19th Hole: TravelGolf.com Posts List Of Top 10 Local Courses
Tim McDonald, who writes for TravelGolf.com is obviously a man who is not afraid of controversy.
McDonald has trod the sacred grounds of the Sandhills golf courses and come away with enough knowledge that he's willing to put himself on the record with a rating of the top 10 courses in the Pinehurst/Southern Pines area.
It was not a shocker that McDonald chose the famed No. 2 Course as his No. 1. Everyone does that, of course. But there were some mild surprises throughout the rest of the list.
It should be noted that neither of the Country Club of North Carolina nor the Forest Creek courses are on the list. Both of those clubs are ultra private and were probably not included because of their exclusivity.
McDonald admits in the article that he had to make some tough choices, and that's understandable.
Any ranking of courses in this area is an unenviable task and is certain to leave some feelings ruffled.
TravelGolf.com claims to reach 2.5 million golfers a month through more than 40 online golf publications. So it figures that McDonald's rankings are being widely read. No matter how individuals may feel about the list, it has to be a good thing to be on it.
Here's how McDonald ranks them:
Pinehurst No. 2
Pinehurst No. 4
Pinehurst No. 7
Pinehurst No. 8
Mid South Club
National Golf Club
Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club
Pinewild Country Club, Magnolia Course
Legacy Golf Links.
After No. 2, there is sure to be some discussion regarding the choices. Many people feel that Pinehurst No. 8 is the second best course at the resort.
And, although No. 7 is a great course, most people tend to rank it fourth among the eight courses at the Pinehurst eight-course complex.
The Pine Needles ranking as No. 7 is also a surprise to many. The course that has already hosted two U.S. Women's Opens and has another coming up next year is better than ever after a complete restoration project completed a few months ago.
Pinehurst No. 2 is widely regarded as the best work of the renowned architect Donald Ross. Pinehurst No. 4 and No. 8 are the work of Tom Fazio, and Pinehurst No. 7 was designed by Rees Jones.
The Mid South Club, originally known as Pinehurst Plantation, is regarded as one of the best works by the Arnold Palmer Design Co., while National Golf Club is the only Jack Nicklaus creation in the Sandhills.
Pine Needles is another Ross design, while Pinewild's Magnolia Course is the work of Gene Hamm.
Talamore is another Rees Jones gem, while Legacy Golf Links was the first course designed by Jack Nicklaus II.
Whether golf experts and fans agree or disagree with the arrangement of the list compiled by McDonald, it is an impressive one.
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