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What Makes A Successful Golf Course? BY Tony Cashmore

I was asked recently – ’What makes a golf course successful?’ The questioner was deliberately not talking about location, or the course’s operations, or financial return on investment, or the value of real estate assisting the’success’ of the venue. Nothing like that. Rather, what are the intrinsic qualities in one golf course which add up to something golfers consider’successful’, whilst another course, perhaps close by, perhaps on similar terrain, has the reputation that it somehow fails? Is’successful’ the right word anyway? I mentioned that the course is to be regarded as successful by golfers. Maybe that lets out all those good souls, perhaps non-golfers, who might look at the trees, and mown areas of green grass, and ducks on ponds, and say “how beautiful!” So, beauty of the venue may not be one of the ’intrinsic qualities’ regarded as essential for success? You see? The question may be harder to answer than it initially appears. And who are ’golfers’ anyway? A guy on a scratch handicap has an utterly different set of standards in judging the success of a golf course than, say, two mates who loyally play at the one venue every Saturday, rain or shine, because it succeeds, it satisfies them constantly; or the four girls who love, say Ivanhoe Golf Course, because the golf is fun, and manageable for them on that little course, so they succeed in their limited golf aspirations, and play there regu-

larly. So, can a golf course be all things to all people? Is that part of why’success’ of a golf course (outside of financial success) is so elusive to define? And does it need to be an overall satisfying journey for everyone anyway? Well here are some comments on this, and I’d relish input from golfers of all skill and strength levels, to get at this vexed question. Firstly, let’s do away with the need for satisfactory financial returns from a golf course’s operations. That’s a different criterion. We all know golf courses, or golf venues which we as golfers believe to be’successful’ from all manner of golf analysis, but which may not have financial returns which make for viability, perhaps now, perhaps into the future. No, I don’t intend to name some here, for obvious reasons; they exist, and undoubtedly give golfing pleasure to some, but may still be hanging on by the skin of their teeth from a ’financial success’ viewpoint. Similarly, there are venues, private clubs, or resort courses, which perhaps many of us think of as golfingly boring, or unnatural, or compromised by any number of things – trees, water, a proliferation of unnecessary bunkers etc, which continue however to be financially secure, with strong patronage levels year-round, and regarded by the industry as successful. So. Many architects down the

years have stipulated, using all sorts of formats, that a golf course must give maximum pleasure to the maximum number of players, no matter what their skill and strength levels might be. Let me question that sort of statement immediately (acting as devil’s advocate, let it be noted for the record, because I’ve said the same thing at critical moments)! Here’s a statement:“A golf course, to be successful, must give continuing golfing joy, stimulation and satisfaction to the players for whom it was/is intended.” For example, there are a dozen courses I could name like Ivanhoe Public Course, cramped into a small (but picturesque) site, with many very short par-4’s, notional par-5’s only, which certainly would never attract strong players. They avoid the venue, or if they live close by, and think of playing after a liquid Sunday lunch, they intentionally try to brutalize the little course, with golf balls going wildly astray to the discomfort of everyone else, and perhaps neighbors too. Not therefore for the entire or maximum golf market as the pundits proclaim is necessary, and not successful at all for good strong golfers. Or, as a corollary, there are a several golf courses around Australia set in glorious terrain, sometimes with stagger-

December 12, 2012 Ladies Golf Association. ingly beautiful coastal character, where careful design has formed golf journeys there which are challenging, stimulating, especially for strong and skillful players. Yes, there is the risk of losing balls, often in close-by deep rough which the designers apparently see as visually necessary to cloak the experience, and the challenges, hole after hole may browbeat many lesser players into submission, but excellent promotion work still puts such venues up very high in ’ratings’. My personal view is that constantly losing golf balls in deep rough adjacent to fairways is simply wrong, particularly when strong wind is a constant companion to the golf. So, is one of the ’intrinsic qualities’ golfers find necessary for holding a golf course as successful, that you don’t lose balls constantly, due to course design character, site limitations, or sheer abrogation of maintenance requirements? Does the ’inevitable’ losing of golf balls militate sufficiently against the enjoyment that most players will eventually spurn such a course? I think this has some merit. Does the course seem to play easier than it looks from the tees – a maxim of success for several great architects of the early 20th century? …*

…* Story continues online at:

January 2013

Pictured on front row l-r Dianne Wells. Shirley Warrick,

Glenda Locklar, Sylvia Hudson, Debbie Hargrove, Arlene Davis, Sue Sherwood, Merilyn Dwornik. Back Row l-r Jennifer Ventress, Jo Rape, Shaye Prather, Alice Mullen, Barbara Starling, Dianne Fergurson, Dianne Mills, Jean Lunsford, Carla Guthrie, Margarette Hughes, Mary Beth Welch, Ginger Rodgers, Natalie,Sutter

issue 11 Volume 1


Adjusting Your Golf Swing for Weather By Tom Ward, PGA Tour Instructor

Cold air is heavy, therefore it creates more resistance to the flight of the ball. Cold, heavier winds naturally encourage golfers to swing harder, which will create more errors.

relaxed and the elbow gently tucked. From this position, the right allows the left to control the takeaway. Remember the left leads, and the right follows.

