USGA Championship Previews For 2005


January 27, 2005

U.S. Open
Pinehurst (N.C.) Resort
June 16-19
www.usopen.com
Yardage
: 7,214 yards
Par: 35-35 - 70
Defending champion: Retief Goosen
Opened: 1907
Designer: Donald Ross

USGA championships: This is the eighth USGA championship to be held at the venue and the second U.S. Open following the 1999 event. Pinehurst also annually hosts the North and South Amateur for both men and women, one of the premier amateur competitions in the U.S. The first USGA event held here was the 1962 U.S. Amateur, won by Labron Harris. President Dwight D. Eisenhower, himself a serious golfer, attended the competition. The U.S. Amateur returns to Pinehurst again in 2008.

Early history: In 1935, Pinehurst converted its sand greens to grass, just in time to host the 1936 PGA Championship, won by Denny Shute. Four years later, Ben Hogan won his first professional competition here, taking the North and South Open.

Ross through and through: Some feel that this is Donald Ross' ultimate creation since he spent so much time tinkering with the routing and layout of the No. 2 Course. The key characteristic of the course are the inverted-saucer greens, which puts a premium on shot-making.

Memorable Open: The first U.S. Open ever played on the No. 2 Course arguably was one of the finest in recent memory. Payne Stewart and Phil Mickelson waged a dual over the final few holes with Stewart holing a dramatic 18-foot par putt at the 72nd hole to defeat Mickelson by a stroke. A day later, Mickelson became a father for the first time, but tragedy struck Stewart, who perished in a plane crash four months later. His legacy continues to live on at the resort as Pinehurst erected a statue that depicts Stewart's indelible fist-pump upon making the winning putt. It sits next to course creator Ross and former Pinehurst and USGA president Richard Tufts not far from the first tee.

You can play it: Pinehurst is one of the few U.S. Open venues that the public can play. While Pinehurst does have members, the eight courses at the resort are open for anyone to enjoy them. The No. 2 Course, which hosts the Open, is considered one of the best layouts in the United States by all the major golf publications.

Quotable: "Pinehurst No. 2 is sacred ground in golf. It's Donald Ross' ultimate design because it's his most hands-on creation." - golf course architect Rees Jones.

Few changes: Not much has been done to the course since 1999 when the Open last visited the Sand Hills region. The course has been lengthened by just 39 yards, a testament to just how challenging Pinehurst is to the world's best golfers. New tees on holes two, four, seven, 11, 12 and 14 were constructed.

Tough test: The winning score in 1999 was 1-under-par 279, with the average score for the four days of competition being 74.5. The field nailed less than half of the greens in regulation (47.1 percent) during the week.

Lacking water: Certainly the grounds crew at Pinehurst will use plenty of water to keep the course lush, but the No. 2 Course has only one water hazard and it hardly comes into play for the world's best players. The small holding pond is situated just in front of the 16th tee, a long par 4 that plays as a par 5 for the public and members.

U.S. Women's Open
Cherry Hills Country Club, Cherry Hills Village, Colo.
June 23-26
www.uswomensopen.com
Yardage
: 6,473 yards
Par: 36-35 - 71
Defending champion: Meg Mallon
Opened: 1922
Designer: William Flynn

USGA championships: This will be the eighth USGA championship held at Cherry Hills, but the first Women's Open. Three U.S. Opens (1938, 1960 and 1978) have been held there, along with on U.S. Senior Open, one U.S. Amateur, a U.S. Mid-Amateur and a USGA Senior Amateur.

Why it's right: Cherry Hills can now boast that it has been the host site for the U.S. Open, Senior Open and Women's Open, joining Hazeltine National Golf Club and Winged Foot Golf Club in this exclusive club.

Notable past champions: Luminaries who have won USGA events here include Arnold Palmer (1960 U.S. Open), Jack Nicklaus (1993 Senior Open), Phil Mickelson (1990 U.S. Amateur) and Jay Sigel (1983 U.S. Mid-Amateur).

