miles from Inverness Airport, commodious house and soon to be available lodges makes it a very easy choice to include Castle Stuart in northern Scotland itinerary.  Let us hope the new Palmer 18 (which I think Parsinen will have two hands in the design) and planned various lodgings don't spoil the scenery or vibe of this extraordinary course.  1*  2015

Ran's Review.
http://golfclubatlas.com/courses-by-country/scotland/castle-stuart-golf-links/

Ciao 
« Last Edit: April 29, 2023, 04:52:00 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2023: Clyne

Rich Goodale

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #32 on: May 28, 2015, 03:43:15 AM »
"Commodious accommodation?"  Please elucidate, Sean.
Life is good.

Any afterlife is unlikely and/or dodgy.

Jean-Paul Parodi

Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-13
« Reply #33 on: May 28, 2015, 05:13:34 AM »
Niall,

Checkout Ran's tour. The quote for hole 5

"Tweaking continues at Castle Stuart. These two pot bunkers seen long right at the 360 yard mark from the tee were added after studying play for two years. Castle Stuartís firm running conditions are such that the pair are in play on downwind days."


I haven't played CS, but could see how bunkers are in play on downwind days. I rather like that as a concept: accuracy should be put on premium when distance is aided by wind.

Alex

I've played the course 5 or 6 times in various wind conditions and over several years so have witnessed various course changes as they have happened. I also hit a decent ball, not a long ball but a decent one off the tee and have played at CS with better/longer players than me and have never seen anyone get near to the position of those RHS bunkers. Admittedly that is a small sample but I tend to think it illustrates that a bunker some 300 hundred odd yards distant to the side of a 40/50 yard fairway and well off the line of play isn't going to get much action.

Irrespective of what Ran says in his course tour, I think it fairly obvious that the point of the RHS bunkers, like much at CS, is largely visual rather than having any real strategic/penal value. For instance, think of what the ODG's from the golden age would have made of these RHS bunkers. They were for ever bringing in bunkers closer to the line of play to catch nearly good shots rather than bad shots. Arguably this is a throw back to before the golden age of architecture.

Niall

Sean_A

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #34 on: May 28, 2015, 05:36:53 AM »
"Commodious accommodation?"  Please elucidate, Sean.

 ;D

Ciao
New plays planned for 2023: Clyne

Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-16
« Reply #35 on: May 28, 2015, 05:51:37 AM »
It is very strange that we should be discussing #5 as if it were in the least controverial.  Jon is spot on with his observations and obviously so.  

[

Sean

Jon is a professional golfer. He might be able to draw or fade the ball to order but most of us show up with one shot shape and get on with it. He also hits the ball a long way with only an old steel shaft and a lump of iron at the bottom which if I recall he euthemistically calls a rescue club. I could therefore well believe that Jon might be able to get into those bunkers on occasion although being a first class golfer he would be smart enough to avoid doing this, which was the point Rich made. The rest of us needn't worry about these bunkers as we'll never get there with our tee shot, and they will never be in the line of play for the approach, which was the point I was making.

So why have them ? Well the answer is obvious and not in the way you think. As I said to Alex, the reason is I think clearly visual. It's no accident that they can be seen from the tee just above the ridge line where the fairway falls away. They are there to deceive/challenge the first time visitor and make them think about line and length of tee shot. Once you've played it you know theres nothing to worry about and they simply become an aiming point. The 7th at Silloth used to have a similar bunker (before your time) and was filled in recent years, largely because it was redundant and to save money on not having to keep it. If CS was a members club I've no doubt that these RHS bunkers would go the same way.

As for why discuss it, well I think it illustrative in many ways of the rest of the course and even sums up Mark Parsinens philosophy of look hard play easy. I think that works well the first or maybe second time round, but eventually even this hacker likes a bit more challenge beyond trying to make decent contact with the ball.

Overall a very interesting course with a lot of interesting stuff and ideas that are worthy of discussion. I'm just not sure that all the clever ideas are worthwhile or have come off as intended.

Niall


Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #36 on: May 28, 2015, 09:06:42 AM »
Sean

Final comment/question. You refer to the "obvious tee shot line" being to aim for the flag. Was that because someone told you to do that or did you intuitively feel that was the line ? The reason I ask is I recall Boony making comment when he played there that he thought or had assumed that the fairway was further to the right and even with that forwarning, and having played the course a couple of times, I still managed to catch myself out by aiming right of the "proper" line.

Niall

Jon Wiggett

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #37 on: May 28, 2015, 04:01:24 PM »
Niall,

I recon I hit it about 25 yards past you on average and perhaps another 10 yards on top if we both bust it however thanks for the complement of having shots to order which was once true but lately (last 20 years) I often order the wrong thing ;D.

It seems to me that you are against the rhs bunkers because they only come into play for a small number of players. If this is the case then most hazards off the tee should be scrapped.

Jon

Mark Pavy

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #38 on: May 28, 2015, 04:41:08 PM »
Jon, do you really think that a guy who hits it 260 should be playing from the green tees? Firm, fast fairways at 6100 yards.


