#61  
Old 07-14-2021, 02:48 PM
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Originally Posted by araytx View Post
My only "concern"/issue was with the forced DZ on hole 7. I do realize you pointed out that was not your call, however one thing I absolutely feel I don't like and isn't fair to players is a forced drop zone when there is both OB and trees/obstacles in the circle. On that hole if a player goes OB long there should be a way he/she could choose the OB spot. I recognize the issue with "oh did it cross and where," etc., but for something like that get a spotter. A player really could throw an excellent shot, barely nick that tree & ricochet OB and have to go back 150-ish feet or whatever that DZ is.
I definitely agree with this. I did not like the force DZ for OB drives. The penalty was severe enough that I think it led to more conservative play on the hole and less birdies. I won't know for sure until I can run some tournaments without forcing the DZ on OB drives. The hole's lack of birdies is a bit troubling to me. I never thought that hole would be so difficult to birdie.
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  #62  
Old 07-14-2021, 05:37 PM
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For those who might be interested, the lead MPO card was filmed at this tournament. Here are the links:

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  #63  
Old 07-15-2021, 02:18 PM
Rastnav Rastnav is offline
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I'm going to first caveat that I have essentially no experience playing in tournaments, and I'm not anything more than a recreational level player. It’s also the case that people being frustrated by the course doesn’t necessarily equate to the course not doing its job. All of the below is just my impression from watching the videos. I’m especially putting this down because you don’t seem to have gotten much in the way of anyone expressing any agreement with the player feedback you’ve gotten.

Having watched the videos, I think it puts the feedback you’ve received from those who have played it into more perspective. Pictures don’t really tell the story.

It seemed to me on first watch that the way the O.B. plays on the first few holes seems excessive. I can’t recall offhand seeing O.B. that tight to the basket on any tournament coverage I’ve seen. You can’t even play for a safe par, as any shot played safe off the tee, just guarantees you are throwing your layup right at OB that’s about 5 feet from the basket. Play safer with the layup, and now you may be facing a tester putt with OB right next to the basket. I think that describes at least 1, 2, 6 and 7. Add that to the frequency of baskets being placed right on top of ridges on much else of the course, and I think the course is going to grind on you. Having those be the very first two holes you see is going create a first impression.

On 8, the tee pad for 9 being very near the line you want to throw, seems like a valid critique. The ceiling being so low, and the fairway so tight, when you need to get far left so late seems like it’s going to be frustrating and would encourage that higher line that brings the 9 tee in play.

The very, very tight (also low ceiling) line on 11 combined with a very deep, disc eating, creek that seems like it’s actually partially inside circle 1 seems like it’s going to inevitably result in frustration.

And then you get to hole 12 which is a 270 foot par 3 where it seems like the designed play is a 200 foot putter shot followed by turning roughly 90 degrees to a 70 to 90 foot approach. Again, a tight, low ceiling tee shot. Hole 13 is similar, being a 423 foot par 4 that again asks for a chip shot off the tee, without much in the way of opportunities to throw a line for advantage.

Hole 14 you do get to throw a line off the tee, but I think given the way the basket is guarded, with basically thick rough directly in front of it inside the circle and without large gaps to either side, is there any tee shot that will really give you a good shot at getting to the basket?

I can certainly see people getting frustrated by the course given the combination of what a being asked for in terms precise shot making with the kinds of constraints being placed on the shots you can throw.

I definitely don’t get the complaints about the existence of mandos or the number of par 3s, but I wonder if that is more influenced by everything else. Nobody is going to beef about DeLaveaga having too many par 3s.

I wonder what would happen if the baskets were pulled about 10 feet? farther from OB in various places and if some of the smaller trees and branches that put ceiling limitations on various shots were cleared out. But, again, that’s completely uninformed by any real experience.

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  #64  
Old 07-15-2021, 06:29 PM
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Doofenshmirtz Doofenshmirtz is offline
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Originally Posted by Rastnav View Post
It seemed to me on first watch that the way the O.B. plays on the first few holes seems excessive. I can’t recall offhand seeing O.B. that tight to the basket on any tournament coverage I’ve seen. You can’t even play for a safe par, as any shot played safe off the tee, just guarantees you are throwing your layup right at OB that’s about 5 feet from the basket. Play safer with the layup, and now you may be facing a tester putt with OB right next to the basket.
First, let me thank you for all of your thoughts. They are helpful. I will say that I should have simply called this the first card and not the lead card as it was the first round of the tourney.

The following are my thoughts on your comments and what I see in the video and not meant to be a rebuttal as I can't say that any of your criticisms are wrong. But there are some things that are not apparent in the video and that the commentator gets wrong (he really didn't like the course and expressed this very vocally to the TD during the tournament).