Donations please: When the USGA awarded the club the 1938 U.S. Open, it required a $10,000 bond be paid to assure a profitable return on the championship. Cherry Hills member Will F. Nicholson Sr. (his son Will Jr. would become USGA president in 1980) said the club "didn't have enough money in our treasury to buy a case of ketchup." But Nicholson, with the help of Clarence Daly, a Denver insurance leader, went up and down 17th street, Denver's financial district, getting business acquaintances to ante up $500 apiece to pay for the bond. The '38 Open was the first held west of the Mississippi and it was a major success, attracting an estimated 37,000 people and netting the club some $23,000.

Ignominious stat: Ray Ainsley holds a dubious USGA record of registering a 19 on Cherry Hills' par-4 16th hole during the 1938 U.S. Open.

Arnie's Army: Arnold Palmer continued his legacy at the 1960 U.S. Open when he charged back from a seven-stroke deficit in the final round to edge reigning U.S. Amateur champion Jack Nicklaus by two shots for his only Open title. Palmer drove the green on the par-4 first hole en route to a 65, the second-best final-round score by a champion (Johnny Miller had a 63 to win the 1973 U.S. Open at Oakmont).

Member honor roll: Several notable players called Cherry Hills home, including 1986 U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Bill Loeffler, who also played on the 1987 USA Walker Cup team, and PGA Tour player Brandt Jobe. Judy Bell, the first woman to serve as USGA president, is a honorary member. Denver native Jill McGill, who won the 1993 U.S. Women's Amateur and 1994 Women's Amateur Public Links, also learned the game at Cherry Hills. Recently, 2001 British Open champion and 1989 U.S. Junior Amateur winner David Duval became a member. PGA Tour winner Mark Wiebe also has been a member for 15 years.

Hail of a championship: Six weeks prior to the 1990 U.S. Amateur, a violent hailstorm pummeled the Denver area, leaving Cherry Hills' manicured fairways and greens in rough shape. Some of the craters created by the hail were 4 inches wide and 2 inches deep. "It's definitely the biggest natural disaster I've ever seen," said former superintendent Dan Pierson. The grounds crew of 40 along with more than 100 members spent hours on their hands and knees fixing the divots. The spirited effort repaired the course to its pre-storm condition, allowing for the championship to go off without a hitch.

U.S. Women's Amateur Public Links
Swope Memorial Golf Course, Kansas City, Mo.
July 11-16
www.uswapl.org
Yardage
: 6,031 yards
Par: 35-36 - 71
Defending champion: Ya-Ni Tseng
Opened: 1934
Designer: A.W. Tillinghast

USGA championships: Although it is one of the oldest venues in the Kansas City area, this is the first time the course has been selected to host a USGA competition. Swope Memorial did host a sectional qualifier for the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship in the mid-1990s.

Tillie Test: A.W. Tillinghast has designed some of the greatest courses in the U.S., including Winged Foot, Baltusrol and Bethpage State Park's Black Course, but Swope Memorial is one of the few that is open to the public (Bethpage is as well). Tillinghast also designed nearby Kansas City Country Club, where a young Tom Watson honed his skills.

Picture Perfect: The 17th hole, a par 5, not only is a challenging golf hole, but it offers a view of the Kansas City skyline.

Going low: Players at this year's WAPL will have to put up a great score to match the competitive course record of 64 set by current PGA Tour pro Matt Gogel in 1997.

Historic Notes: Swope Memorial was the site of the Kansas City Open, an event that was held on the PGA Tour for several years in the 1950s. In the early 1990s, the Kansas City Open was reborn and became a section event for the local Mid-West Section PGA golf professionals. The course also was the site of many exhibition matches featuring such luminaries as Sam Snead, Ben Hogan, Bryan Nelson and Bing Crosby.

U.S. Amateur Public Links
Shaker Run Golf Club, Lebanon, Ohio
July 11-16
www.usapl.org
Yardage
: 6,966 yards
Par: 35-35 - 70
Defending champion: Ryan Moore
Opened: 1979
Designer: Arthur Hills

USGA championships: This is the first USGA competition to be played at the course, but this is the sixth time Ohio has hosted the APL. Ohio hosted the inaugural Amateur Public Links at Ottawa Park Golf Course in Toledo (1922).

Why it's right: Shaker Run is considered one of the premier public golf courses in a state rich with golf tradition.

Happy Birthday: The championship coincides with the centennial celebration of the Greater Cincinnati Golf Association.

