Proper Golf

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Caddy Cheat Sheet at Quaker Ridge

#11 at Quaker Ridge.. My favorite hole on my home course

I wrote this for a friend, who is coming to town to give them a bit of a head start on the season... Seemed like it might make for an interesting way for others to think about playing a top-100 course from a different perspective. There is a guide to playing each hole, tips on how to be a really good caddy, and more.


... I am sure I will have lots more tricks and things to say on the subject, but this is the best I can do off the top of my head at the moment... I hope you have lots of fun and make tons of money!

Quaker Ridge
146 Griffen Ave
Scarsdale, NY

- Fridays and Weekends I try to sign in between 6-6:15 (I always eat breakfast in the caddy yard to save time)
- Weekdays 6:30-6:45 is fine
- Always stay till at least 3:30
- ... The higher on the sign in sheet your name is, the more loops you will get
- ... Try your best to wait out the rain... just make sure you can get a ride home w your bike!
- On Sundays, make sure you ask about outings on Mondays... Outings are the biggest pay days and a reward for good work

Bring snacks or extra lunch... Always need extra energy
- caddy lunch is free, but never enough!
- Lots of caddy's drive to pick up lunch... ask to join or to get you something

Things to always have in locker
- extra socks
- extra towel
- extra khaki shorts and white polo shirt
- Golf shoes
- sunscreen
- battery for laser
- rain gear

Par-3 #9 at Quaker Ridge

Pre Round
- Always have a wet towel
- Must Tees, Scorecards, Pencils, Divot fixer and Ball Markers (loose coins always work really well) in pockets
- Count 14 clubs and clean (finding out you dont have a putter on #1 green is never good)
- Check bag for old water bottles, and take out extra weight garbage.. You can ask to remove rain gear and umbrellas on sunny days
- Ask if you can put the driver and putter head cover in the bag
- Test laser is working

On Course
- Call for provisional on all balls that are close... never feel bad about making a player hit a 2nd tee shot!
- Stand on right side of player with bag
- Clean club after every shot
- Put back divots
- Get pin
- Rake bunkers
- Offer to wipe the ball on every green
- I always give a yardage, I don't pick clubs... they cant blame you!
- If you don't know how a putt breaks... ask what they think, and adjust it slightly
- Try to always be positive.. point out there is lots of room on the right, not that there is a hazard on left
- Good questions to ask members if you are having trouble connecting... Mr. X what is your favorite hole? Ask if they have ever been to Scotland (since you have played so much)... Ask what they thought about the Masters or Tiger Woods.. Ask what they think about the renovation, Gil Hanse and the new greens

Hole #1
- Left side is best on layup
- Bunker is 60 yards short of green
- Add 10 yards to all approach shots
- Add even 5 more yards distance to pins in back right (all carry)
- Hand drivers to players, note if the pin is left or right on #14 when you cut across to forecaddy
- Ask for a bottle of water

Hole #2
- Hard to see in morning with the sun, go further out to see around corner
- Short is better than long
- Drop bags on far side of green, bring drivers onto green so you can forecaddy

Hole #3 (worst hole on course)
- Add 5 yard to approach on right
- Only out of bounds left on golf course, nursery is a free drop
- Green slopes hard right to left

Hole #4
- Line off the tee is the left edge of green
- Make sure you can see over mound and down the hill when you forecaddy on #4
- Be ready to yell FORE on #12!!!
- Layup 60 yards short to avoid slope and bunkers
- Everything breaks to the water side
- Shorter approach on right, longer on left

Hole #5
- Wind is always swirling
- Note if pin is front or back of the ridge
- Best drop zone is from the ladies tee 113 yards
- Trees right of cartpath is Out of Bounds, hit another from tee its impossible to see over there

Hole #6 (no 1 handicap, but 7 is harder)
- Some people go out to forecaddy by 2nd bridge on the left... I always find it super hard to see the ball from over there, so I normally just stay on the tee, but stand all the way on the left... There is still OB right, so you may have to play provisional
- Always add at least 1 club for the up-hill on approach
- Bunkers are 120 yards short of green for picking a layup distance

Hole #7 (The real hardest hole on golf course)
- It is very important for someone to forecaddy on this hole. The tree on left gives the best angle see around the corner
- If you are dropping clubs on the tee, leave both 3-wood and driver
- Subtract 15 yards for the layup to creek. Plays way downhill, its better to be WAY short. To go over the bunkers from the creek, its an extra 40 yards of carry
- Approach shots should add 10 yards, and never play to a front pin
- The telephone poll in middle is always the target... missing right of the right green bunker is KAPUT!

