The U.S. Open Setup

October 29, 2008

The USGA selects venues for the U.S. Open that rank among the most challenging in the U.S. We intend that the U.S. Open prove the most rigorous examination of golfers. A U.S. Open course should test all forms of shotmaking, mental tenacity, and physical endurance under conditions of extreme pressure. At the same time, we try to ensure that a well-played stroke produces a positive result. We formulate a detailed plan for conducting the Open, but unanticipated variations in weather and other conditions may force consideration of daily adjustments.

The following factors impact U.S. Open course setup. The mix of these varies from course to course, year to year. Evaluation of course setup should not focus on any single element but consider the composite result. The factors are:

  • 1.      Length, variation and playing characteristics of individual holes;
  • 2.      Length of overall golf course relative to total par;
  • 3.      Teeing ground locations (i.e., angles of play, variation of distance day to day);
  • 4.      Fairway width and contours;
  • 5.      Fairway firmness and speed;
  • 6.      Green speed relative to percentage slopes and contours of the putting greens;
  • 7.      Putting green firmness;
  • 8.      Rough height, density and stages of severity;
  • 9.      Bunker preparation (i.e., create challenge of recovery);
  • 10.  Surrounds (e.g., closely mown areas vs. primary rough);
  • 11.  Hole locations (relative difficulty, balance in location of left vs. right, front vs. back of green, anticipated wind, anticipated length of approach shot);
  • 12.  Risk and reward options;
  • 13.  Anticipated weather conditions;
  • 14.  Pace of Play

    In addition, the championship will arrange the U.S. Open primary rough cut at different heights, determined by the hole and its yardage. 

    Each hole also will have two distinct cuts in the primary rough.  Generally speaking, a show that barely trickles into the primary rough won't be as severely punished as one that misses the fairway by 15 yards.

    There is no target score for a U.S. Open.  While the final score at some U.S. Open sites will be at or near par, the USGA does not try to formulate a course setup that will only produce a winning score of at or near even par.  Our goal is to provide everyone attending a U.S. Open with the finest experience possible.
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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 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.

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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.

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