Course facts: Shaker Run is a 27-hole facility, with the Woodlands and Lakeside nines serving as the championship site.

Did you know: Shaker Run originally opened as a private club that was owned by Armco Steel for its employees. But after Shaker Golf Corporation (now Vintage Golf Properties, Inc.) purchased the facility in 1993, it became a daily-fee course in March of 1994. The course is now owned and operated by Premier Golf Management.

High praise: In his book, "The Works of Art," noted PGA teaching professional Jim Flick says Shaker Run is one of the "most underrated golf courses in America."

Quirky start: Hills did something in his design of Shaker Run that he had never done before and hasn't done since - he started with a par 5 and placed 10 bunkers on the hole. He did this because of the terrain of the routing. He had some wide open space before getting to a forest that contained holes two through seven. Today, that is the first hole of the Woodlands Course and it will serve as the first hole for the APL.

Layout notes: Water comes into play on seven of the 18 holes and two holes will be converted from par 5s to par 4s for the championship (No. 4 on Woodlands and No. 4 on Lakeside). Woodlands will serve as the front nine and Lakeside the back nine.

U.S. Junior Amateur
Longmeadow Country Club, Longmeadow, Mass.
July 18-23
www.usjunioram.org
Yardage
: 6,673 yards
Par: 35-35 - 70
Defending champion: Sihwan Kim
Opened: 1922
Designer: Donald Ross

USGA championships: This is the second championship to be held here, following the 1995 U.S. Girls' Junior won by Marcy Newton (now Marcy Hart).

Why it's right: Longmeadow joins eight other clubs to have hosted both the U.S. Junior Amateur and the U.S. Girls' Junior.

The Donald: The esteemed course architect certainly made his mark in Massachusetts as this is the third Ross course in the past four years to host a USGA competition. Salem Country Club had the 2001 Senior Open and the nearby Orchards Golf Club was the site of the 2004 Women's Open. Many of Ross' signature features, including dome-shaped, inverted-saucer greens, remain today, although Longmeadow has been lengthened to keep up with the demands of the modern game.

What's in a name: Part of the arrangement when Massachusetts Bay Colony Treasurer William Pynchon purchased the Native American Agawam Plantation on the east bank of the Connecticut river in 1636 — which later became the city of Springfield — were communal grazing grounds known by the Agawams as Massacksic or "ye long meddow." Nearly three decades later, Ross transformed a special corner of that purchase into a classic woodland golf course named Longmeadow Country Club.

Iron clad pioneers: In 1932, J. Victor East, Longmeadow's first pro, worked secretly with Bob Jones, who had retired from competitive golf in 1930, and founding Longmeadow member Milton Rich to produce the country's first matched set of flanged soled irons with steel shafts. At the time, East was the first head of A.G. Spalding's Custom Built Department and the clubs ushered a technological breakthrough for the game. Many of the game's top players, including Byron Nelson, Horton Smith and Tommy Armour, used Longmeadow as a proving ground for the company's equipment.

U.S. Girls' Junior
BanBury Golf Club, Eagle, Idaho
July 18-23
www.usgirlsjunioram.org
Yardage
: 6,348 yards
Par: 35-36 - 71
Defending champion: Julieta Granada
Opened: 1999
Designer: John Harbottle III

USGA championships: This is the first championship for the club.

Why it's right: This will be the first USGA competition to ever be played in Idaho. Alaska, New Hampshire and Utah are now the only states to not host a USGA event. Idaho also has produced a USGA champion as Jean Smith won the 1995 USGA Senior Women's Amateur.

Previous events: The 2003 Idaho Men's Amateur, 2003 Pepsi Idaho Open and 2000 Idaho State Junior Championship for boys and girls were held at BanBury. The course also has served as a qualifying site for the Boise Albertson Open, one of the mainstays on the Nationwide Tour.

You can play it: BanBury is the first daily-fee course to host the U.S. Girls' Junior. The only other venue to host the Girls' Junior that the public has access to is Pine Needles Lodge and Golf Club. Pine Needles is classified as a semi-private resort course.

Design strategy: Water hazards or lateral water hazards comes into play on all 18 holes.

Revisions for the championship: The club built a new tee at the first hole and enlarged the greens at holes two and five.

