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Joe Hancock

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Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #25 on: July 10, 2022, 11:07:42 AM »
Pietro

Greatness is over-rated.

Ciao


Sean, ironically I was thinking about starting a thread by asking if some courses are too great. Your post resonates with me.




Start it.  I'd like to see what people think constitutes "too great", and why.  Just for laughs.


How to kill a thread before it begins……
" What the hell is the point of architecture and excellence in design if a "clever" set up trumps it all?" Peter Pallotta, June 21, 2016

"People aren't picking a side of the fairway off a tee because of a randomly internally contoured green ."  jeffwarne, February 24, 2017

Tom_Doak

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Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #26 on: July 10, 2022, 11:17:41 AM »

There’s subjectivity / individuality in this as well (like there is with any made-up criteria for ranking, including fun, strategy, variety, playability)… but a few courses where I can imagine myself giving up on the desire to hold a medal round include:

- Askernish





Ally:  I am a fan of Askernish, and I was disappointed to hear a recent report on the course that was not good at all.  [The rabbits are taking over!]


The rough can be brutal, but of course it varies with the season and varies from one year to the next, so it is very hard to quantify.  I sometimes wonder how raters are supposed to think about things like that [or like the green speeds at Oakmont or the wind at Cape Wickham, to cite other examples].  It doesn't seem like it should disqualify a course, but it doesn't seem like you should ignore it or assume better conditions, either -- the key is how does it affect play on the day and the enjoyment of same.  The best approach would be for raters to rate it based on the day they were there, but some seem to go with an agenda in place.


There is no way Askernish is getting votes for the top 100 based on how much anyone enjoyed stroke play.  It is getting votes based on its uniqueness and "story" and the fact that it has some all-world holes in the mix -- it is being set as an example that golf should not require more trappings than that.  But, you could argue the same for Brora or Cleeve or Westward Ho!, and then you have to rationalize why you are including some of them but not others, and it turns out that many raters have mental quotas for all of these different categories and different designers and the like.


But everyone makes room for Pine Valley, even though it needs the same sort of exception for 75% of all golfers.

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #27 on: July 10, 2022, 11:20:24 AM »


When you consider where a course sits in a “best” ranking, do you prioritise a course with numerous fun shots and loads of variety; but one that doesn’t suit keeping your score? Or do you prioritise a course that challenges you to make decisions in order to finish your 18 holes with a card in hand?

They are not mutually exclusive. But I play two very different kinds of golf. I often *enjoy* the first kind of course more, for fun, for a laugh, with friends… But it’s the second kind of course that keeps me coming back. This throwaway the scorecard and pencil is liberating for sure. But the essence of golf is also about thinking your way to getting the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible.



It occurs to me after reading this thread that these two criteria are two sides of the same coin.


For most golfers [and even the best golfers, in extreme conditions], playability is about keeping the player engaged.  If the course is difficult, the golfer just gives up mentally somewhere mid-round.  It's all about the right amount of challenge, and different people will have different takes on that, depending on their abilities.

Charles Lund

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Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #28 on: July 10, 2022, 12:44:38 PM »
For the record, I"ve played 35 of the Top 100 Great Britain and Ireland courses on the new list.


Yesterday I played St. Patrick's Golf Links.  I moved up on three of the par fours to the Granite tees.  I hit 12 good to very good tee shots.  I had interesting and challenging shots with hybrids into a few par fours and recall hitting 8 irons on three occasions.  It was fun and I stayed engaged.


Also played Murvagh on this trip from about 6400 yards instead of 6700 yards.  Played The Valley Course at Portrush from a little over 6000 yards at recommendation of the starter.  Played both the Ballyliffin courses one set of tees up  from where I played until I was last there about four years ago. 


Have played a lot of highly ranked courses from way too far back and was mostly out pf position for the type of shot that worked with the green complex.  The experience limited my appreciation of what made the course something other than way too difficult.


Charles Lund

Kalen Braley

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Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #29 on: July 10, 2022, 12:51:16 PM »
Pietro

Greatness is over-rated.

Ciao

Sean, ironically I was thinking about starting a thread by asking if some courses are too great. Your post resonates with me.

Start it.  I'd like to see what people think constitutes "too great", and why.  Just for laughs.

How to kill a thread before it begins……


I'm with Tom, I'd love to see that thread.

P.S.  As a point of nuance I do think there is a difference between striving to build a great course on a great site, vs trying to build a great course on a crap site.  Outside of perhaps Shadow Creek, where of course they spent an insane amount of money, where else has this been accomplished?

Garland Bayley

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #30 on: July 10, 2022, 01:58:19 PM »
Excuse me starting this thread. I seem to be in chatty form at the moment.


The Top-100 GB&I thread (and the differences between what panels might regard “best”) has me putting this out there.


When you consider where a course sits in a “best” ranking, do you prioritise a course with numerous fun shots and loads of variety; but one that doesn’t suit keeping your score? Or do you prioritise a course that challenges you to make decisions in order to finish your 18 holes with a card in hand?


They are not mutually exclusive. But I play two very different kinds of golf. I often *enjoy* the first kind of course more, for fun, for a laugh, with friends… But it’s the second kind of course that keeps me coming back. This throwaway the scorecard and pencil is liberating for sure. But the essence of golf is also about thinking your way to getting the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible.


In other words, there has to be an element of you against the course over 18 holes. And the best courses are the ones that make you want to concentrate on that time and time again.


What says you lot?

Would this tend to be a distinction between what might be considered top medal play vs. top match play courses IYO?
"I enjoy a course where the challenges are contained WITHIN it, and recovery is part of the game  not a course where the challenge is to stay ON it." Jeff Warne

Ally Mcintosh

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Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #31 on: July 10, 2022, 03:39:26 PM »
Garland,


Not sure this is consistent with others but I find matchplay a less pressurised form of golf than strokeplay because you can afford a few blowups and every shot doesn’t feel like it counts.


From that point of view, courses are also under less pressure in matchplay. They can afford more quirky, penal or compromised holes as every shot doesn’t have to count.

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #32 on: July 10, 2022, 04:30:56 PM »
Garland,


Not sure this is consistent with others but I find matchplay a less pressurised form of golf than strokeplay because you can afford a few blowups and every shot doesn’t feel like it counts.


From that point of view, courses are also under less pressure in matchplay. They can afford more quirky, penal or compromised holes as every shot doesn’t have to count.




They can also afford an "easy" hole.  A short and flat par-4 like the 18th at North Berwick or Prestwick [or for that matter the 9th at St. Andrews] is much more interesting when you are playing a match and you feel like you have to make birdie or you'll lose the hole.

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: The golf part of the “best” golf courses
« Reply #33 on: July 10, 2022, 05:20:39 PM »
Garland,


Not sure this is consistent with others but I find matchplay a less pressurised form of golf than strokeplay because you can afford a few blowups and every shot doesn’t feel like it counts.


From that point of view, courses are also under less pressure in matchplay. They can afford more quirky, penal or compromised holes as every shot doesn’t have to count.




They can also afford an "easy" hole.  A short and flat par-4 like the 18th at North Berwick or Prestwick [or for that matter the 9th at St. Andrews] is much more interesting when you are playing a match and you feel like you have to make birdie or you'll lose the hole.


I would argue that in the case of 9 TOC, its the match which my be interesting, not the hole.


Ciao
New plays planned for 2024: Fraserburgh, Ashridge, Kennemer, de Pan, Eindhoven, Hilversumche, Royal Ostend, Alnmouth & Cruden Bay St Olaf

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