Hole #8
- Left side of tee is safer
- 250 yards to carry the mounds w drive
- Only go right for a left pin
- Green is super flat

Hole #9
- Plays like redan, Right is dead
- Always play middle distance, to center of green... Never play to front pin, and it is longer carry over bunker to the left side
- Use the big American flag to check what the wind is doing by green, cant feel on green

- If someone offers you something from the halfway house, always say YES and THANK YOU ... get a gatorade or banana or power bar... never feel bad about taking them up on their offer

Hole #10 (A very under-rated golf hole, this one grew on me a lot)
- Check American flag for wind
- Green slopes HARD left-right
- Add 1/2 club to pins on right because of green angle
- Never play to front pin... always play past

Hole #11 (My favorite)
- Sometimes people forecaddy from the forward tees across the creek
- Do not need driver from tee for good players
- Be ready to yell FORE on #16
- Most balls end up by shagging tree between 11-16
- Aim for right 1/2 of fairway
- Aim for left side of green... its a shorter carry and the slope of green helps
- In front of green, the creek is YELLOW, you can drop as far back as you want on line it went into water
- Missing green way right is actually a good angle for chipping
- Don't drop bags in the creek!!!

Hole #12
- Sometimes people forecaddy from the end of the cartpath
- Make sure you can see the pond on the left... lots of hooks in!!... RED STAKE drop from point of entry 2 club lengths
- Add 1 club on approach uphill
- Do not miss long

Hole #13 (Tillinghast template called the Reef Hole)
- I do NOT think it plays downhill
- You can run it only green with a punch over bunker 40 yards short of green
- Miss left
- Right is dead
- Green is faster uphill
- Everything breaks to the front right corner

- If there is nobody in front, sometimes tee shots on #14 are played to save a walk back before you putt on #13

Double Dogleg par-5 #14 at Quaker Ridge

Hole #14 (Double Dogleg par-5... Tillinghast Template of Bethpage Black #4, Baltusrol, Fenway #3 and Pine Valley )
- Always Forecaddy near the creek
- Best layup is on Right ... fairway ends at 145 yards
- Add 40 yards to carry over bunkers for uphill and angle... shorter on left
- Approach from short of the bunker looks uphill, but plays FLAT
- Remember where pin is from forecaddy on #2
- Use the U shape gap in the trees to help aim
- Hidden break on very left side of green... moves to the center of the green, away from bunker

- If your players are on the green, you can drop the bags for #15 walk back, GRAB 3-WOOD and DRIVER

Hole #15 (Great fairway, new greenside bunker shapes are not my favorite. Tree clearing behind green has significantly improved the hole)
- 250 to creek from tee... DOWNHILL... hit 230 max
- 125 + 1 club from end of fairway
- RED STAKES Left of fairway
- Be ready to yell FORE ON 17!!!
- Always play for middle or left of green... Right pin is sucker
- Never miss long
- Putts over mound, never come back all the way

Hole #16 (16 and 18 are boring)
- Sometimes people forecaddy on left by creek
- Be ready to yell FORE ON #11!! ... sometimes play down #11!!
- Left is dead
- Add 1 club on approach
- Is the pin on back shelf?
- Hidden break uphill middle left side

Hole #17 (I hit 3-wood)
- Do not need driver
- Sometimes people forecaddy by read tree
- 210 to stay short of bunkers
- Everyone misses and gets blocked by trees on right... just chip out!... sometimes play down #18!
- Wind always seems to be in face on approach
- Add 1/2 club for left side of green... lands on downslope and kicks

Hole #18 (The other best hole on the course :) !!!! ) ... right greenside bunker is not original, members wont let Gil take it out
- Forecaddy at the end of the ridge where you can see down the hill
- Should NEVER be in the fairway bunker
- Add 1 club uphill to green
- Lots of room left to layup
- Balls always seem to run through green
- Take off hat, and shake hands with everyone

After Round
- Ask the player to check the clubs
- Ask if they clubs are staying or going
- If they are a guest, ask if they would like the clubs left out or taken to the car (TRY TO TAKE TO CAR... you get more tips!)
- Double check head covers, and clean clubs
- Put clubs back on rack
- Grab lunch ticket
- Wait for 2nd loop
- Repeat!!!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Review: Deepdale Golf Club

Deepdale Golf Club, 1956
Architect: Dick Wilson
Manhasset, NY

Deepdale @ Lake Success, 1926 - 1954 (No longer Exists)
Architect: Charles Blair Macdonald, Seth Raynor and Charles Banks

A Google Earth aerial photo of the current Deepdale layout by Dick Wilson shows the excessive amount of sharp doglegs and the Long Island Expressway which has played a significant role in the clubs history.