U.S. Senior Open
NCR Country Club (South Course), Kettering, Ohio
July 28-31
www.ussenioropen.com
Yardage
: 7,000 yards
Par: 36-35 - 71
Defending champion: Peter Jacobsen
Opened: 1954
Designer: Dick Wilson

USGA championships: This is the third to be played at NCR, following the 1986 U.S. Women's Open and 1998 U.S. Mid-Amateur. The club also hosted the 1969 PGA Championship, won by 1986 U.S. Open champion Raymond Floyd.

Did you know: NCR Corporation, formerly known as National Cash Register, is headquartered in Dayton, Ohio. The club is actually owned by the NCR Employee Benefits Association, a non-profit group.

No chaos, please: When the 1986 Women's Open visited NCR, the week was full of unexpected distractions. A local train derailed, causing toxic fumes to be sent into the air, an earthquake measuring 4.2 on the Richter scale rocked the region, a motorbike ran into the press tent and a small plane crashed no more than a mile from the course. And to top it off, fans had to come out one extra day to see Jane Geddes prevail in an 18-hole playoff over Sally Little.

Ohio's own: Jack Nicklaus will serve as the honorary co-chairperson for the championship along with his wife, Barbara. Nicklaus grew up in Columbus, a 90-minute drive from Dayton, and he competed in the 1969 PGA Championship at NCR.

Design notes: While the South Course is known for high-walled bunkers and heavily sloping greens, it does not have any water hazards, almost a rarity in today's modern course design. The sister North Course is also devoid of water. The course's defense is the greens, which could be running around 11 to 11.5 on the Stimpmeter for the championship. The toughest green, according to general manager Adrian Morris, could be at the par-5 10th. "Have you got a golf ball with brakes on it?" said Morris. "You're going to need it. There's a severe slope from back to front . and it doesn't stop sloping at the green." The green is elevated, so shots that spin off could wind up 30 or 40 yards down the fairway. The hole will play 546 yards for the Senior Open.

Preparing for a championship: All 18 tees were rebuilt for the Senior Open, some at the request of the USGA. Two fairways were re-contoured to make them narrower (holes three and 10).

Factoid: Dayton may be a small city when compared to metropolitan areas like New York, Los Angeles, Detroit and Chicago, but it has hosted three PGA Championships, all at different venues (Moraine Country Club in 1945; Miami Valley C.C. in 1957; and NCR Country Club in 1969). The 1957 PGA was the last time the event used a match-play format.

U.S. Women's Amateur
Ansley Golf Club (Settindown Creek Course), Roswell, Ga.
Aug. 1-7
www.uswamateur.org
Yardage
: 6,341 yards
Par: 36-36 - 72
Defending champion: Jane Park
Opened: 1912 (Settindown Course opened in 1986)
Designer: Bob Cupp

USGA championships: This is the first USGA competition to be played here, although the course has served as a sectional qualifying site for the U.S. Open. The club also hosted the Nationwide Tour Championship twice (1995-96).

Why it's right: This is only the third time the state of Georgia has hosted the Women's Amateur and the first time since 1971, when 16-year-old Laura Baugh won at Atlanta Country Club.

Founding member: Ansley was one of the four founding clubs that created the Atlanta Women's Golf Association in 1922.

Joining forces: On Jan. 1, 1999, Ansley Golf Club and Settindown Creek Golf Club combined their memberships to form one golf club. It proved to be a financial windfall for Settindown and gave Ansley members an additional 18 holes. Ansley only has nine holes of golf, but offers members varied social amenities. At the time, 80 percent of Settindown's members carried single-digit handicaps.

On a Dot: Ansley member Dorothy Kirby, nicknamed "Dot," won the 1951 U.S. Women's Amateur and was the championship's runner-up in 1939 and '47. She also played on four USA Curtis Cup teams.

Atlanta Not Just Home Of Jones: The Atlanta area can proudly boast of nine-time USGA champion Bob Jones, but fellow Atlantan Alexa Stirling, who grew up with Jones near East Lake Golf Club, also had an impressive amateur career, winning three consecutive U.S. Women's Amateurs (1916, '19 and '20; World I interrupted the championship in 1917 and 1918). She is one just five women to accomplish such a feat.

