The first Hole is an uphill straight hole that plays longer that it measures, but with little trouble around the green. If your drive reaches over the ridge and avoids the trees on the right, then you are in good shape. Be aware that a drive left onto the practice ground is out of bounds. The second shot will always require more club than the yardage suggests. Providing you keep clear of the trees on either side of the approach and if you don’t reach the green you will be left with a relatively easy chip. The green has a deceiving slope front to back and a five is always a satisfying score.
This hole is a difficult and long hole coming so early in the round. It is regarded as the second hardest hole, so don’t expect a par on a regular basis unless you are a low handicapper. With this in mind set your store out to get a bogey and be delighted if you get a par. The tee shot doesn’t have to be long as most players will need to play their second shot short of the cross bunker which is 50 yards in front of the green. Assuming you are just short of the cross bunker a reasonable pitch with a short/medium iron should leave you with no more than a 25ft putt, which should hopefully mean 2 putts for a bogey.
The third hole is fairly short uphill par four. The longer drivers can reach the green but if in doubt it’s safer to play short of the three fairway bunkers, leaving a carefully played pitch or chip to a left to right sloping green. The slope and undulation of the green means that no putt, however short, is flat.
The 4th Hole is again fairly short but downhill all the way, including the green. The hole is a very slight dogleg to the right, so typically a drive to the left gives a better approach to the green, as the trees on the right will result in a chip out. The cross bunkers shouldn’t come into play, but certainly the greenside bunkers are there to catch an errant approach shot. There is out of bounds to the left of the fairway and in the stream beyond the green.
The fifth is a strong par five where a reasonable tee shot aimed at the right side of the fairway, will, due to the natural lie of the land, fall to the left. The second (blind) shot also will tend to roll right to left. The third shot would need to carry the cross bunker approximately 40yards short of the green if you are to reach the green in regulation. If in doubt it’s best to play short of the cross bunker and chip to centre of the green as the two greenside bunkers will catch any wayward approach shot.
The 6th Hole is a medium length par 3, flat and straight with out of bounds to the left. Greenside bunkers both left and right will catch any wayward shot and the open aspects and wind will influence your club choice.
This hole is a fairly short par 5 with out of bounds all along the left. If your drive finds the fairway then a well placed second between the gap in the bushes and short of the fairway cross bunker will leave an uphill approach with a short or medium iron to a green guarded by two bunkers. The green slopes from back to front so it can pay to be short of the pin to have an uphill put.
The eighth hole is the shortest hole on the course, but with the out of bounds close to the left and two bunkers guarding the heavily contoured green it is no easy birdie.
The 9th is downhill to a large lake short of the green, with out of bounds to the left all the way. Be aware that the trees on the right will catch any left to right drive normally requiring a chip out and an automatic dropped shot. A good drive will leave a medium/long iron to a receptive but large green.
An uphill par 4 which always plays longer than it is, greets you at the 10th. The drive has to be threaded through the wide gap in the fairway bushes, leaving an uphill shot to a two tier green with greenside bunkers. You will have to club up considerably to reach the green in two.
The 11th hole is a test for any golfer. For 95% of golfers this hole should be played as a short par 5, by keeping the ball in play, no heroics. The church tower in the distance is a good line for the drive. Unless your drive leaves you in range of the green, the second shot should be played short of the fairway bunker, leaving a mid iron to the green. However you decide to play this hole remember it penalises any poor shot heavily, so if you take a 5 or 6 do not be concerned as nearly everyone will do the same.
The 12th is interesting mainly because the varying pin positions that the green shape allows. It is particularly challenging off the mens white tees as the green is quite narrow and well guarded by bunkers. The green also lies slightly across the line of play and has some deceptive slopes.
Hole 13 is a dog leg par four that calls for a good tee shot to find the fairway. Dependent on the drive’s ball position will determine how much of the green you can see. There are well positioned fairway bunkers and trees that will come into pay for the wayward drive. An accurate second shot is required to find the green and there are severe penalties for being wayward with your approach.
Hole fourteen is a par five where a reasonable drive is needed to carry over a dip in the fairway. Once over the carry, two good shots should get you near or on the green. The approach to the green has a well positioned bunker to the right and the green has two tiers, which is a test of putting.
Although the three short holes on the back nine are all of similar length, all have a different character. The elevated green provides a good view of the fifteenth green but the pin position coupled with the wind direction will have a big effect on club choice. If you play your tee shot for the middle of the green you should not be too far away from the pin, however once you are on the putting surface you still have to consider the slope and line carefully to achieve a par.
The sixteenth is a really tough test made harder by the recent addition of a drainage ditch positioned laterally across the fairway which comes into play on your second shot. The tee shot must favour the right hand side of the fairway as going left could be a lost ball. The second shot most probably will need to be played short of the hidden ditch, leaving just a short pitch onto the receptive green. If you feel confident to go for the green with your second remember to favour right of the green due to the lay of the land. Just keep away from the rough and water on the left and bogey or even a par is possible on this tricky hole.
With water in front and to the left of the green and bunkers guarding the right, this par 3 demands an accurate tee shot. Again with the elevated tee position the wind conditions will make club selection difficult to judge, but very satisfying when you make the green.
Finally the eighteenth, a good finish– a dog leg over water. With a straight tee shot over the right hand corner of the water, the second shot has to skirt a small pond to the left and two fairway bunkers to the right. The tiered green is best approached from the right hand side thus avoiding a well positioned bunker on the left hand side. A par on his hole is a good score.