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Thomas Dai

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GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« on: October 06, 2017, 12:47:11 PM »
Rans splendid updated profile of RND/Westward Ho! has got me wondering about the many, well I shall call them 'rustic' courses, the kind of courses many on here pretty obviously love, ones that have been around forever, maybe are on common land and have sheep and cattle grazing on them and where the maintenance regimes are perhaps somewhat more 'natural' than 'manicured'.

Now the big 'if'.

'If' these courses didn't have the grazing animals, the dog walkers, the horse riders, bikers, footballers, the fences around the greens and 'if' they had loads of £$€ and men and machines allocated to their upkeep and maintenance, well where would they sit in the ranking/rating of courses! Would they sit higher up? Which other courses would they push into lower positions? RND vrs TOC?


Not that I am advocating such changes, far from it, but where would the likes of RND, Yelverton, Appleby, Pennard, Cleeve, Minch' Old, Southerndown, Kington, maybe even RWN/Brancaster sit?


Atb


PS - no insult of present/historical maintenance practices is intended. What is, is what is!

« Last Edit: October 06, 2017, 12:54:52 PM by Thomas Dai »

jeffwarne

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #1 on: October 06, 2017, 01:15:52 PM »
They'd be higher up and golf would be worse off for it
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

MJohnson

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #2 on: October 06, 2017, 02:57:25 PM »
There would be a lot more people crowding them too. I will add Church Stretton to the list as I was playing there today. Walkers, sheep, magnificent views, very rustic and a wonderful course.
2019 courses - Enville, Wharton Park,

Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #3 on: October 06, 2017, 03:38:46 PM »
Care to elaborate?


Give say RND/WH! the same funding, resources, £$€, manpower, machinery, support as TOC has and how would  RND/WH! be regarded? As good as TOC? As good as RStG/Sandwich or Birkdale or Lytham or wherever? Not as good as them and their like but top-20? Good enough as a course to hold The Open (logistics assuming)?


Would somewhere say like Yelverton or Southerndown - or pick your own course - leapfrog some of the usual suspects southwest of London or elsewhere in the ratings? How about say Pennard vrs say Royal Troon or Dornoch?


Atb










jeffwarne

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Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #4 on: October 06, 2017, 04:52:07 PM »
Thomas,
My opinion is most raters can only travel so much.
They rate the courses high they are supposed to rate high.


Could anyone really rate Troon higher than Pennard without the history, pedigree, and prejudiced prior high ranking of Troon?
The rater's never been to Pennard and if he has he's predisposed to rate it lower than Troon(or follows some stupid rules set out by the magazine)
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

Niall C

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #5 on: October 07, 2017, 08:11:30 AM »
Jeff

I agreed with you up to the point where you slighted Troon  ;D. I do take your point that raters are pack animals and generally only rate top courses and therefore likely haven't heard of Pennard. However a lot of them also couldn't find there own arse using both hands. When I read pish about prevailing wind, hole directions etc, I do wonder why they didn't just stay at home and rate the course using Google Earth. Troon is relatively low on eye candy therefore isn't rated as highly as it should in my not so humble opinion, so in that respect I think Troon was a poor example for you to pick.

With regards to Minch, Cleeve and Appleby I rather think they would continue to be ignored by the raters and indeed would likely lose their USB once nature took its course and the holes became corridors flanked by scrub and trees.

Niall

Jon Wiggett

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Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2017, 03:51:43 AM »

I would also back up what Niall says. Rating seems to be so leaning towards pack mentality that none 'in' courses only have a chance with massive national/international publicity. Top of the list of what makes a course great seems to be the setting and how 'AWESOME' it is rather than any of the substance of the course's GCA attributes. Rankings are purely about selling magazines and little else.


In regards to Minch, Cleeve, Appleby, etc.... much of their lower rankings has to do with snobbery and the fact that grazing is seen as lowering rather raising the quality of the golf course. Even on sites such as this this is sadly the case as demonstrated in this years failed group trip to Askernish where many did not want to play there until after the grazing stopped even though it meant missing the best time of year to play there.


Jon

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #7 on: October 08, 2017, 05:44:25 AM »
A great deal of the charm of these places is that they are golf as it was meant to be - rustic and natural.  Subjugate them to country club maintenance and they would be lesser, not improved.  If only there was a course like them in Michigan that I could live next to.

Sean_A

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Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #8 on: October 08, 2017, 06:13:35 AM »
When I am rating I have to work to a list.  If a course isn't on the list many raters won't bother.  But to be fair, Cleeve Cloud and Minch Old (chuck in Painswick as well) aren't good enough to be top 100 GB&I.  Its a tough ask to be ranked top 100, not that it matters except as a very good marketing tool.  I have tried to get courses on "the list", but to no avail.  Higher ups control the agenda.

We have a perfect course in question....Kington.  Some of what makes Kington excellent is the hazy line between rough and fairway.  That is accomplished by rough fading in and out randomly and the fairway being a bit less fair than one would expect.  The club is trying to create more definition ala every other Tom, Dick and Harry course, which to me is a mistake.

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

jeffwarne

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Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #9 on: October 08, 2017, 09:01:25 AM »


 what makes Kington excellent is the hazy line between rough and fairway.  That is accomplished by rough fading in and out randomly and the fairway being a bit less fair than one would expect.  The club is trying to create more definition ala every other Tom, Dick and Harry course, which to me is a mistake.

Ciao


The biggest change ive seen in my 30 years of playing li ks golf.
Irrigation makes this possible.
Its the LEAST appealing thing I see when watching televised links golf.Kingsbarns-looks awful this week on TV-despite being a great course
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #10 on: October 08, 2017, 11:55:40 AM »
Turn things around.
What “if” some of the usually highly rated courses had the rustic/common land maintenance regime and lack of £$€ that some of the courses mentioned herein do?
Would they be as highly rated (I imagine not) and if not where would they sit in comparative terms. Would they say drop out of the top-100?
Atb

Kalen Braley

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Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #11 on: October 09, 2017, 12:09:22 PM »
I think this topic begs the question....why doesn't someone do this it if its desired?  Or is this something just GCA.com nerds get off on?.




jeffwarne

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Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #12 on: October 09, 2017, 01:04:40 PM »

 Top of the list of what makes a course great seems to be the setting and how 'AWESOME' it is rather than any of the substance of the course's GCA attributes.

Jon


Well put
"Let's slow the damned greens down a bit, not take the character out of them." Tom Doak
"Take their focus off the grass and put it squarely on interesting golf." Don Mahaffey

Garland Bayley

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Re: GB&I rustic courses and what if....
« Reply #13 on: October 11, 2017, 01:57:26 AM »
They'd be higher up and golf would be worse off for it

Amen to that.
"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

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