White Clay Creek - Delaware - USA

White Clay Creek Country Club,
777 Delaware Park Boulevard,
Wilmington,
Delaware (DE) 19804,
USA


  • +1 800 417 5687

Horse racing at Delaware Park dates back to 1937, when William DuPont Jnr designed and built the track, which is one of more than twenty that he constructed during his career. There’s a casino on the property now and in 2005, an Arthur Hills-designed golf course was opened for play when the White Clay Creek Country Club was established.

Set out to the south and east of the horseracing track, the course features water hazards (in the form of small ponds and streams) on many of the holes. The four par threes on the card are nicely spaced out at holes 4, 7, 13 and 17 but don’t anticipate scoring easily here as two of these “short” holes measure over 220 yards when playing from the back markers.

Other notable holes include the difficult par four 6th (measuring all of 491 yards from tee to green), the short par four 9th (which plays to an elevated green), and the doglegged 11th, where it’s best to stay left off the tee to avoid water down the right side of the fairway. Steering a line down the left side on the 18th is also the smart play on the home hole.

If the above article is inaccurate, please let us know by clicking here

Write a review

Reviews for White Clay Creek

Average Reviewers Score:
Description: The modern 18-hole layout at White Clay Creek Country Club is routed to the south and east of the horseracing track at Delaware Park. Rating: 6 out of 10 Reviews: 2
TaylorMade
Mark White

White Clay Creek in Delaware Park has some major pluses but also some significant negatives.

The pluses are that it is a course suited for good players. Designed by Arthur Hills, the course winds its way through wetlands and trees with the ever-present White Clay creek coming into play on nearly all of the holes. The creek often cuts across fairways either horizontally or diagonally with the typical width being 30 -35 yards of additional carry. If the creek was not considered to be an adequate enough penalty, then it was dammed to create ponds.

We played the course on a colder day with high gusting winds. The fairways were wet which meant no additional roll. There are many heroic forced carries one has to make on the tee shot as well as on the second shot on the par 5’s.

The green complexes are good with a lot of mounding, many raised greens, sometimes a good use of short grass and run-offs and micro-contouring surrounding the greens. While I sometimes felt the greens to be too small, there is a really clever use of subtle tiers that define the larger part of the green versus the smaller sections. I also liked the many raised greens providing defined targets.

The bunkers are also well placed around the course although some still had water in them. Mr. Hills deserves a lot of credit for his routing which had to incorporate the stream and the wetlands.

There is a lot to like here although perhaps it was due to the weather conditions or the wet course as I felt the course to be one of the most difficult public courses I have played. The forced carries and crosses of the streams always seemed to be right at my limit, causing me to change the game. The course is a par 72 playing 7007 yards from the Gold tees and 6467 from the Black tees, although I noted that the Black tees on my day were more often at the back of the box, likely adding another 125 yards. The course is rated lower than it should be given the penal nature of the course. From the Gold tees the course is rated 73.2/142 which the Black tees are 71.5/133. I thought the Gold should be at least 74.5/145 while the Black tees should be 73.0/140. Of the public courses in the greater Philadelphia/Wilmington area, I do think White Clay Creek is the most difficult.

On the negative side the course does not drain well. The wet ground and water in the bunkers were not from a recent rain but from two days previously. The course is most definitely a cart course. I would not be surprised if the cart paths exceed 8 miles. It is nearly one mile from the second green to the third tee. Finally, I thought the course relies a bit too much on forced carries although maybe I would change my mind if I decided to go back or if the weather conditions had been better.

1. Par 4 – 417/375. The creek bisects the fairway going diagonally from the left to the right where the green sits. There is a central bunker. The green is elevated and appears much smaller than it is due to the presence of a bunker on a mound on the left side of the green. It is a difficult hole to start on.

2. Par 4 – 382/357. You have to carry the stream which continues down the right side. This is a narrower fairway so it has plenty of bite to it. The elevated green is angled right to left with a deep bunker on the left middle. The green has a lot of slope to it. For the number 15 index on the course, it is a hole where one can one up a high score.

3. Par 5 – 593/559. It takes a mile long cart ride to get to the tee. The tee shot has another forced carry but the bigger danger is in the second shot where one must avoid the water down the right in the form of a pond. The greens sits above a wetland/rough area with a larger section left and a vertical tier dropping to the smaller section on the right. The right side of the green is surrounded by short grass. This is the number one index and a hole where anything can happen.

4. Par 3 – 213/208. One of the few holes without water, the green is angled to the right and is long.

5. Par 4 – 400/386. A giant ravine is off the entirety of the right side of this dogleg right. The straight shot trying to play safe will likely find two bunkers at the outer corner. The green has a single bunker on the right front and is slightly elevated. This is a strong hole.

