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tightdraw

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  • Handicap:
    7
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    MY GOLF SPY
  1. some quick responses to the comments. First, anyone nearby who would like to play should contact me through private messaging. In my experience it is the second best Macdonald course behind National. It is also a Raynor design and it is his second best effort after Fisher's Island. The course is much better maintained but it is not maintained at the level warranted by its design. To be fair it is also a very hard course to maintain well. First, the bunkers are old style and cannot be maintained by machines. In the past, the rough was brutal, but it is mowed now and playable. The greens would need major work on the substructure and then be rebuilt to be championship level. Drainage is always a problem on the lower lying holes. So what you have now is a course whose design is among the best in the US, a layout that is exceptional, maintained to the level of a good public course. On the other hand, for the design to be fully realized the course would have to be maintained, not just better, but in keeping with the design intention which is something altogether different and harder. it is a treasure that is not fully realized, but playing it with an eye to the underlying majesty of the design is something whose value to a golf enthusiast with an interest in architecture is immense As to the comments: it is not a hard course like the Ocean Course is; or like Bethpage Black is now. I doubt I could break 90 at the Ocean Course, whereas a single digit handicapper with some familiarity with the course should regularly score in the mid to upper 70s at Yale. Scoring better than mid 70s, however, is another matter altogether! Under par, much more difficult still. A long hitter (I have never been) would have had to play 3wds and driving irons on many holes to stay safely in play on a risk/reward calculus in the old days, but now he or she could overwhelm many of theholes without fear. A short hitter will find the course very difficult, but still very playable. Everyone will find it memorable. It is the exact opposite of Bellerive in this regard. Great PGA event; name a memorable hole. I've played it. It is a boring golf course, and almost entirely without visual or architectural interest. That said, Bellerive is much more of a test for the pros than Yale would be.That's the way it is with most classic designs. The split fairway is the 18th where one can choose the upper or lower fairway: upper to the left; lower to the right -- both come into play only after the drive, which from the back tee has to carry at least 220 yards to the left or 240 to theright side of the fairway over a mound that encompasses the entire fairway and goes from 20yds wide at its narrowest to 45 at its widest. Hitting into the mound means you will not find your ball. Period. You have to carry 290 or more to get on the second flat spot that will allow you dream of hitting the green in two. YOu won't get rollout at 290 or so since after about 310 it is straightup hill for the next 150 yards. BUT you can drive to the right and play the lower fairway which is level from about 300 to 475. In the old days, clubs wouldn't allow you to hit the ball far enough to reach the flat plateau of the lower fairway on your drive. And if you could your path would be excruciatingly narrow as the area between the lower and higher fiairways was entirely dense foot high rough and the right side of the lower fairway would be protected by a veritable forest. I am sure the likes of Dustin Johnson and Bruce Koepke would play to the right with less fear as the rough is mowed and thus presents a different challenge: a stance that rules out going for the green in two: not a lost ball or an unplayable lie. The big swail referred to in the comments is the defining characteristic of a Biarritz hole. Legend has it that Sam Snead's shot landed on the front part of the green to a pin placement back right. It is impossible to putt close to a back right pin from anywhere on the front, so he hit a wedge from the front to the back. He did not take kindly to being criticized for gouging a hole in the green; and is reputed to have responded to such criticism by complaining that if the architect was stupid enough to build a hole likke that then he had every right to be stupid enough to play a wedge from one part of the green to another.
  2. Thought I would say a bit about my home course for the past 35+ years. The YGC is a classic design, the handywork of CB Macdonald, Seth Raynor and Charlie Banks, though Macdonald is usually given most of the credit for it. I have played nearly all of the courses attributed to Macdonald, including National Golf Links, Piping Rock, Mid Ocean, St. Louis CC and more. As far as layout goes, only the National is Yale's equal, and the National bests YGC on other dimensions, including naturalness, and captivating beauty. Routing is not Macdonald's greatest forte, but Yale is an exception. Yale is also a more intimidating and rugged layout. Many golf courses are eminently forgettable; few are memorable. Of the memorable ones, few are memorable because the holes taken in groupings of 3 make incredible sense, not just individually but in relationship to one another; and their is a continuity among the holes overall that is nearly unequaled in my experience -- which is substantial but by no means the equal of many others on this or other forums. Many modern masterpieces are like playing golf constructed out of a series of holes designed to grace calendars, not to make a lasting impression on a golfer. The topography of the course is one of its strongest attributes. It is very hilly, but not artificially so. There is a balance between the up and downhill holes, just as there is between those that play into the prevailing winds and those that play with it. There is a spring wind and a summer wind and they differ. From the black tees the course plays close to 6800 yards, but it is nearly impossible to play at that length because unless you know where to find the real tee on #18, you will not be able to play the hole to its distance of 621 yds. The par is 70. When I first began playing the course as a student many years ago, the course was poorly maintained which made it penalizing beyond what was acceptable. The rough was deep and unkempt; the bunkers guarding the greens unplayable and worse the steep slopes of rough between green and bunkers -- which are in some cases 10=15 yards below green level -- absolutely unbearable. A wayward iron that falls a bit short and to the left of the second hole for example would land between the green and bunker, never trickle into the bunker and would be unlikely to be found. I had grown up playing Bethpage Black in tournaments and it was also poorly maintained. It's a tougher track but considerably less enjoyable and strategic. It's a brute. Bethpage reflects only some of the Tilinghast DNA -- to my mind his courses with the exception of Quaker Ridge are very 'manly'- Bethpage is decidedly so. Macdonald's courses have a feminine dimension; they are seductive and much be approached with care. It has taken many years for the groundskeeping at Yale to allow the course to reflect this feature. The highlight holes for me in order of seductiveness are the 10th, 8th, 12th, 17th, 4th. The signature hole is the Biarritz 9th. I think the hole is uneven in that if the pin is on back center or back right it is a great and very difficult hole. It is a very good hole with the pin front right, but other pin placements reduce the interest of the hole. The 13th is the Redan and it has been mistakenly redesigned adding a stretch of green in the front that goes against the Redan design. The two other par 3s are good but not great. The greens on the 7th, 8th, 10th, 12th and 17th are spectacularly good in design. The 1st, 2nd, 4th,14th (Knoll), 15th are very strong; the 3rd keeps the hole from being a classic; the 5th would benefit from being narrowed; the 6th would benefit from protection in front; the 16th is too large for a short par 5; and the 18th provides no challenge of interest, which makes a certain amount of sense after the long trek up and down the mountainous 600yarder. If you are not finished by the time you reach the 18th, the hole will finish you. To me it is out of character with the rest of the course. There is no fairway roll on drives; the course plays its distance. It was not designed to play this way. It was designed to play fast and to have large, fast greens, but the drainage is only adequate and makes the fairways play long and soft and the greens relatively slow. I have taken over 100 people over the years to play the course and eveyone leaves takken by the beauty, difficulty and brilliance of the design and its execution. Narrow the fairways, lengthen the rough, lengthen a few holes, add a few bunkers in strategic places, reduce play for a year to get the greens suitable for speed (for a short period of a week), and put the pins in their more difficult locations, and you have a golf course that would be a challenge for the best players in the world. Best news, as both an alum and a retired faculty member, I can help arrange for others to play the course.
