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Golf: Turnberry or Carnasty?

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Stan Sutherland
Stan Sutherland

“Colin Montgomerie is still firmly in the Carnoustie camp, insisting “this is the best of the nine courses on The Open rota with no weak hole out there”. But Tom Watson, the man who has a strong affinity with the Angus venue after making a winning Open Championship debut there, has had his eye turned by the “new Turnberry”.

Turnberry is tougher now

Martin Dempster’s Colin Montgomerie/Carnoustie comments comes under his headline, “New’ Turnberry shoots to top of Tom Watson’s Open venues,” and he also includes the following remarks from Tom Watson.
“They have added beauty and length to it. One of the knocks on Turnberry in the past was it was too short. In a sense, it was. Do you know the total yardage of the golf course now? 7,489. And that’s on seaside winds. It can never be called too short now. They’ve built tees that you won’t use unless the wind is a factor. It can be played in any wind and still be a very challenging golf course for the Open Championship.”

America versus Angus
Geoff Shackelford courtesy of the Donald had the opportunity to play the revamped Turnberry and Geoff writes, “Turnberry makes no apologies for being an Americanized version of an authentic links. Trump added the same 10 foot wide ryegrass walkways that he insisted on through the dunes at Trump International in Aberdeen. While perhaps too clean and carpet-like for most, they do add an elegance to walks as your approach Ebert’s square tee boxes (which fight the landscape a bit).”

On the other side of Scotland and not across the pond there’s Carnoustie in Angus where they’ve just finished playing the Senior Open Championship and I’m thinking, “Which course would I play given that I could only play one of them?”

For sure I’d love to play what Geoff describes as, “Turnberry’s dramatically revamped 9th, 10th, and 11th holes are comparable to the best trifectas in golf: Pebble Beach (7th-8th-9th), Cypress Point (15th-16th-17th) or Augusta National (11th-12th-13th).” However I’m going for Carnoustie’s 16, 17 and 18 and also playing the famous “Hogan’s Alley”.
Just like the Old Course, Carnoustie has a sense of history that Turnberry has yet to match.

Link to Martin Dempster and Geoff Shackelford

Quote of the Day
“I don’t like the glamour. I just like the game.” – Ben Hogan as recorded on the plaque at “Hogan’s Alley” Carnoustie.


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