Don't Sit On Them: Ansley's Settindown Course has some unusual tee markers - miniature rocking chairs.

Walker Cup Match
Chicago Golf Club
Aug. 13-14
www.walkercup.org
Yardage
: 6,752 yards
Par: 35-35 - 70
Defending champion: Great Britain & Ireland
Opened: 1894
Designer: C.B. Macdonald (redesign by Seth Raynor in 1922)

USGA championships: This is the 11th visit to Chicago Golf Club by the USGA, but only the second since 1979. The club has hosted three U.S. Opens, the last in 1911, four U.S. Amateurs (last in 1912), one Women's Amateur (1903), one USGA Senior Amateur and one Walker Cup (1928).

Welcome back: Chicago Golf Club joins The Country Club and Pine Valley Golf Club as the only three clubs to host the Walker Cup twice.

The fab five: Chicago Golf Club is one of the five original club members that formed the USGA in 1894. The other four are Shinnecock Hills, The Country Club, Newport C.C. and St. Andrews Golf Club.

Why it's right: The Chicago area boasts some of America's finest courses, including past U.S. Open venues Olympia Fields, Medinah, Onwentsia and North Shore, and Chicago Golf Club just might be the best. It consistently has ranked in the top 50 when rated among America's finest courses by golf publications.

Ahead of its time: Chicago G.C. is believed to be the first golf club to ever pipe water to the greens from a central plant.

Luminary members: Among some of the early influential people to call Chicago G.C. home were Robert Todd Lincoln (son of President Abraham Lincoln), Marshall Field, George Pullman and humorist Finley Peter Dunne. On the women's side, Margaret Abbott won the golf competition at the 1900 Olympics in Paris. The club also made all sitting federal judges in the Chicago area honorary members. That list included Judge Kennesaw Mountain Landis, who went on to become the commissioner of baseball following the 1919 Black Sox scandal. Ben Crenshaw also became a non-resident member after falling in love with the course layout.

Fanning the flames: A fire in 1912 destroyed the clubhouse just 10 days before the U.S. Amateur began. Club officials scrambled to get makeshift locker-room facilities ready for the competitors and the event went on as scheduled with Jerry Travers winning.

Redan anyone: One of the course design principles used by Macdonald and Raynor was always doing a Redan hole, which takes its name from a military strategy from the Crimean War. Chicago G.C. is no exception. The 211-yard, par-3 seventh is considered one of the best Redan holes in American golf.

U.S. Amateur
Merion Golf Club, Ardmore, Pa.
Aug. 22-28
www.usamateur.org
Yardage
: 6,846 yards
Par: 36-34 - 70
Second stroke play course: (Philadelphia C.C.), 6,967 yards.
Par: 35-35 - 70
Defending champion: Ryan Moore
Opened: 1912
Designer: Hugh Wilson

USGA championships: This is the record 17th event to be held at this historic venue, following four U.S. Opens, five U.S. Amateurs, four U.S. Women's Amateurs, a U.S. Girls' Junior, a Curtis Cup Match and the 1960 World Amateur Team Championship. Merion also has been selected to host the 2009 Walker Cup.

Why it's right: This is the 75th anniversary of Bob Jones' completion of the "Grand Slam" when he defeated Gene Homans for the 1930 U.S. Amateur title. Merion also happened to be the site of Jones' national debut as a 14-year-old at the 1916 U.S. Amateur and it's where he won his first U.S. Amateur championship in 1924.

Wicker baskets, but no wickets: Once named The Merion Cricket Club, the club changed its name to Merion Golf Club in 1942. But the club still maintains its trademark wicker baskets on the flagsticks as they are less vulnerable to weather than the usual banners.

Notable champions: In addition to Jones, some of the other luminaries to win USGA titles at Merion are Lee Trevino (1971 U.S. Open in a playoff over Jack Nicklaus), Jones (two U.S. Amateurs), Chick Evans (1916 U.S. Amateur to go along with the U.S. Open crown he won earlier that year) and, of course, Ben Hogan, who won the 1950 U.S. Open after returning from a near-fatal auto accident in 1949. Hy Peskin's photo of Hogan's famous 1-iron approach to the 72nd hole remains one of the most memorable images in golf.