  3. Wonderful opportunity -- played the PTX when they first came out Jules -- New York City and CT Older than Hogan Company -- 71 Index 7.7 Current Irons -- Srixon 565/765 combo 4i-7i/8i-PW -- recoil R flex shafts Fourteen Wedges RM 21 54 58 / KBS wedge shafts Thank you for the opportunity
  4. Jules NYC/CT 7.0 Launcher driver; 4wd; 4 hybrid; 5-PW CBX; RTX 3.0 wedges -- 50/55/60 2135 Satin Elevado -- oversize grip Srixon Q star Tour white
  5. Jules / CT and New York Directed Force 35" 78*lie angle Black 3T Thanks
  6. Jules New York City/ New Haven, CT Currently have three hybrids i play depending on circumstance 1. Tour Edge EX10 with Recoil F4 --19* 2. Cobra F6 3/4 hybrid with Red Tie stiff 3. Adams XTD Ti/ 3 and 4 hybrids --red tie stiff Like the head of the Tour edge best, but recoil is not consistent performer Adams has well made heads but shafts in both Adams and Cobra are less than optimally consistent. At 70 yrs old, when I play long courses -- 6700-7000 I am hitting a lot of hybrids into the green and need to hold greens and fly bunkers, etc. ON shorter courses, I use hybrid off some tees. So I need hybrids I can control like I control my iron flight. I have been fit for every other shaft in my bag but for hybrid, so I am ready willing and able. Loved KBS in my former Apex Pro irons. Have a fitter who can set up shafts optimally for me. Thnx.
  7. Jules Hamden, CT/NYC, NY Miura Genesis Passing Point/Padeson shafs 5-PW
  8. Jules C Handicap 7 Driver Swing Speed: 86-88 Carry Distance 205-215 depending on smash factor on any particular day F7+ Would love to swing faster, but approaching 70yrs old and there are natural limits I am trying to overcome through Pilates (latest effort); still play from the blues and blacks and that accounts for handicap. Spent most of my life as golfer -- since 12 yrs old -- playing competitively and am obviously in denial about my age -- though a handicap 7 or more strokes higher than it had been for 30+ years makes denial ever more difficult
  9. TIGHTDRAW Hamden, CT/NY, NY Strength: good hands and creativity Weakness: distance control from 40yds in, especially in bunkers Play the new Miura Genesis irons that are phenomenal and Harry Taylor custom wedges that are very good but a bit on the 'one size fits all' theory -- given size of the company and looking for more precise fit to my game
  10. Jules C, NYC and CT HDCP 6 Dream Srixon/Cleveland Set I'll know it when I get fitted for it! The ideal set for me is the one that the experts fit me for. How could it be otherwise. Thanks for your consideration
  11. Jules Coleman, 8 Connecticut Hogan VKTR 19, 23 Regular/graphite Currently play FT Hi, 27, 31; FT 15, 36,40,44,48 Ping Answer 52,56,60 wedges Adams XTD Ti 20, 23 Srixon F45, 15 Cobra F6+/ Talamonti light (55g shaft) Only thing unsettled in my set is hybrids and deciding whether to go route of FTHi lower lofted irons or VKTR hybrids. In past year I have tried Adams, Srixon, Bridgestone, Callaway and TaylorMade Hybrids and what I would prefer would be hybrids that are replacements for comparable irons rather than an unstable cross between a shorter fairway wood and an iron that perfroms like neither.
  12. Jules Coleman NYC, CT 7.8 bag the FT15 now in a good position to compare
  13. Jules Coleman Index. 7.8 New York, New York I play the Hogan FT 15 right now and was actually thinking of replacing the 24, 28 and 32* irons with the FT 15 Hi precisely because of the claims about added forgiveness and launch. I think I therefore make a naturally good tester as I know well the feel and performance of the standard FT15 and can assess the relative improvements if any in forgiveness and launch angle the Hi make. In addition, my back-up set of irons includes some hollow long irons, so I can usefully compare the Hogan hollow design with the others I currently have. I am also in a good position to judge the aesthetic flow between the standard and the Hi as well as the precision of the loft substitutions. Beyond that, I am a professional writer, so my review is likely to be readable. Thanks for your consideration
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