Old Today, 08:13 AM
johnrhouck johnrhouck is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Austin TX
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Originally Posted by Mando View Post
A couple of questions;
1) What is the minimum gap that you would design in the first 50-75 feet of a
wooded hole, on holes 275 feet or longer ? Do you feel that early trouble is an over-used design feature or a good way to create scoring spread ?
2) I read somewhere that professional designers feel it it easier to design quality par 4's, than it is to design quality par 3's. Agree or disagree ?
I've been thinking a lot about your first question, Mando. There are some important principles involved.

First, the size of the gap depends on who is playing it (skill level), how far they need to go after they get through the gap, and whether they'll be using a midrange, putter, or driver. In some cases, it'll also depend on if there are any other options, and what the risks and rewards are for trying the gap.

I use a Ten Times rule as a place to start. I think that 5' wide at 50' (or 6' wide at 60', or 7' wide at 70'...) is a fair challenge for experienced players, and fairly skilled players should be able to hit it most of the time (which is what you want), even if the hole or landing area is 250'-300' from the tee. I don't like to go any tighter than that on a hole where you want most players to make the gap. You can go a little tighter sometimes in the right situation, but I personally don't like to do that more than once or twice in 18 holes.

As far as using a tight gap to create scoring spread, that's a really important question. I would say this to anyone designing or re-designing this kind of hole: if you make a better hole, it will automatically have a better scoring spread. Don't ever do anything just to make a better spread; do things that will make a better hole.

And always remember that a good hole will have a good scoring spread. But a good scoring spread doesn't mean you have a good hole.

On your second question, I do agree that it's harder to make a really good par three than it is to make a really good par four. I think that's because you can combine two good par threes to make a really good par four, where the whole exceeds the sum of the parts.

Thanks for those questions, and thanks for your patience.
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Old Today, 09:05 AM
rhatton1 rhatton1 is offline
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Courses Played: 5
Posts: 86
Thanks for your answers John and Chuck. As for the hole designs etc, I have joined up with the DGCD group so I will be hitting you all up with some questions on there once I can find the time and will share the contentious proposed hole designs(new baby, hectic work schedule etc etc slowing me down at the moment)

The blue and red courses are now fully installed for all year round play and getting a good response. The Gold course is an extension which can only be played for 8 months of the year and may only be set up for top level tournaments as the blue can handle more run of the mill events.

I think my final decision making will be to make a course for the top guys and possibly a different basket position instead of different tee position for the lower rated divisions as the crossing as it stands will be third or 4th shots for lower rated players the different tee isn't going to work in this instance. There should be enough propogators in the divisions to make this work as I am expecting to get near full fields for the top level tournaments. It's a shame not to play the same course for all but we need more top level courses over here.

First British Tour event at the course is in March so we've got a bit of time to work with and play test it all out.
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Old Today, 10:12 AM
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Jukeshoe Jukeshoe is offline
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Join Date: Dec 2009
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And always remember that a good hole will have a good scoring spread. But a good scoring spread doesn't mean you have a good hole.
Great advice!
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