For hole 1, with a safe shot, laying up without danger of OB is actually pretty easy. You'll notice that the two players who laid up with their second shot had no problem doing so. The basket is about 8 feet from OB. The player who went OB did so on a horrible putt/birdie attempt when he also could have easily laid up for par.

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I think that describes at least 1, 2, 6 and 7. Add that to the frequency of baskets being placed right on top of ridges on much else of the course, and I think the course is going to grind on you. Having those be the very first two holes you see is going create a first impression.
The baskets are close to OB, there's no denying that. I agree 2B is probably too close to OB. But this, in some respects, comes down to how aggressive these players want to be. It's pretty easy to avoid OB on the drive on 2. If you watch the layups, Rasmussen nearly threw OB trying to put his putter under the basket, it didn't go OB, but he could have easily laid up 10 feet shorter and left himself with a gimme putt without the butt-clenching moment that he made himself endure. Ovaitt went OB trying to make an 80 ft putt when he also could have safely laid up and given himself a gimme putt. I don't know what Ivory was thinking with that backhand drive that went OB. Far be it from me to tell MPO players how to play, but I think you saw three mental errors on this hole and a bad putt from Patin. This doesn't invalidate your criticism, but all these guys could easily have walked away with pars. Despite Rasmussen's near disastrous error, he parred the hole and gained a stroke on his card mates.

6 is similar but much shorter. Ovaitt was OB on his drive and made the DZ putt for Par. Everyone else birdied it. Among MPO players it gave up more than 50% birdies. Is it too close to OB? Maybe. The alternatives for this hole, which is a transition hole from one side of the park to the other, weren't good. Does that make the hole better? No. But I kinda like this hole although I admit that part of my liking it comes from the fact that it is pretty much mandated by the available space. Could the basket be further from OB, yes, but at 250' and fairly open it will get exceedingly easy very quickly with movement of the basket further away from OB.

I think that the biggest problem with 7 in this tournament was the OB to DZ rule. As to the play of these MPO players, the drives and putts that went OB were easily avoidable. The color commentary guy (who shot a +5 on this course), mentions the Mando cutting off a hyzer route but fails to mention that that hyzer route is directly over another tee box. All the MPO players want hyzer routes on every hole.

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On 8, the tee pad for 9 being very near the line you want to throw, seems like a valid critique. The ceiling being so low, and the fairway so tight, when you need to get far left so late seems like it’s going to be frustrating and would encourage that higher line that brings the 9 tee in play.
That is the first time anyone had ended up that far past the hole that I know of. It was a mistake. But I will correct the safety issue with the next tee box promptly. Incidentally, the equipment operator who placed the tee box took out three or four trees and a bunch of underbrush right there just because he wanted to. He also opened up that thumber route on hole 9. Still, you can't really put your tee shot under the basket. The best you can do is get about 10-15 feet away. My intention on this hole was to require a shot that not only hit a tight line, but that traveled a range of distances that made for about a 30 ft. long landing area to the right of the basket. Hit the line and throw the right distance and you are in the circle. The players that went past the basket just threw way too hard and gave themselves no chance at birdie.

Quote:
The very, very tight (also low ceiling) line on 11 combined with a very deep, disc eating, creek that seems like it’s actually partially inside circle 1 seems like it’s going to inevitably result in frustration.
That is not a low ceiling shot. The slough (not a creek) is inside the circle. All the players, except Ivory, threw too high. If you throw a straight shot, downward at the ground inside the circle, and hit your line, you have a birdie. It's narrow, but hit the line and you are parked. The three shots that went too high never had a chance of getting inside Circle 1.


Quote:
And then you get to hole 12 which is a 270 foot par 3 where it seems like the designed play is a 200 foot putter shot followed by turning roughly 90 degrees to a 70 to 90 foot approach. Again, a tight, low ceiling tee shot. Hole 13 is similar, being a 423 foot par 4 that again asks for a chip shot off the tee, without much in the way of opportunities to throw a line for advantage.
12 is definitely a problem hole. There is a RHFH line over the creek that can result in a birdie, but you risk OB over the creek. There is a difficult, but safe, line to the right. No one is using the forehand line and, if that doesn't change after I adjust the RHFH line to try to make it more appealing, I will move the basket.

On 13, there is a small landing zone. However, it is not a low ceiling shot. You will notice that Ivory threw sky high off the tee trying to weave through the upper story of this forest which is mostly pine trees which have no limbs for their first 50-60 feet. It's a very, very risky line and he ended up paying for it dearly partly as a result of just bad shots. Just after that, Patin threw a shot that was about 30 feet high which is the intended line. Only Ovaitt hit the landing zone and then, instead of trying to hit a narrow line with a more conventional throw to lay up for a birdie try, he threw a roller so hard that it went 30 feet past the basket through fairly heavy brush. My group was behind this group. I threw and Envy backhand from the same spot as Ovaitt and birdied the hole.