It will cause you to be out of position through impact, allowing your right side to dominate (for right golfers) at the inappropriate time. By having a more reckless swing to counteract the cooler weather, this action will move your right arm and shoulder out of the desired position. This will force the club head to approach the ball in a too steep angle. In golf talk: "coming over the top of the ball."

A very common error is that the right shoulder is too high through the hitting area. A simple, quick fix is to not allow your right shoulder to pass the ball. This will encourage you to come into the ball with more of an uppercut type blow (much like a boxer), as opposed to a roundhouse spinning motion that is too hard to time up consistently.

Because of the colder temperatures, all players should gear their swings to produce a lower trajectory to the flight of the ball. To accomplish this, the swing plane (path that the club travels) should be in a shallower arc. This will allow the club head to contact the ball properly. Also, play the ball slightly back in your stance. One of the essential keys is to have your shoulders set up correctly at address. Having your shoulders in the proper position will encourage good shoulder motion throughout your swing. In the set-up (starting position), the right shoulder should be slightly lower than the left, with the right arm

Fall Wine Dinner

The club’s fall member-guest wine dinner was a success. We had 32 reservations. Everyone enjoyed a delicious meal paired with some great wines. The wine dinner is held each November the Tuesday before Thanksgiving.

Also, when you're out there playing in this colder weather, protect your head, feet and hands. Try to keep your golf balls warm as well. Taking care of your equipment and yourself will make playing the game more enjoyable during this brief period of colder weather. Golf Tips: Golf Tips - Adjusting Your Golf Swing For Cold Weather

Annual Cost of Living adjustment will appear on this January dues invoice.

Ladies Lunch Association

The ladies had a fantastic group for their member-guest luncheon. They enjoyed fellowship with friends and enjoyed a wonderful lunch.


January Birthdays & Anniversaries


Look in the mail for your Happy Birthday Discount Postcard.

Steven Morelock Jacob Rowell Janice Powers Rebecca Farrar Warren Kelley Frieda Pinckard Camden Mosely John McKeller Jan Sullivan Buddy Hargrove Crystal Sherwood William Davis Thomas Graning Jack Waller Kathryn Kelly David Hicks Steve Haug Vince Ballard Sharla Wilkes Joyce Conrad Jeffrey Knight Kyle Scott

Mitchell Harris Eulane Jones Bill Jackson Charlotte Kreis Stewart Pinckard Jay Johnson Beth Holley Mallory May Beppie Watkins Ford Hussey Jane Corley Ann Morgan John Green Christopher Campbell Gary Guthrie Kori Anderson Jean Lunsford Troy Hudson Kala Rolling Jim Scott

President V-President Sec./Tres. Board

Manager Accountant Golf Chef Admin. Asst.

Happy Anniversary!

Hunter & Emily Rolling Norman & Jo Rape Bob & Dianne Mills Jim & Joy Lunsford Joey & Beth Holey

Marcus Paramore Scott Baker Alton Starling Doug Kitchens Michelle Armstrong Max Davis Dianne Mills Matt Baker Derek Wilkes Jack Rainey Mark Knotts Scott McNaughton Heath DeRamus Alton Starling Tony Mitchell Joseph Pullen Christine Haug

David & Brenda Hicks Larry & Janice Blakeney

January Monday Openings!

Rule of the Month

January 7, 2013


One of the core functions of the USGA is to write and interpret the Rules of Golf.

2-1/1.5 Players Agree to Consider Hole Halved During Play of Hole Q In a match, a player and his opponent play their second shots on a par-5 hole. Unexpectedly, neither ball can be found. Rather than proceeding under Rule 27-1, both players agree to a half. Is this permitted? A Yes. An agreement to halve a hole being played does not of itself constitute an agreement to waive the Rules. However, if the players agree to consider a hole halved without either player making a stroke, they should be disqualified under Rule 1-3 for agreeing to exclude the operation of Rule 2-1 by failing to play the stipulated round.

January Lunch Menus.

What is Happening in January

1st 3rd 4th 8th 10-12 11th

New Years Day - Club Open Arts Auxillary Ladies Association Lunch Rotary Limited Menu - Chef on Vacation CPE Education & Lunch Bridge 15th Rotary 5 More Days left on Food Credit 17th SEAGD Board Meeting Classics 18th Bridge 21st MLK-REL Day - Club Open 22nd Rotary Club Closed 24th PEO 25th Bridge 29th Rotary

The club is available for your company or personal events. Contact the office to see what days are available. 566-3463 or

Enjoy lunch at the club with friends. We serve a daily blue plate Tuesday through Friday 11:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Hamburger Buffet & Hotdogs on Satur-

day and Sunday and Lunch Buffet on Sunday. The Chef has a weekly menu that comes out on Tuesday. To receive a copy please email: and request to be added to the email list.

February 2010 Snow

Cliff Caroll, Robert Sexton, Jack Waller, Sonny Williford

7:30 p.m. Discover BCS National Championship

The club will be open for the national championship game. Come out and cheer on the Crimson Tide while watching the game on our NEW Flat screen TV. Drink Specials and appetizers will be available. Game begins at 7:30 p.m. the doors will open at 6:30 p.m. See you at the club.

Martin Luther King & Robert E Lee Day The club will be open on Monday January 2, 2013 for golf and limited lunch service. The club will be closed on January 22, 2013 and re-open on Wednesday January 23, 2013.

TCC January 2013 Newsletter  

Troy Country Club 2013 Newsletter

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