6. Par 4 – 491/422. This is probably the most visually attractive hole on the course. Playing from two elevated tees, there is another forced carry over water and wetlands. As you near the green there is a center-line bunker and five other bunkers. It is perhaps the best hole on the golf course.

7. Par 3 – 221/208. This flat par 3 has a bunker left and two on the right. There is not much to this hole other than length.

8. Par 5 – 515/486. There is another forced carry off the tee followed by another forced carry for most players. The hole bends to the left and has one of the better greens on the golf course.

9. Par 4 – 343/316. After another long cart ride one feels like they have a good chance. We caught perhaps the highest wind of the day and even though we thought we hit very good drives, we discovered they had only gone 175 yards. A large pond is off the right side of this hole. The green is elevated with two bunkers on the right front. For a short hole, it is no guaranteed par.

10. Par 5 – 582/557. This hole bends to the right ending in another smallish elevated green. Fortunately the green has no bunkers. There is a long forced carry followed by another carry over a ravine that cuts across the entirety of the fairway. The hole is lined on both sides with thick trees. The green is sloped right to left and tricky.

11. Par 4 – 444/398. Another sharp dogleg right with another long forced carry to the fairway. The creek and thick trees go down the right side with thick trees down the left. The green is probably the most elevated on the course with a deep bunker down the right front half of the green. #10 and #11 are two very difficult golf holes.

12. Par 4 – 314/304. This is a wonderful short hole with water down the entirety of the right side before crossing horizontally in front of the raised green. The green has no bunkers. The green has a smaller left side.

13. Par 3 – 190/183. Among the many shots I would do over with more course knowledge, the tee shot on 13 would be high on the list. It’s another long cart ride to the tee where you play over a diagonally crossing stream left to right. The green is thin and elevated with a front left bunker. Thick trees and the stream continue down the right side. As the wind was again very strong both in our face and left to right I aimed down the left side, hit the ball straight and ended up kicking off the bank of the hill about 30 yards left of the green. I hit what I thought was a good pitch but the green is tilted right to left and with the wind behind me I had a low probability of being able to stop it on the green. The green is narrow and requires a well-executed shot to reach it and stay on. The only safe miss on this hole is short of the green.

14. Par 4 – 375/325. This hole plays a bit to the right bringing the creek and trees into play. Going too long and slightly right will likely put one in two fairway bunkers that sit inside the fairway. The green has two fronting bunker and is very narrow at the front with a right side middle hump. This is another somewhat small green. It is a fun hole.

15. Par 5 – 550/540. The final par 5 plays from an elevated tee over the creek and wetland and then over a pond. The longer hitters will cut the dogleg left but could end up in two bunkers. I played it too safe to the right which brought the stream back into play for my second as the stream cuts horizontally across the fairway. After the stream there is a large bunker on the right about 50 yards short of the green. The green has a fall-off on its left side which could send a ball all the way into a pond. The green is angled right to left and is somewhat small for the length of the hole.

16. Par 4 – 392/361. This hole is a dogleg left with another forced carry off the tee to cover the wetlands down the left side. You have to cross a very wide area of wetlands for one’s second into another elevated green with a front right corner bunker. This green is also narrow.

17. Par 3 – 183/145. A large pond is down the left side of a green that sits in a bit of a bowl. The green is tilted to the left towards the water. There are no bunkers at the green.

18. Par 4 – 372/337. A final forced carry of 220 – 260 yards awaits the person trying to either get over the stream or cut off more of it. Two large bunkers sit at the back of the fairway which is a sharp dogleg right. The green is again elevated and the back half is not real visible from the fairway. Much like the opening hole, the finishing hole is one where one can run up a high score.

My overall assessment of the course is that it is difficult with a lot of forced carries. One needs to be able to hit tee shots of 260 yards as well as straight to score well here. I really liked the elevated greens. I strongly disliked the amount of cart riding one has to do. There is a lot of redundancy to the course as well. It is definitely a course that is hard tee -to-green with only a few green surfaces being more difficult to read.

One should play this if they want to be humbled.

April 21, 2022
5 / 10
Reviewer Score:
TaylorMade

Respond to above review
  Was this review helpful?
0 people found this review helpful

Benjamin M Tishelman

Fun course, but tons of hazards- many forced carry second shots. The par 3s have basic bunkering but play long with the except of 17 which has water and a tight bunker short left.

You have to drive well here, rough was long in spots making it impossible to reach the green in 2.

Best holes are 1, 6, 9, 11, 15, and 16 in my opinion.

July 26, 2021
7 / 10
Reviewer Score:
TaylorMade

Respond to above review
  Was this review helpful?
0 people found this review helpful