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John Chilver-Stainer

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #25 on: May 17, 2022, 02:38:24 PM »
John


Do you think that is actually strategy ? After all it's a route to the same result. Seems like a no-brainer to me. A bit like going for the hole by hitting a draw rather than a fade. Either way you are still going for the hole, whereas laying up is distinct from going for the green/hole.


Niall


I take your point, if Strategy is defined as choosing a shot deliberatly not to get in or close to the hole. But is a Strategic golf course just about laying up or not laying up?


I've always understood a Strategic golf course is where one is confronted with a choice of alternative shots.


Approach shots, where a bounce off a kicker plate, or playing to a back stop, or a bump and run negotiating gaps between bunkers, or just a well struck shot with backspin, can all be defined as requiring "Strategic" consideration.
Strategic consideration of the "risk and reward" of the different shots to get close or into the hole.


A strategic Par 3 would be no different?




V. Kmetz

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #26 on: May 17, 2022, 03:28:57 PM »
I hate to also parse terms with a good exchange, but I think there HAS to be strategy in a one shot hole, otherwise strategy would have to be only in a sequence...anytime one put a tee shot in the fairway, the strategy of the hole would be done, no? Unless one is saying that because of the flat teeing ground, lie is the only part of strategy in approach shots, then there HAS to be strategy.


I've not been playing much for going on ten years, but I still caddie 30x a year and I still recall one shot holes, I still observe, advise and still recall playing all sorts of different ways, even sub,<100 holes where it was right to fly it or bounce it; or try low ones or super high ones... there's a course (Richter Park - Danbury CT) I've played all my life with two -over water one shot holes with vastly different greens that I've played with every club from 3 iron to 9 iron, fades and draws... the essence of the holes didn't change... wasn't that strategy?... what the hole/the shot forces me to consider, under changing conditions?  I agree that the better the player and/or plainer the hole, the less strategy comes into play...a 5 foot down hill 125 yard shot into a 2 acre green with few contours, gentle rough and no hazards is probably an un-strategic hole.
 
For me, strategy comes into mind when you DO NOT hit the sweet shot, as much as when I think I can take advantage of a contour feature... where do I want to miss?  where CAN"T I miss? What's the likely place I'm going to hit it?....The wind, the pin, the club, the feel of the day... The essence of strategy is in the choices of method of attack.  ... I (have always) disagree with poster(s) who cite the 16th ANGC as absent strategy... for certain pins, for elites... perhaps.  But those right side pins are another matter, because going for a "2" can easily result in a 4 or 5, or put great stress on putting...and long misses on that hole, to any pin are a delicate matter...and so this goes back to the strategy I think on the tee...that factor of how bad a long miss is, is a strategic consideration if one is between or nearer a long club.


Lastly, strategy implies that one choice presents one level of risk for one perceived reward, and so on with any other choice-combinations.  For me, all but the plainest par 3s carry this.
« Last Edit: May 17, 2022, 03:40:38 PM by V. Kmetz »
"The tee shot must first be hit straight and long between a vast bunker on the left which whispers 'slice' in the player's ear, and a wilderness on the right which induces a hurried hook." -

Niall C

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #27 on: May 18, 2022, 07:56:11 AM »
John


Do you think that is actually strategy ? After all it's a route to the same result. Seems like a no-brainer to me. A bit like going for the hole by hitting a draw rather than a fade. Either way you are still going for the hole, whereas laying up is distinct from going for the green/hole.


Niall


I take your point, if Strategy is defined as choosing a shot deliberatly not to get in or close to the hole. But is a Strategic golf course just about laying up or not laying up?


I've always understood a Strategic golf course is where one is confronted with a choice of alternative shots.


Approach shots, where a bounce off a kicker plate, or playing to a back stop, or a bump and run negotiating gaps between bunkers, or just a well struck shot with backspin, can all be defined as requiring "Strategic" consideration.
Strategic consideration of the "risk and reward" of the different shots to get close or into the hole.


A strategic Par 3 would be no different?


John


You make a good point and indeed after I typed my response I think I came to the same conclusion as you although really I think it only applies to the top class player. I think for the normal rank and file golfer they really only have one shape of shot and don't really have the wherewithal to work the ball different ways.


Re "strategic" I think you are correct in that also. There needs to be more than one viable option such that a conscious decision is made by the player. Ira mentions the par 3 at Cypress point and requiring to go for the fairway because you can't reach the green, in which instance that wouldn't be strategic (for Ira and indeed me) since there is no option.


Niall

Sean_A

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #28 on: May 18, 2022, 08:47:02 AM »
John


Do you think that is actually strategy ? After all it's a route to the same result. Seems like a no-brainer to me. A bit like going for the hole by hitting a draw rather than a fade. Either way you are still going for the hole, whereas laying up is distinct from going for the green/hole.