The bat is flat: Long before golf permeated the grounds of Merion, cricket was the pre-eminent sport. Nearby Haverford College introduced the game in 1835 and Philadelphia became the home of cricket in America. And in 1865, the Merion Cricket Club was established, with the oldest founder 22 and the youngest 14. The club first leased, then bought five acres of land at the end of a road called Cricket Avenue in Ardmore, Pa. In 1892, the club moved to its current site. Another well-known golf course in the area still uses "cricket" in its official club name (Philadelphia Cricket Club).

Designer notes: Architect Hugh Wilson traveled to Scotland to take notes on the many famous courses in the "Auld" country before mapping out the Merion layout. The third hole was inspired by North Berwick's famous 15th hole (Redan) and No. 17, had a swale fronting the green, reminiscent of The Old Course at St. Andrews' Valley of Sin at the 18th hole. But none of the holes are an exact replica; Wilson just incorporated those principles into his design.

Let's play two: Merion became the first U.S. club to have two 18-hole championship courses. The West Course opened in 1914, two years after the more-famous East Course.

What's the status?: The 1930 U.S. Amateur at Merion was reportedly  the first time match standings signs were used to inform the gallery of the current status of a particular match.

U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur
Shadow Hawk Golf Club, Richmond, Texas
Sept. 10-15
www.uswmidam.org
Yardage
: 6,124 yards
Par: 36-36 — 72
Defending champion: Corey Weworski
Opened: 1999
Designer: Rees Jones

USGA championships: This is the first USGA competition to be played at the course, but the third Women's Mid-Amateur to be waged in Texas.

Other events: Shadow Hawk was a U.S. Open sectional qualifying site in 2004, where 1992 Open champion Tom Kite earned one of the two spots. Andy Sanders, a former University of Houston standout, owns the course record with a 62, which was shot during sectional qualifying for the 2000 U.S. Open at Pebble Beach. The club also held sectional qualifying in 2002.

First off the tee: Former President George Bush commenced the first official round at the course on Oct. 30, 1999. Bush is a member of the club, along with course designer Rees Jones and former Secretary of State James A. Baker III, who recorded a hole-in-one at the seventh hole in 2002. It was Baker's first ace and it was witnessed by Bush.

Rocket Man: Houston Astros pitcher and seven-time Cy Young Award winner Roger Clemens is a club member.

Two good: Three years ago, club member Perry Sendukas enjoyed a memorable moment at the par-5 finishing hole, when he holed a 4-wood for a double-eagle 2. Upon retrieving his ball, Sendukas promptly tossed it in the lake guarding the green so he could keep the cherished moment close to the location of his rare accomplishment.

Location, location, location: The club is situated 25 miles southwest of downtown Houston on 245 acres of property that winds through old Pecan trees and several large lakes. Despite being a relatively new club, Jones maintained an "old-school" approach to his design, creating small greens that are slightly elevated. He also kept the distances between the greens and teeing areas close to allow the course to be walking-friendly.

U.S. Mid-Amateur
The Honors Course, Chattanooga, Tenn.
Sept. 10-15
www.usmidam.org
Yardage
: 7,036 yards
Par: 36-36 - 72
Second stroke-play course: Black Creek, 6,947 yards.
Par: 36-36 - 72
Defending champion: Austin Eaton III
Opened: 1983
Designer: Pete Dye

USGA championships: The 1991 U.S. Amateur, won by Mitch Voges, and the 1994 Curtis Cup Match were played here. The course also served as the host site for the 1996 NCAA Division I Men's Championships, won individually by Tiger Woods. Five years earlier, Woods failed to qualify for match play at his first U.S. Amateur.

Protecting Nature: The Honors Course is one of nearly 2,000 golf facilities enrolled in the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program endorsed by the USGA. The program recognizes the importance of conservation and wildlife habitats. Much of the credit at The Honors goes to greenkeeper David Stone (1995 USGA Green Section Award winner), who roamed the Chattanooga valley to study the various native grasses. The result was a course full of different grasses, including fescue, zoysia, bent and broomsedge. A designated four-acre area is now set aside for Stone to experiment with different strains of bent and zoysia.

What's in a name: Club founder Jack Lupton chose to name his club The Honors Course as a tribute to amateur golf. Golf, after all, is a game of honor and integrity.

