An incredible historic idiot wind caught my tee shot at the first and dumped it into the large bunker on the left hand side of the fairway. I have to say “incredible historic” as the trap must only have been 130 yards away and otherwise I’d feel pretty self conscious. Fortunately I had yet to check the course guide, because if so I would have seen that my ball was in “The Shamrock Bunker”. Most likely I would have thrown up the bacon roll I’d just hastily stuffed inside me. Was it too late in the day to go somewhere else? Would I be the first person to walk off the course after 1 shot? At least this Jack Nicklaus design was already asking serious questions of a golfer.
The rest of Killeen Castle wasn’t this bad though, and things did improve. It was a decent enough place to be and if life wasn’t so short I’d surely have fewer regrets about playing here. It was challenging (if you like challenges) and the early season conditioning (April) was also good (if a little soft). The routing was effective in how it explored the property. I liked the use of the burn at the par 5 12th. In truth, other holes probably stick in my mind too, I just can’t recall them right now.
I am struggling a little to find the inspiration to write about Killeen Castle, but my OCD ensures I must submit something for a course I have played. I may not rush back, but would consider giving it another go. On a lovely windless sunny summer’s evening. This course is currently ranked as the 5th best of its type in Ireland after all. I don’t know if this talks to the quality of parkland golf in Ireland, or more my view of garden golf in general. Presumably the latter. I feel like a gymnastics judge being asked to preside over a figure skating competition. Or a figure skating judge filling in at a gymnastics competition.
As for a visit: if you like parkland golf, then don’t think twice, it’s alright. And if you know that’s not your thing, then you don’t need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows
Date: November 30, 2019