A plan view of the original course (scanned from George Bahto's Macdonald biography, The Evangelist of Golf ) shows the lake side location 30 minutes from NYC. This course was located just on the southern side of the LIE, a few holes are probably buried somewhere under the asphalt.

Deepdale Golf Club has always been one of the more exclusive clubs around New York City/The World!. Originally developed by a member of the Vanderbilt family, the club was founded to provide a quick escape for those who needed their golf fix during the week, and in between the long trek to The Hamptons. For the first 30 years of the club, the course was located on Lake Success and built by the trio of Charles Banks, Seth Raynor and Charles Blair Macdonald in 1926, but that was before the Long Island Expressway (LIE) existed. The remains of that course are now known as the Village of Lake Success Golf Club. Deepdale moved across the street in the 50's and the Dick Wilson design we know today opened in 1956.

The tee shots at #2, #7 and # 14 are good examples of what you face on nearly every tee. You probably wont be able to see the green, or even approach, but you will have a good look at the hazards which guard the inside of almost every hole.

The golf course is known mostly for its exclusivity and conditioning, but the architecture itself is mostly defined by its incredibly steep greens, puzzle piece shaped bunkers as typical of Wilson(think Doral Blue Monster), and tons of sharp doglegs. Most of the interesting shots you will on this course are either cutting corners off the tee, or negotiating the sloping greens. The holes do not vary to much in strategy or setting, there is a bit of a monotonous feel to the course; inside corner, short of the pin, uphill putt, would certainly be the montra of Deepdale. I did find the back nine, which has more elevation change and greens that have more side-to-side movement seemed to be a little more interesting and memorable. At the end of the day, Deepdale, is a good golf course, with a lot of good holes, but nothing that is going to stand out as truely great.

The greens at #12 and #15 are some of the steepest on the course, and no doubt boarder on unplayable when running at full speed. #'s 8, 10 and 13 are also among the best on the course. Deepdale's putting surface's are certainly interesting, I just wish they related more to the rest of hole.

Next Stop: Dismal River (Mullen, Nebraska)

Course #7: San Francisco Golf Club #12... A.W. Tillinghast's best course

After a 2 month stretch where I saw 36 different golf courses (listed bellow) I am moving to Dismal River Golf Club in Mullen, Nebraska. This will be part-2 of the Renaissance Golf Design construction phase. Not exactly sure what I am in for yet, but I'm sure it will involve a lot of landscape rakes and sand dunes!

To see pictures from the project in Mullen, Nebraska check out the Renaissance Golf Design website:

Want to know more about our famous neighbors Sand Hills Golf Club always ranked #1 Modern Golf Course... This YouTube video is amazing!

For more information on the new course at Dismal River:

Here are 2 links to an golf architecture website called with pictures of the site and some of the construction work that had begun. I do not recommend reading all of it, as its lots of bs from random internet nerds, Doak writes a bunch, and so does Chris Johnson who is owner #3...

What they dont explain is this project is super low on money, and has gone bankrupt 2x. Looks like I will be doing a lot of hand raking...

Pictures are scattered through the pages on each thread.

Course #1: Crystal Downs by Alister Mackenzie and Perry Maxwell... The best front 9 holes seen to date

A litsting of the 36 courses in 2 months:
(30 played and 6 walked)

Crystal Down, Michigan (walk 27)

Piping Rock, New York (walk)
Friars Head, New York (walk)
National Golf Links of America, New York(walk)
Sebonack, New York (walk)

Course #4: National Golf Links of America

Sharp Park, California
San Francisco Golf Club, California
Orinda CC, California
Mira Vista, California
Pasatiempo, California
Stanford, California
Harding Park, California
California Club of San Francisco, California (27 holes)
Meadow Club, California
Claremont, California

West Hill, England
The Addington, England (36 holes)
St. Georges Hill, England (27 holes)
Walton Heath: Old, England
Walton Heath: New, England (9 holes)
Worplesdon, England
Queenwood, England
Royal Ashdown Forest: Old, England
Royal Cinque Ports, England (36 holes)
Swinley Forest, England

Grand Cypress: North South East, Florida (54 holes)
Grand Cypress: New, Florida (27 holes)
Lake Nona, Florida (Tavistock Cup tournament)

Split Rock, New York
Deepdale, New York
Marine Park, New York
North Shore, New York
Atlantic, New York (walk)
Shackamaxon, New Jersey
Forsgate: Banks, New Jersey
Quaker Ridge, New York (27 holes)