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John Foley

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Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« on: April 08, 2023, 08:01:11 PM »
Not sure if I've thought much about this hole in the past. Watching yesterday seeing how different it played from layup vs bombing it down there and how exacting it became around the green make me think it's really cool. But then again is it really cool only when the pin is on the left side and if so does that make it not?
Integrity in the moment of choice

Bill Gayne

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #1 on: April 08, 2023, 08:09:43 PM »
Bob Crosby and Garrett discuss the hole on the most recent Fried Egg Podcast. It's one of the least changed holes with a very short distance between the member and championship tees. I think it's a great hole with a truly diabolical green complex. Like most of the golf course, I would like to see some tree removal on the hole.

archie_struthers

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #2 on: April 08, 2023, 11:27:27 PM »
 ;D


Watching Friday was a  hoot!    Think it tested the skills of the best in unique ways

Tom_Doak

  • Karma: +1/-1
Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #3 on: April 09, 2023, 05:13:04 PM »
Not sure if it's a great hole . . . I don't think anyone steps up on that tee and is excited to be there.  But it is a VERY difficult little hole.  There's so little margin for error around the green, and different hole locations reward different ways to get close.

Matt Kardash

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #4 on: April 09, 2023, 06:25:00 PM »
It has always been in my top 3 favourite holes to watch the pros tackle at Augusta. Considering the course it is on, I guess you could say that makes it a great hole. It just isn't a beautiful hole that gets your emotions all tingly, I guess.
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Matthew Rose

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #5 on: April 10, 2023, 02:31:11 AM »
I like it but the four bunker cluster looks odd to me.
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Sean_A

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2023, 03:15:36 AM »
I like it but the four bunker cluster looks odd to me.

Nearly all the bunkers look odd!

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Jeff_Brauer

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #7 on: April 10, 2023, 07:08:28 AM »
I'm with TD on this one.  The green is great and I have used the concept many times to build greens.


I believe that cluster of fw bunkers was added by JN in the 80s.  I am not sure what they were originally intended to accomplish, but now, they range from 229 to 277 off the tee (according to the yardage book).  They narrow the fw to about 25 yards, so most players are going to lay up or drive them.  The layup leaves 135-140 yards and driving them (who can't carry 277 on the tour these days?) leaves < 100 yards, which is clearly the easier leave for most pin positions.  Basically, those bunkers take away any real option off of the tee and could be rethought in light of the current game.


Overall, the green makes it a very good short par 4, but other factors probably keep it from being labeled "great."  The natural aesthetics are nice, and the shaping on both fw and green side bunkers leaves something to be desired in my eye. 
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John Foley

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #8 on: April 10, 2023, 07:40:33 AM »
There's so little margin for error around the green, and different hole locations reward different ways to get close.


Perfect answer!!  I was loving watching the issues the layup player would have especially if the missed the FW.
Integrity in the moment of choice

Tom_Doak

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #9 on: April 10, 2023, 08:32:25 AM »


The layup leaves 135-140 yards and driving them (who can't carry 277 on the tour these days?) leaves < 100 yards, which is clearly the easier leave for most pin positions.  Basically, those bunkers take away any real option off of the tee and could be rethought in light of the current game.



I think that was the whole idea . . . the bunkers were built in the age when guys wanted to lay up to 100 yards so they could spin a full wedge shot to stop their approach shots, before the 60-degree wedge became popular.  They are kind of in the wrong place now for the way top players attack a golf hole.  If they were 40-50 yards from the green guys would be much more afraid to take driver, but that might be less interesting, too.  Maybe MacKenzie was right not to have any fairway bunkers? 

Anthony Butler

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #10 on: April 10, 2023, 09:44:56 AM »


The layup leaves 135-140 yards and driving them (who can't carry 277 on the tour these days?) leaves < 100 yards, which is clearly the easier leave for most pin positions.  Basically, those bunkers take away any real option off of the tee and could be rethought in light of the current game.



  If they were 40-50 yards from the green guys would be much more afraid to take driver, but that might be less interesting, too.  Maybe MacKenzie was right not to have any fairway bunkers?

Did the course conditions dictate the strategy on 3 to some degree this week? The greens were so soft that many full shots either spun back to the lower level or completely off the green. Less than full shots tended to end up closer on the 3rd esp. when the pin was further back on the green.

I haven't created a new account since my IBM access was disabled a couple years ago, so I don't have access to the advance analytics on the app, but I would venture the scoring average for those tee shots that ended up <50 yds of the putting surface was noticeably lower esp. since the risk for driving it up in that area doesn't seem to be that high.
« Last Edit: April 10, 2023, 01:29:40 PM by Anthony Butler »
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Anthony Gholz

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #11 on: April 10, 2023, 01:00:43 PM »
I just looked at the "original" plan signed by Mac and put out on the Masters.com website.  The 3rd (12th) has a single large fairway bunker in the approximate location of today's JN bunkers.


Anthony

V. Kmetz

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2023, 11:19:23 AM »
I think it's a great hole;


I think it provokes the Masters competitors to make strategy decisions and finessed shots, and provides us TV viewers with an entertaining and real provoker of visible player strategy with consequence.  Although some would say Mac and Jones were thinking of it as a second nine twelfth hole, it fits in perfectly with the tournament routing as the 3rd and the matched pair with #2 as a place you're looking to make early hay surrounded by the rigors/few birdie holes of #1 and #s 4-7....in that way it's really one essence of this ANGC Masters course -- the pressure to make low scores on the holes that are "more" available to do so...the par 5s...along with this hole and #16... having to navigate a tough par or not on this hole, if you haven't made a 3 or 4 on #2 ratchets up the competitive stress, the narrative of the round or perhaps the tournament on Sunday.