David_Tepper

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #39 on: May 28, 2015, 05:18:23 PM »
Gentleman -
 
Given that a stiff breeze at Castle Stuart can come from the west or from the east and given the number tee boxes on each hole, I do think trying to discuss distances and evaluate the position of certain hazards at Castle Stuart is a bit of a fool's errand. Clearly some hazards on some holes will come into play for some players on some days and they will not on other days. It is a simple as that.

DT

 

James Boon

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #40 on: May 28, 2015, 05:27:53 PM »
Sean,

Thanks for the photos. Glad to see you make it to one of my favourite parts of the World and enjoy the golf (here and further north).

Gentleman -
 
Given that a stiff breeze at Castle Stuart can come from the west or from the east and given the number tee boxes on each hole, I do think trying to discuss distances and evaluate the position of certain hazards at Castle Stuart is a bit of a fool's errand. Clearly some hazards on some holes will come into play for some players on some days and they will not on other days. It is a simple as that.

DT 

That's a good point David, there seems to be a general feel around here that course exposed to the wind should have wider fairways, and so to some extent surely the same goes the variety of bunker positions along the hole, some closer to the tee, others much further away.

I've only played CS 4 or 5 times and its mostly been into a big west wind. I expected a few pics of the 16th from Sean as a fan of short par 4s? What did you think Sean? Last time I played it was a 3 wood downwind on 16 as I felt just short was better than in the back bunkers, followed by the same club on 17! In those sort of winds, I can imagine people getting close to the bunkers on 5...  ::)

As for the 18th that Niall mentions, yes I remember reading that the line was on the flagpole, but it felt further right visually when I first played it.

Cheers,

James
2023 Highlights: Hollinwell (Notts), Brora, Aberdovey, Royal St Davids

"It celebrates the unadulterated pleasure of being in a dialogue with nature while knocking a ball round on foot." Richard Pennell

Jon Wiggett

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #41 on: May 29, 2015, 01:57:24 AM »
Jon, do you really think that a guy who hits it 260 should be playing from the green tees? Firm, fast fairways at 6100 yards.



Mark,

though I do not think someone should play from too far back in the end I think it is up to the player themselves to decide. If you think I shouldn't play from the green tees because they are just 6100 then that means I could not play the majority of courses in Scotland. Having said all that I never said I played from the green tee did I!!!

Firm fairways, downhill, downwind means 260 can easily be 320+

Jon


David Davis

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS 1-5
« Reply #42 on: May 29, 2015, 05:08:26 AM »
Sean,

I guess it must of been your first play there? Did you like it? Where does it fit on your scale? Do you think it's worth the money? Would you go again or do you have a desire to play it again immediate?



Ok I was patient enough! Sean what's your answer now that your finished with the tour. It's not like I'm just going to let you off the hook...
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Sean_A

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #43 on: May 29, 2015, 06:14:00 AM »
DD

There is usually a desire to play the best courses.  However, as much as I admire and think the course is great, its a bit expensive for my pocketbook.  That said, I wouldn't rule out paying to play it again because its so close to the airport.  Many likely think CS is one of those modern courses which is worth a look or two.  I think CS is far better than that and from a design PoV as good as the best courses in GB&I...I would give it a Doaker 8, but only one star for my scale just because of the cost.  It really is a pleasure to get a glimpse of how and why wide works on links...the theoretical talk is over.  For me, its a good leap better than Trump Aberdeen and because of the width a good leap better than Renaissance....the leap being 7-8.  I have only walked Kingsbarns so I don't have a good feel for it.  I don't think there are any other GB&I moderns in the mix for best...are there?

Niall

An element you forget about with the RH bunkers on #5 is the recovery value. Some of the best bunkers are placed to threaten tee shots and recoveries. 

RE 18: no I didn't read about the flag as a line, but its an obvious line which is in effect the middle of the fairway.  Sure folks can go 20 yards right, but there isn't much point unless you intend to go for broke.  To me as a modest hitter the more sensible thing is to play short of the green and hope it takes the kick forward rather than a full on assualt over the sand. 

Boony - I liked 16 a lot.  Its a sleeper hole which sounds off birdie, but is harder to achieve than it looks.  No question the bunkers can be in play on #5.  As I say, my playing partner was damn near with them and it wasn't super windy or super firm. 

Ciao
« Last Edit: December 14, 2020, 05:35:16 AM by Sean_A »
New plays planned for 2023: Clyne

Ryan Coles

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #44 on: May 29, 2015, 06:35:09 AM »
I think Sean has Castle Stuart bang on and Masterpiece is an apt description.

I find it a difficult call with Kingsbarns - both are such great fun. What really shone through for me at CS was the attention to detail, they'd clearly agonised over every little aspect. I also think it is a genius routing.

I do believe if they were 150 years old, both would get 9's.

Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #45 on: May 29, 2015, 08:45:06 AM »
Gentleman -
 
Given that a stiff breeze at Castle Stuart can come from the west or from the east and given the number tee boxes on each hole, I do think trying to discuss distances and evaluate the position of certain hazards at Castle Stuart is a bit of a fool's errand. Clearly some hazards on some holes will come into play for some players on some days and they will not on other days. It is a simple as that.

DT

 

David

I agree in the sense that you can't be definitive and say no one who hits the ball less than 350 off the tips will get in that bunker, as conditions ie. wind and run, can and do vary from moment to moment. What you can do is try and figure out how often they will be in play in various conditions, from various tees and for various strength of players. I think considering all the variables it's fair to say that in only a very small percentage of time will those bunkers be in play. That being the case, to my mind they are clearly more for visual effect rather than having any startegic significance.

Jon

I'm not against these bunkers as I think they perform a visual function, not a strategic one, however looking at the hole in it's entirety I really just don't see where the startegy is, not for a player of my moderate ability.

Niall

 

Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #46 on: May 29, 2015, 09:06:19 AM »

Niall

An element you forget about with the RH bunkers on #5 is the recovery value. Some of the best bunkers are placed to threaten tee shots and recoveries.  

RE 18: no I didn't read about the flag as a line, but its an obvious line which is in effect the middle of the fairway.  Sure folks can go 20 yards right, but there isn't much point unless you intend to go for broke.  To me as a modest hitter the more sensible thing is to play short of the green and hope it takes the kick forward rather than a full on assualt over the sand.  


Sean

I'm not really sure what you mean by "recovery value", and being there to "threaten tee shots and recoveries". Do you mean the traditional use of a bunker as a hazard ?

Re the 18th tee shot, what I was getting at was whether you intuitively knew where the fairway was over the rise or whether someone told you that aiming on the flag pole was the line. Or indeed did you just assume that being a modern course, aiming for the landmark in the background must be the play  ;D.

Seriously though, what told you what the correct line was ?

Niall

Niall C

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #47 on: May 29, 2015, 09:09:24 AM »
I think Sean has Castle Stuart bang on and Masterpiece is an apt description.

I find it a difficult call with Kingsbarns - both are such great fun. What really shone through for me at CS was the attention to detail, they'd clearly agonised over every little aspect. I also think it is a genius routing.

I do believe if they were 150 years old, both would get 9's.

Ryan

As a matter of interest what makes you think it is a genius routing ?

Niall

Michael Graham

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #48 on: May 29, 2015, 09:35:00 AM »

Niall

An element you forget about with the RH bunkers on #5 is the recovery value. Some of the best bunkers are placed to threaten tee shots and recoveries.  

RE 18: no I didn't read about the flag as a line, but its an obvious line which is in effect the middle of the fairway.  Sure folks can go 20 yards right, but there isn't much point unless you intend to go for broke.  To me as a modest hitter the more sensible thing is to play short of the green and hope it takes the kick forward rather than a full on assualt over the sand.  


Sean

I'm not really sure what you mean by "recovery value", and being there to "threaten tee shots and recoveries". Do you mean the traditional use of a bunker as a hazard ?

Re the 18th tee shot, what I was getting at was whether you intuitively knew where the fairway was over the rise or whether someone told you that aiming on the flag pole was the line. Or indeed did you just assume that being a modern course, aiming for the landmark in the background must be the play  ;D.

Seriously though, what told you what the correct line was ?

Niall

Niall

If I recall correctly the course guide that is included in the welcome pack states that the ideal line on the 18th is the Saltire. I know what you mean though, the first time I played, it seemed like the ideal line was further right than the flag pole.

Michael

Sean_A

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Re: Capacious CASTLE STUART GOLF LINKS
« Reply #49 on: May 29, 2015, 09:46:43 AM »

Niall

An element you forget about with the RH bunkers on #5 is the recovery value. Some of the best bunkers are placed to threaten tee shots and recoveries.  

RE 18: no I didn't read about the flag as a line, but its an obvious line which is in effect the middle of the fairway.  Sure folks can go 20 yards right, but there isn't much point unless you intend to go for broke.  To me as a modest hitter the more sensible thing is to play short of the green and hope it takes the kick forward rather than a full on assualt over the sand.  


Sean

I'm not really sure what you mean by "recovery value", and being there to "threaten tee shots and recoveries". Do you mean the traditional use of a bunker as a hazard ?

Re the 18th tee shot, what I was getting at was whether you intuitively knew where the fairway was over the rise or whether someone told you that aiming on the flag pole was the line. Or indeed did you just assume that being a modern course, aiming for the landmark in the background must be the play  ;D.

Seriously though, what told you what the correct line was ?

Niall

Recovery value for bunkers is when guys hit poor drives....they then need to be mindful of the bunkers.  I don't like too much of this kind of bunkering like we see on championship courses which are littered with the concept, but once in a while is good, especially if they are in play for  a big drive. 

Quite literally, I saw the Saltire on 18 and thought that must be the line...why else have the flag there?  As I say, one can go right, but I am not convinced flirting with the right rough is a smart play.  The course is full of these sorts of driving choices.

Ciao
New plays planned for 2023: Clyne

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