Swedish architect Peter Nordwall may be better known for designing top-flight courses such as Skövde, Stenungsund and Svartinge in his home country, but he is also admired in Scandinavian golfing circles for the top-drawer 27-hole golf complex he created here in neighbouring Norway at the end of the 1990s.
The Losby site is only a 20-minute drive to the east of Oslo city centre and it was once a thriving centre for the timber trade. Those days are long gone now but the deforestation of the area in times gone by allowed the construction of a 70-room hotel and two golf courses – the Østmork 18-hole championship course and Vestmork 9-hole course – on the flood plain of the River Losby.
Two of the first three holes on the card are tough par fives then four of the next half dozen holes to the turn are demanding par fours – each of them in excess of 400-yards from the back tees. The pick of the front nine is “Styggerann” the 175-yard par three 8th where the tee shot must carry water all the way to a green protected on either flank by bunkers.
The river comes into play at many holes on the inward half, especially at the 12th, called “Finnland” – the hole furthest from the clubhouse – which is a 336-yard short par four. Water runs down the right side of the fairway then cuts in front of the green to pressurize both tee shot and approach. Don’t be fooled by the short yardage on this hole – it’s not rated the toughest hole on the back nine for nothing!
Losby was delighted when the European Ladies Tour held the SAS Masters competition over their championship course in August 2007 – true recognition that the layout is one of the very best in the country. Fittingly, Norway's Suzann Pettersen lifted the title in fine style, winning by nine strokes from Australian Nikki Garrett.