For me, Rahm's 3 here to Koepka's 4 from a closer drive was the beginning of the competitive narrative which saw Rahm shoot 69 and Koepka 75.


But also, I think this probably a pretty fun/interesting hole to tackle for day-in day out non-Masters play...it prospects to work as a well-designed model of a good golf hole, that's conceived from an interesting green site backward.  For the 99% of people for whom all Golf architecture is made, that fairway bunker array is a sticky thing and 230 - 275 is just the zone a lot of those 99% would be finding their tee shots...those everyday players who CAN clear uphill 280 often do not have the in-close hands like pros and that 50-80 yard shot is a monster.
"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." -

Keith Williams

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2023, 11:45:15 AM »
I think it is absolutely a great hole, perhaps even better with the current distance that the ball travels.


It is rare to find a hole that short that causes such mental consternation amongst the pros.

Max Prokopy

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2023, 06:41:56 PM »
I expect it's a great hole, but I'd be happy to confirm that in person  ;)

jim_lewis

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #15 on: April 12, 2023, 04:50:42 PM »
Those fairway bunkers certainly do come in play for most members. There has always been a bunker in that general location, at least as far back as I can remember (1965). Until a couple of decades or so ago the bunkers came in play for the pros. Until Daly came along, very few pros tried to carry them. In fact, there was a crosswalk for pedestrians short of the green. I think it was Hale Irwin who shot himself out of the lead when he buried a tee shot in the face of one of the bunkers.
I am not a fan of trees but the trees on the right are the only protection from hitting the tee shot up the right side which keeps the ball from running down in the low area short of the green.


I object to including this as a "short par 4" since I don't recall anyone actually reaching the surface of the green.
"Crusty"  Jim
Freelance Curmudgeon

Cal Carlisle

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #16 on: April 12, 2023, 07:03:53 PM »
I think the hole is a nice transition between the easiest hole on the course to what ends up being a 3-4 hole tightrope (holes 4 -7). I like the idea of it as a good match play hole. A long hitter and short game whiz would both be able to duke it out. Is it a "great hole"? I don't so, but is an excercise knowing what kind of approach distance you can absolutely knock down.

Tom_Doak

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #17 on: April 12, 2023, 09:37:32 PM »

I object to including this as a "short par 4" since I don't recall anyone actually reaching the surface of the green.


Not every short par 4 is drivable!


IIRC, since Augusta lengthened the 7th hole, the 3rd is the only par-4 on the course that's less than 440 or 450 yards  :o

Kalen Braley

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #18 on: April 12, 2023, 09:44:09 PM »

I object to including this as a "short par 4" since I don't recall anyone actually reaching the surface of the green.

Not every short par 4 is drivable!

IIRC, since Augusta lengthened the 7th hole, the 3rd is the only par-4 on the course that's less than 440 or 450 yards  :o

Tom I was shocked when i first saw this, but yes all the other masters par 4s are 440+

Do they make up for it with 3 easily reached par 5s and 3 relatively short par 3s?

Tom_Doak

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #19 on: April 12, 2023, 10:04:08 PM »

I object to including this as a "short par 4" since I don't recall anyone actually reaching the surface of the green.

Not every short par 4 is drivable!

IIRC, since Augusta lengthened the 7th hole, the 3rd is the only par-4 on the course that's less than 440 or 450 yards  :o

Tom I was shocked when i first saw this, but yes all the other masters par 4s are 440+

Do they make up for it with 3 easily reached par 5s and 3 relatively short par 3s?


They "make up for it" by inviting guys who carry their driver 310.

Carl Rogers

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #20 on: April 12, 2023, 10:16:32 PM »
IMO hole 14 was more interesting when shorter and the pros could choose the length of the approach by the choice of tee shot club.
I decline to accept the end of man. ... William Faulkner

Chip Gaskins

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #21 on: April 12, 2023, 11:40:22 PM »


The layup leaves 135-140 yards and driving them (who can't carry 277 on the tour these days?) leaves < 100 yards, which is clearly the easier leave for most pin positions.  Basically, those bunkers take away any real option off of the tee and could be rethought in light of the current game.


I think that was the whole idea . . . the bunkers were built in the age when guys wanted to lay up to 100 yards so they could spin a full wedge shot to stop their approach shots, before the 60-degree wedge became popular.  They are kind of in the wrong place now for the way top players attack a golf hole.  If they were 40-50 yards from the green guys would be much more afraid to take driver, but that might be less interesting, too.  Maybe MacKenzie was right not to have any fairway bunkers?

jim_lewis

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Re: Is #3 at Augusta a great hole?
« Reply #22 on: April 13, 2023, 09:21:46 PM »
Tom:


The hole most mentioned as the world's great drivable par 4 is #10 at Riviera, and it is certainly drivable. My memory is failing me these days, but
I don't recall any short par 4s that are not drivable. I am sure you can remind me or a few. Maybe #3 at Pinehurst #2 is an example. I don't recall many pros driving it.


I thought the definition of a good short 4 was one that could be driven but at significant risk. No?
"Crusty"  Jim
Freelance Curmudgeon

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