Quote:
Hole 14 you do get to throw a line off the tee, but I think given the way the basket is guarded, with basically thick rough directly in front of it inside the circle and without large gaps to either side, is there any tee shot that will really give you a good shot at getting to the basket?
Not realistically, and that is why it is a par 4. I'm not saying that someone with a huge arm won't get lucky one day, but it will be luck if they park that basket off the tee box.

Quote:
I can certainly see people getting frustrated by the course given the combination of what a being asked for in terms precise shot making with the kinds of constraints being placed on the shots you can throw.
They were obviously frustrated. Kees is a short, tight, difficult course compared to the other two courses in the tournament. The MPO player who shot -4 made no bogies. I'd bet that he played far less aggressively than his division mates who were on camera. The MP50 player that shot -5 was on my card and just hit his lines.

I have talked to the TD extensively about this tournament, about potential modifications and the complaints of mostly the MPO players. And we both were scratching our heads at some of what we both thought was overly aggressive play. If a 1000 rated player just accepts that all they need to do is try to avoid bogies, they will come away with a good score.

Quote:
I definitely don’t get the complaints about the existence of mandos or the number of par 3s, but I wonder if that is more influenced by everything else. Nobody is going to beef about DeLaveaga having too many par 3s.
The commenter shot +5 during his round. Like some of the other MPO players, he did not think he should have had to play this course and thought he should have been able to throw hyzers on every hole.

[/QUOTE]I wonder what would happen if the baskets were pulled about 10 feet? farther from OB in various places and if some of the smaller trees and branches that put ceiling limitations on various shots were cleared out. But, again, that’s completely uninformed by any real experience.[/QUOTE]

Moving both 2B and 6 further away from the creeks is an option. I may happen on 6 just because of erosion issues. I'm not inclined to change 1 or 7 as I think that overly aggressive risk taking was given the award it deserved. I also threw OB on 7, but I love it every time I walk up to that tee box. Again, I don't agree with the OB to DZ rule used in this tournament and it is not part of the Tee sign instructions.

Most of the mandos were made necessary by the clearing done by one AH equipment operator who wouldn't listen to anyone who told him to leave the trees and brush alone. Mandos on 3, 4 and 10 are not intended to be permanent and will be removed once some additional barrier plants are put in this fall. The Mando on 1 was only for the tournament because the TD thought that some players might risk bombing the next tee box if it weren't there.

As to the low ceilings, the only truly low ceiling holes are 2B, 5 (which is overly easy), 8, 9 (but see the thumber route) 12 (right route) and 17. Of those, I agree that 8, 9 and 12 probably all need some trimming.

None of this is to say that the holes couldn't be better. That's just my thoughts on them right now. I think most of the MPO players just don't like this course because it is so short and tight and that no amount of tweaking these holes is going to satisfy them. I had hoped to see them do much better, but I know that I have underestimated the difficulty level of this layout.

Locally, the course seems to get good reviews. League scores seem to track the tournament scoring pretty well. We have no MPO players locally.

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  #65  
Old 07-21-2021, 12:51 PM
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Originally Posted by Doofenshmirtz View Post

So after considering all this and looking at the stats, I started wondering just what makes a course a good course for tournaments. Is scoring spread important? Satisfaction of the participants?
I play tournaments because I enjoy disc golf. You know I do not need any discs :lol:

I can't see me playing any more tournaments there because I simply do not enjoy playing the course. For me, it would not take much, but I know my desired changes would never happen.
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Old 07-23-2021, 03:01 PM
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Doofenshmirtz Doofenshmirtz is offline
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Originally Posted by PMantle View Post
I play tournaments because I enjoy disc golf. You know I do not need any discs :lol:

I can't see me playing any more tournaments there because I simply do not enjoy playing the course. For me, it would not take much, but I know my desired changes would never happen.
It would be interesting to see how the play volume splits between Kees and the two much more open courses at Buhlow while Buhlow is not flooded, i.e., when there is a choice between two courses. We'll never get the actual data, but Kees is getting plenty of play.
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  #67  
Old 07-26-2021, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Doofenshmirtz View Post
It would be interesting to see how the play volume splits between Kees and the two much more open courses at Buhlow while Buhlow is not flooded, i.e., when there is a choice between two courses. We'll never get the actual data, but Kees is getting plenty of play.
Yes, we have a lot of people intimidated by distance, plus there's more shade.
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