This 13-year-old's meticulous course plan is a Cool Golf Thing

Start 'em young.
Putting ideas for a golf course on paper can help lay the foundation for the construction of great layouts of all time. Here, Bobby Jones and Wendell Miller survey what would become Augusta National Golf Club.

Kids these days. Spending hours drawing golf courses rather than playing video games.

Or at least that's the case of 13-year-old Ben, whose mother Carrie shared his latest golf course drawing, prompting it to go viral on Twitter last week.

Lots of folks doodle golf courses on paper. I used to get in trouble for shirking elementary school classwork in order to map out greens and bunkers. But what puts young Ben's design on another level is its sophistication. He didn't draw this course in the vacuum of a blank piece of computer paper. Rather, he laid it out on a real topographical map; note the squiggly contour lines running through it.

For instance, the very first hole is a clever dogleg-right with a reverse-camber fairway. In other words, even though it bends to the right, it slopes to the left, meaning players will be challenged to shape their tee shots against the slope before they contend with an uneven lie for their first approach. The pitch of the fairway may also discourage bombers from smashing a tee shot over the fairway bunker, lest they find themselves out of position on the approach to a well-bunkered green.

Ben also seems to have done a nice job of taking what the "land" has given him. The imbalanced par of his two nines - par 34, then par 37 - might rankle those obsessed with order, but there is a strong precedent for excellent courses with that exact combination. One of my favorites is Shuttle Meadow Country Club in Kensington, Conn., which starts with its par-37 side before coming home in 34.

This project shows a keen eye and attention to detail that any future golf course design client of Ben's will likely appreciate.

You're going places, kid.

1 Min Read
January 17, 2020
Play in the dirt in your mind.

Tim Gavrich is a Senior Writer for GolfPass. Follow him on Twitter @TimGavrich and on Instagram @TimGavrich.
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This 13-year-old's meticulous course plan is a Cool Golf Thing