Month: January 2018

Wild Horse — Little Course on the Prairie

Wild Horse — Little Course on the Prairie

In almost all cases golf courses are a jarring abstraction against their environment. No matter how evolved they may appear, there’s nothing natural about their shapes, their presence or their reason for being. Golf as we know it does not appear accidentally in any ecosystem. They are not random mutations but rather invasive species. But…

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Augusta Country Club, Taking Shade

Augusta Country Club, Taking Shade

The topic of how courses are judged in comparison to their neighbors comes up quite a bit here. Often it’s fair to make assessments about a property based on other proximate courses, but sometimes looking left and right instead of straight ahead makes for lazy analysis. In the case of Augusta Country Club, however, there’s just no way around it.…

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The Synchronicity of the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island

The Synchronicity of the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island

One of my favorite stories of Pete Dye involves the construction of the Ocean Course in 1989. Hurricane Hugo had just come aground at Kiawah Island and Charleston, upturning everything he’d built to that point. With the site razed and most of the coast evacuated, Dye ventured out alone and began reshaping the course, pushing up dunes and moving the holes out…

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Episode 10: Robert Trent Jones II

Episode 10: Robert Trent Jones II

Nobody’s roots stretch deeper into the field of golf architecture than Robert Trent Jones II’s. Oldest son of Robert Trent Jones and now in his sixth decade of design, he’s been literally almost everywhere, seen everything and been a prominent voice the industry his entire life. After some light banter about fatalism and nuclear bombs,…

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Upcoming: Robert Trent Jones II

Upcoming: Robert Trent Jones II

Had a lively and entertaining conversation tonight with Robert Trent Jones II, discussing topics like the opening of Hogs Head near Waterville in Ireland, the reception of Chambers Bay during the U.S. Open and the enduring legacy of his father. Look for the podcast to go live this weekend. Please follow and like us:

Holding On To Holston Hills

Holding On To Holston Hills

Holston Hills has the reputation of being a Donald Ross course that time forgot because so little has supposedly changed over the years. The story is that the club, increasingly located on the “wrong” side of Knoxville and challenged to hold onto members, never had the money to unwittingly hire an architect to come in and modernize the course,…

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Episode 9: Rod Whitman

Episode 9: Rod Whitman

Rod Whitman has been one of golf’s masters of construction for nearly 40 years and has designed a number of courses on his own. In 2010 he got the call every architect dreams of — an offer to design and build a course on one of the world’s great new seaside properties, in this case…

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Showdown: We-Ko-Pa vs. Talking Stick

Showdown: We-Ko-Pa vs. Talking Stick

One of the reasons Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw’s golf courses are held in such high regard—by architectural cognoscenti, by magazine ranking panels and international developers—is that they’re so often, so obviously, brilliant. The pretext is that they’ve been hired to construct courses on some of the greatest sites made available in the last 40 years. But when they get there, they…

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Upcoming Feed the Ball Podcast: Rod Whitman

Upcoming Feed the Ball Podcast: Rod Whitman

Will be speaking shortly with Rod Whitman, the designer behind the highly-lauded Cabot Links course on Canada’s Cape Breton Island (rated no. 43 and no. 96 in the world by Golf Digest and Golf Magazine, respectively). Keep an eye out toward the end of the week for when the podcast goes live. Please follow and like…

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Irrepressible Lawsonia Links

Irrepressible Lawsonia Links

Suddenly, Wisconsin has become a powerhouse golf destination, at least as unlikely a place for extraordinary public play as Nebraska has become. The state hit the big stage in 1988 when Pete Dye built Blackwolf Run’s original 18 at Destination Kohler. That begat another 18 holes and, several years later, 36 more for the resort at Whistling Straits, including the famous Straits Course on bluffs…

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