First can I say I wasn’t impressed with the stuffy and rude reception we received when arriving at the pro shop. It wasn’t needed and set a sour tone for the day. Also the fairway and tee conditions for July were quite poor for the stature and reputation that comes with a former Ryder Cup venue. The fairways on the front 9 were thread bare, cracked in places, very dry and lacked grass. Having played Alwoodley the day before and with it being in immaculate condition i’m not sure there’s can be any excuses, especially with the £10 difference in summer green fee.
On to the course rating. Firstly the driving range was exquisite. Free range balls included in your ticket and probably the the most scenic practice facility i’ve seen. It was stunning, a huge positive and perfectly situated next to the first tee.
The first hole is a standard par 5 and a relatively easy start. I felt holes 2-10 were the strongest stretch of the course with holes 5 and 7 being my personal favourites. Holes 11-14 I felt were a little weaker, however still interesting and certainly a good test. 15 and 16 were strong requiring strategic drives and 17 a short par 3 probably the weakest of the par 3s on the course. 18 is an excellent finishing hole requiring a long drive avoiding the many bunkers down the right leaving a mid to long iron firing straight at the original clubhouse where seated guests can enjoy (and heckle) final shots of the day. A great finishing hole befitting the course.
We stayed and had an excellent meal in the bar and debated on where the course rates within the uk and the region. We agreed that it was an enjoyable, fair test for all handicaps. There was no real signature hole but there wasn’t a weak hole either. The condition of greens and bunkers were top notch. For me the rolling land, gorse and picturesque nature of the course highlighted its rightful place as one of Yorkshire’s finest.
Date: August 15, 2020