Niall


I take your point, if Strategy is defined as choosing a shot deliberatly not to get in or close to the hole. But is a Strategic golf course just about laying up or not laying up?


I've always understood a Strategic golf course is where one is confronted with a choice of alternative shots.


Approach shots, where a bounce off a kicker plate, or playing to a back stop, or a bump and run negotiating gaps between bunkers, or just a well struck shot with backspin, can all be defined as requiring "Strategic" consideration.
Strategic consideration of the "risk and reward" of the different shots to get close or into the hole.


A strategic Par 3 would be no different?


John


You make a good point and indeed after I typed my response I think I came to the same conclusion as you although really I think it only applies to the top class player. I think for the normal rank and file golfer they really only have one shape of shot and don't really have the wherewithal to work the ball different ways.


Re "strategic" I think you are correct in that also. There needs to be more than one viable option such that a conscious decision is made by the player. Ira mentions the par 3 at Cypress point and requiring to go for the fairway because you can't reach the green, in which instance that wouldn't be strategic (for Ira and indeed me) since there is no option.


Niall

The strategic aspect of the design is that there is alternative. An absolutely penal hole would offer no alternative. The penal-strategic continuum exists independently of player ability. Stick with CPC 16, imo the hole leans heavily on the penal end of spectrum because there is a forced water carry. Offering the length of carry gives the hole a choice between penal strategies...which is still penal. I think (not sure) this is partly what RTJ Jr was speaking about with his idea of heroic carries.

I honestly think much of the confusion about penal/strategic has to do with the ODGs assigning positive and negative value to each end and that thinking carried forward to today. The best architecture will explore the entire continuum. Depending on the design purpose the archie can design toward one extreme or the other. There really should be no good or bad about it unless the archie misjudges the target audience.

Ciao
New plays planned for 2022: Erewash, St Pats, The Loop x2, Arcadia Bluffs South, Lawsonia Links, Shoreacres, Culver Academies & Crystal Downs

Thomas Dai

  • Karma: +0/-0
Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #29 on: May 18, 2022, 03:12:25 PM »
Worth mentioning that there are likely different strategic, penal even, implications for physically weaker and frail players and for those who can’t reach a particular green in one shot even with a one-in-a-million tee shot played downhill and downwind. And before someone mentions tee-it-forward remember that there’s a likelihood that no further forward tee or even a place to casually drop a ball is available.
Atb

Duncan Cheslett

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #30 on: May 21, 2022, 01:47:57 AM »
The 9th at Cavendish (viewed here from the adjacent 14th tee) has a viciously back to front sloping green. A putt from above a front pin will almost inevitably end up in the bunker at the bottom of the hill.


The strategic shot to a front pin is to find the grassy bowl immediately short left of the green and hope for an easy chip and putt.


9a by Duncan Cheslett, on Flickr
« Last Edit: May 21, 2022, 01:51:29 AM by Duncan Cheslett »

Mike_Trenham

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #31 on: May 21, 2022, 02:13:11 AM »
If par three is not strategic, then it must be penal, if it’s not strategic or penal then maybe it’s too assessable, if it’s not strategic, penal or too assessable, could it be unplayable, if it’s not strategic, penal, too assessable, or unplayable then it must be way over-rated.
Proud member of a Doak 3.

Forrest Richardson

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #32 on: May 21, 2022, 08:39:57 PM »
At present we're designing more par-3s that ever before. Jeff and I feel we're becoming "The Short Course Experts" given that we've got 14 par-3 courses on the planning boards, with one fully under construction.

Can par-3s have strategy? Absolutely. It rests in the putting surfaces, but also in how those surfaces work with the ball coming inbound.

As many know, I've opined that ALL golf holes have strategy, it's just that some have different types and different doses. When I re-wrote Trent Jones' theory about "Strategic Design," I offered, instead, that there are five basic golf hole types. Each golf hole can present itself to players differently, and with different forms of these five strategic qualities.

The types of "strategy" being:

• Heroic
• Detour
• Lay-up
• Penal
• Open

You combine the above to create golf holes, and in many cases the same finished hole will be mostly heroic to one player, while perhaps a lay-up or detour hole to the next. And, on a windy day, even the typical player who might approach it as heroic, could be playing it as a lay-up.

At the par-3, a heroic quality would be one where the player decides how much to bite off and I think we can all agree what this looks like. The more risk an a particular angle toward the flagstick or green area requires more risk..."Be the hero." There are numerous features that can bring this strategy about — including the particular tees (and angle created) being used.

A Detour strategy would be a quality where there is more than one way to get to the flagstick. It may be a draw around a hazard or feaure; or another, completely different line of play, perhaps using the ground game. Hence: "Detour." I might place a bunker in the front-center of the green from a set of tees, and there could be three fully unique shots to attack a cup location.