USGA Senior Amateur
The Farm Golf Club, Rocky Face, Ga.
Sept. 17-22
www.ussenioram.org
Yardage
: 6,734/6,763 yards
Par: 36-36 – 72
Defending champion: Mark Bemowski
Opened: 1988
Designer: Tom Fazio

USGA championships: This is the first USGA competition to be played here and the third Senior Amateur to be staged in Georgia.

Previous events: The Carpet Capital Collegiate, a men's major college event, has been played at The Farm since 1989. The club has also served as the site of qualifying for the U.S. Women's Open and the Senior Amateur. In addition, the 1990 Georgia Amateur (won by Allen Doyle); the 1997 Georgia Senior Amateur (won by Bill Ploeger of Columbus); the 1993 Southern Amateur (won by Justin Leonard); the 1996 Georgia Women's Amateur (won by Kim Lisi); the 2000 Georgia-South Carolina Junior Challenge Match; and the 2001 Georgia-Florida Team Match have been conducted at The Farm.

Historic site: The Battle of Rocky Face Ridge in May of 1864 was the first major confrontation in the "Atlanta Campaign" of Civil War General William T. Sherman. The confederates lost this battle.

USGA Senior Women's Amateur
The Apawamis Club, Rye, N.Y.
Sept. 17-22
www.seniorwam.org
Yardage
: 5,759/5,796 yards
Par: 36-36 - 72
Defending champion: Carolyn Creekmore
Opened: 1890
Designer: Willie Dunn Jr.

USGA championships: This is the USGA's fourth visit to Apawamis, following the 1911 U.S. Amateur, the 1970 U.S. Girls' Junior and 1978 Curtis Cup Match. Hollis Stacy won the second of her three consecutive Girls' Junior titles at Apawamis.

What's in a name: The club takes its name from a local Indian tribe with the motto meaning "present in peace and war." The motto appears in Latin within the club's logo. The club's seal features a crossed calumet pipe and quill pen along with an oyster. The symbols' meanings are not recorded but likely represent the Indian heritage of the club's name along with the literary interests of early members.

Going the distance . and more: In winning the 1911 U.S. Amateur at Apawamis, Harold Hilton needed 37 holes to defeat Fred Herreshoff. At the 37th hole, Hilton's approach shot hit a slope to the right of the green and bounced on to allow him to make par and take the championship.

Quotable: Ben Hogan once called Apawamis "the toughest short golf course I have ever played."

Why it's right: Perhaps it is appropriate that the USGA Senior Women's Amateur will be held at Apawamis, since former member Horace Hotchkiss started a tournament in 1905 for players 55 and over, calling it "the Seniors." This group of players eventually formed the United States Senior Golf Association and Apawamis maintains a special relationship with the organization.

Double trouble: The second hole has two greens and the USGA plans to use both for the championship, which can lengthen the course by 37 yards.

Golden day: The club celebrated its 50th anniversary with a special exhibition match, pitting the two best players at Apawamis, Leonard Martin and Ellis Knowles, against the top two pros of that era, Ben Hogan and Gene Sarazen. For Sarazen, who grew up in nearby Harrison, it was a homecoming as he once served as a caddie at Apawamis.

Willie's club: Willie Dunn is the architect who designed the course and former pro Willie Anderson is the only player in history to win three consecutive U.S. Open titles. The club's first pro also was named Willie, Scotsman Willie Davis. He was hired in 1900 and died two years later. From 1912 to 1922, Willie Portis served in that capacity.

Apawamis champions: Longtime member Findlay Douglas is one of four people to win the U.S. Amateur (1898) and also serve as president of the USGA (1929-30). He won the club championship at Apawamis six times from 1911-20 and later founded the National Golf Links of America. . Marion Choate won the second USGA Senior Women's Amateur title in 1963, defeating defending champion Maureen Orcutt in an 18-hole playoff that eventually wasn't decided until the third hole of "sudden death." Choate later captained the USA Curtis Cup team in 1974. . Before becoming a member at Apawamis, Jean Ashley Crawford defeated Anne Sander, 5 and 4, for the 1965 U.S. Women's Amateur title.

