Review for Dartmouth (Championship)

Reviewer Score:


A round at Dartmouth is to play 2 nines of very differing quality and architectural note. Constructed on terrain thats not naturally suited for setting out a course its very reminiscent of St Mellion, a purpose built golf resort surrounded by farmland (and calling itself Dartmouth even though the sea is some 5 miles away!).

The front 9 is pure quality and very tough, carving its way through and up and down a narrow wooded valley; it demands you bring your ‘A’ game from the tee or you’llll be reloading a lot. It starts out with an uphill par 4 then a cracking downhill par 4 where danger awaits if you’re too long and stray to far from the fairway. Then an excellent par 3 which is hugely satisfying just to find the green from the whites. There's no let up on the par SI2 4th, that did eat a couple of my golf balls even though the shots only slightly drifted offline. The quality continues with a tough 200 yd uphill par 3 at the 7th, going out finishes with a couple of nice par 5's. Unfortunately after that the quality dips considerably with succession of pedestrian par 4's which while quite long and tough don't reach the highs set earlier on, only the SI1 par 4 15th and closing par 3 18th remain in the memory post round.

For mid-October and events this year the condition was excellent, the greens were little slower than I'd have liked but still had nice roll. As ever with these resort type courses pace of play was pretty appalling, I suspect there is no restriction on handicaps which on a tough course like this is a recipe for glacial slow play, I watched one 4 ball tee shots not even reach half way to one of the shorter par 3's! Also I would recommend a buggy, it has some of steepest walks between holes I've ever seen and some big gaps.

Notwithstanding that I did enjoy my round at Dartmouth, comparing it with St Mellion it lacks that courses consistency but being generous I rate it as 4 balls for the front 9 alone.

Date: October 19, 2020

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