Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Putting the Clubs Away for '09?

Canada celebrated Thanksgiving this past Monday, giving us crazy golfers in the Great White North an extra day to play this weekend.

Despite early morning temperatures hovering around 6 degrees celsius, I played both Saturday and Monday. Saturday was supposed to be "Pic's Revenge", with Pic being our course superintendant and it's his opportunity to set the golf course up as ridiculously difficult as possible.

It's always a fun round of golf but heavy rains on Friday night meant that despite the pins being set up properly for Pic's Revenge, the actual event wouldn't take place until Sunday (they couldn't double cut and roll the greens on Saturday).

The pin positions were extremely tough, with some of them being two steps from the collar and many were right on the middle of slopes but I made four birdies in my round on Saturday. However, I also made about five doubles and shot an uninspiring 83 on the day.

I followed it up with a much better round on Monday, shooting a 77 (+5) and won some money in skins, Hollywoods and in my match with Cal.

That might just be my last round for 2009, as our club is finally going through with the fall aeration this week and it will be a doozy. The greens will likely be in rough shape for at least two or three weeks and by the time they are semi-respectable, we'll likely have seen our first snowfall of the year. Golf club storage at St. Catharines GCC also ended this weekend, as the club begins the annual process of installing the curling rink.

If I get the chance to play elsewhere in October, I might play once or twice more. I was hoping to finally get the chance to play St. Georges, Hamilton or The National this year but it looks like I'm going to be disappointed once again. One of these years...

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Golf Blog 100

As you likely know by now, I'm pretty infatuated with great golf architecture. While I haven't necessarily set a goal of playing the top 100 courses in Canada, the US or the world, I certainly look forward to the chance of seeing and playing as many of them as possible.

There are many lists out there by top publications: which one is best? Golf Digest? Golf Magazine? Maybe it's GolfWeek...who knows...

Each of these magazines have a system and it seems all have their critics.

Well, now there is another list and it may be the best one yet...

Golf Blog 100 is a labour of love from Jim Colton of Wegoblogger #31 fame. The initial Golf Blog 100 list, the 2009 Top 100 Courses in the USA is "a collaborative ratings effort by the top golf bloggers on the Internet": Jim's words, not mine.

I say that because I'm on the panel! :)

We were asked to rate golf courses that we've played from a list of 540 eligible courses around the world. There was no set criteria or scale, allowing us to evaluate golf courses in our own way. The final ranking is "the result of a sophisticated modeling technique that ensures that the output is the best representation of the collective view of the panelists."

Check out the link above to see the initial list - Jim also plans on doing a Top 100 World rating in addition to a Top 100 Public Course rating, both in the near future. The cool thing about the site is that Jim has links to writeups on each course from each of the bloggers who have written about their experiences after playing. So my reviews of Oakmont, Riviera and Princeville are all linked on this site.

My contributions are obviously quite limited compared to my well-travelled 'peers' in the blogosphere (I think I have played only about 12 of the 540 eligible courses) but I must say I feel honoured to have been asked to contribute.

It's a great resource and anyone who loves these types of lists should check out the site when you get the chance!