Beware of the greens: Tom Weiskopf once told Jack Nicklaus that "if you can putt the Apawamis greens, you can putt the greens on any course." Apawamis lore is filled with stories about players who have four-putted the treacherous green at the fourth hole from as little as 2 feet away. Players have also been known to putt balls off the green and into the creek at holes 11 and 13.

USGA State Team Championships
Berkeley Hall, Bluffton, S.C.
Sept. 27-29
www.stateteam.org
Yardage
: 6,115 yards (North Course, Women), 7,073 (South Course, Men)
Par: 36-37-73 (North); 36-36-72 (South)
Defending champion: Tennessee (men), Ohio (women)
Opened: 2001 (North Course), 2002 (South Course)
Designer: Tom Fazio (both courses)

USGA championships: This is the first visit to Berkeley Hall by the USGA, but it was used as a practice site in 2002 for prospective 2003 USA Walker Cup team players.

Pure golf: Although constructed as a residential/golf community, all of the infrastructure - homes, roads, etc. - are kept on the periphery of the facility, giving members two "core" courses to play. Players are not disturbed by homes or are they subjected to long walks between holes.

Practice makes perfect: Few facilities in the country can match the practice area at Berkeley Hall, a 30-acre plot that caters to every area of a player's game. Range rats might think this is golf heaven.

Players club: Several Berkeley Hall members have impressive golf résumés, including 1989 U.S. Mid-Amateur champion Jim Taylor and former USA Walker Cuppers Duke Delcher (1997) and Tom McKnight (1999). McKnight, who recently earned his 2005 Champions Tour card, also was the 1998 U.S. Amateur runner-up and a 1998 USA World Amateur Team participant. Another member, Jim Ferree, competed on the PGA and Champions tour, while his wife, Karen, is an accomplished amateur, who has played in the first five USGA Women's State Teams for South Carolina.

Information compiled by USGA staff writer David Shefter.

Partner Links
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Chevron
   

The USGA and Chevron have committed to using the game of golf to encourage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) disciplines. This commitment has led to the creation of extensive golf-focused STEM teaching tools, and has resulted in charitable contributions to support golf-related programs through Eagles for Education™

At U.S. Open Championships the Chevron STEM ZONE™ is an interactive experience highlighting the science and math behind the game of golf through a variety of hands-on exhibits and experiments.

The partnership has also produced educational materials such as the Science of Golf video series and a nationally-distributed newspaper insert which are provided to teachers as tools to enhance existing curriculum in schools. These lessons teach the science behind the USGA’s equipment testing, handicapping, and agronomy efforts.

For more interactive experiences featuring golf-focused STEM lessons, visit the partnership homepage.


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Rolex
   

Rolex has been a longtime supporter of the USGA and salutes the sportsmanship and great traditions unique to the game. This support includes the Rules of Golf where Rolex has partnered with the USGA to ensure golfers understand and appreciate the game.

As the official timekeeper of the USGA and its championships, they also provide clocks throughout host sites for spectator convenience.

For more information on Rolex and their celebration of the game, visit the Rolex and Golf homepage.



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IBM has partnered with the USGA to bring the same technology, expertise, and innovation it provides to businesses all over the world to the USGA and golf's national championship.

IBM provides the information technology to develop and host the U.S. Open’s official website, www.usopen.com, as well as the mobile apps and scoring systems for the three U.S. Open championships. These real-time technology solutions provide an enhanced experience for fans following the championship onsite and online.

For more information on IBM and the technology that powers the U.S. Open and businesses worldwide, visit http://www.usopen.com/IBM

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Lexus is committed to partnering with the USGA to deliver a best-in-class experience for the world’s best golfers by providing a fleet of courtesy luxury vehicles for all USGA Championships.

At each U.S. Open, Women’s Open and Senior Open, Lexus provides spectators with access to unique experiences ranging from the opportunity to have a picture taken with both the U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open trophies to autograph signings with legendary Lexus Golf Ambassadors in the Lexus Performance Drive Pavilion.

For more information on Lexus, visit http://www.lexus.com/

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Together, American Express and the USGA have been providing world-class service to golf fans since 2006. By creating interactive U.S. Open experiences both onsite and online, American Express enhances the USGA’s effort to make the game more accessible and enjoyable for fans.

For more information on American Express visit www.americanexpress.com/entertainment


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