A Lay-up strategy — even at the one-shot hole — is the purposeful decision "forced" upon the player to throttle back. Like Hell's Half Acre, where a strong hitter must carefully gauge a tee shot to come as close to the broken ground as possible, yet not too far. At the par-3, this strategy is simply to "wait it out" and take the chance of the decent short game, and a one putt in favor of the full on attack. It may even be that a lay-up purposefully 20-30 yards short is better that the dreaded 7 yard pitch.

The Penal strategy is a forced play — "This way, or no other..." whether it be the angle...the width...the distance or other factor. Penal is the absence of choices, at least for a particular player at a particular moment in time...and on a particular shot. How is that a "strategy"? Well, for one, it is the player who is deciding what type of shot, and it is this decision that "makes" the hole what it is. So, to be "penal", a player must come to the conclusion that there is no other option. Once he or she drifts outside that notion, another type of hole (shot) is brought on to the scene. That self-inflicted decision is, of itself, "strategy" on the part of the designer. Like Indiana Jones — we think there is only one way out...PENAL...yet, we often find we were wrong.

Open is unmistakeable. It is the no-hassle approach with absolutely nothing (or barely anything) as an obstacle. How is that "strategy"? Like all "easy" things in life, it is often the unremarkable stretch of highway for the trucker, the "easy" airspace for the pilot, or the seemingly "easy" report to write that often "gets" to us. Many times it is the easy parts where we fail the worst. We've all been there. So, the absence of any overt challenge in golf can, at times, allow us to rest on our laurels and perform our worst. Such can be the case when we leave the door wide open. Take the full open, flat green — yet with a sharp drop off to the back rear. That is open, yet carelessness in the distance and even a small angle error can bring about trouble.

Anyway — The simply answer Adam - YES. All shots in golf are "strategic" and one cannot exclude the one-shot hole.

« Last Edit: May 21, 2022, 08:49:00 PM by Forrest Richardson »
— Forrest Richardson, Golf Course Architect/ASGCA
    www.golfgroupltd.com
    www.golframes.com

James Bennett

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #33 on: May 21, 2022, 11:11:27 PM »
I can't believe Brian Walshe hasn't responded to this thread yet.   :o
Bob; its impossible to explain some of the clutter that gets recalled from the attic between my ears. .  (SL Solow)

Erik J. Barzeski

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #34 on: May 22, 2022, 07:45:59 AM »
We have all seen the tee shot strategy, usually knowing that the total dispersion pattern is about 20% of length, i.e. 60 yards on a 300 yard tee shot, so aim at least 30 yards away from trouble, but I'm not sure how they attack the similar strategic thinking on par 3 holes.
We analyze it just how we wrote in our book: you aim where the lightest shade of grey exists based on the size of your Shot Zone. It's not complicated. Everyone's Shot Zone will be a different size/shape.

But also realize that not everyone can coolly apply this type of thinking, too. People like to think "oh, but this time, I can go at the flag because…" of whatever. So, you can't necessarily design a par three for this type of cool customer, because 90% of your golfers are still going to be aiming at the flag "because I have a short iron in my hands" and they have no idea how bad they actually are with that club (or PGA Tour players are with that club, etc.).
Erik J. Barzeski @iacas
Author, Lowest Score Wins, and Lifetime Student of the Game

Forrest Richardson

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #35 on: May 22, 2022, 10:38:27 AM »
Erik says: "...90% of your golfers are still going to be aiming at the flag 'because I have a short iron in my hands' and they have no idea how bad they actually are with that club (or PGA Tour players are with that club, etc.)....

Well, that sums up the 'old' tone on GCA, that golfers are "stupid." I thought we got past that? First of all, this is not a statistic, but an opinion. Golfers are typically very intelligent people. Sure, we have the occasional "bust it all the time" player, but my experience is that more and more golfers are thoughtful and purposeful. The education about golf design and such factors as the ground game, green contours, etc. are now a part of a foursome's discussion and social interaction.
— Forrest Richardson, Golf Course Architect/ASGCA
    www.golfgroupltd.com
    www.golframes.com

Erik J. Barzeski

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Re: Strategy in par threes
« Reply #36 on: May 22, 2022, 03:52:55 PM »
Well, that sums up the 'old' tone on GCA, that golfers are "stupid."
They kinda are. Often.

I thought we got past that? First of all, this is not a statistic, but an opinion.
Why would one "get past" an opinion (I never billed it as a statistic)?

Golfers are typically very intelligent people.
They may be, but yet… they often don't understand statistics or have reasonable expectations.

Sure, we have the occasional "bust it all the time" player, but my experience is that more and more golfers are thoughtful and purposeful. The education about golf design and such factors as the ground game, green contours, etc. are now a part of a foursome's discussion and social interaction.
I don't know what to tell you. We regularly consult with some higher level players who don't understand the size of their Shot Zones, etc. And this is years after we (and others) have been educating players on these types of things.
Erik J. Barzeski @iacas
Author, Lowest Score Wins, and Lifetime Student of the Game

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