Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Getting On Private Courses

Look at the left side of this blog. You will notice 22 courses in North America that C+C have designed (not counting their renovation work, individual designs, etc.) and a full 11 of which are private. Private golf courses in the United States are almost NEVER opened to the hoi polloi and only if you scrounge a friendship, a business connection or go to a charity event do the rest of us get to peer inside the gate.

Many people have lifted the curtain on courses in print and on the web but very few people tell you HOW they got onto these tracks. I have started the process with my own Cypress Point Quest but John Sabino has really upped the ante with his recently released book "How To Play The World's Most Exclusive Golf Clubs" and boy does he take you all over the world and how to get into these places.

This "how to" knowledge is key when accessing C+C courses like Sand Hills (pictured above). John breaks down throughout the book how he got invites to courses, tips and tricks including fascinating 21st century tricks that even for me as an old hand of the Twitterverse made me perk up my ears.

What all these techniques come down to are establishing personal connections but John offers novel ways to make them happen. The real problem when undertaking a quest like this is geography. The private courses are spread from Tahoe to New Jersey, from Georgia to New York. I am based in California and while I come from the East Coast, I have limited contacts in most places and clearly I need to up my networking game by connecting with people in the same geographic locale as the courses.

So what have I been doing so far? I have written letters, I have made connections through Twitter and I am keeping my ears open at the private clubs I am lucky enough to play to see if there are multiple members. Whether this gets me to 22 or not remains to be seen but I bet I will take a healthy chunk out of the list in the next few years.

John's book will put on the right track to making those connections and I highly recommend you checking it out!

Check out John's review of some C+C courses:

Sand Hills:
Friar's Head:

Want to buy John's book? Check it out here:

All pictures are taken from Mr. Sabino's book are for review and commentary purposes only. All copyrights in such work belong to him. Check out his book and blog for some great golf reading! 

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Coore Crenshaw Quest Update! 2016 Plans

As all three readers of this blog knows, I am on a quest to play as many of the Coore-Crenshaw designed golf courses as I possibly can.

This year I am really ramping up my C+C game and thought I would update you guys on what is going on!

In a month I am going on an Arizona golf adventure and will be knocking off 3, count em 3, Coore-Crenshaw courses, We-Ko-Pa and the two courses at Talking Stick. I have never played golf in Arizona and I am expecting hot, heaping, heat but also great golf courses.

Next up, and BIG news, I have been invited to play at Sand Hills Golf Club!!!! I am beyond excited and have been bouncing off the walls since the invite. So many people say its a golf-life changing experience and I can't wait to experience it for myself!

Part of my Sand Hills trip will take me through Colorado and if I can manage it, I am hoping to get a round in at Colorado Golf Club, which sounds like an ultra-hard C+C track. This hopefully won't be my only trip to the heartland this year as Sand Valley is having a soft opening for its CC course in Wisconsin and I hope I get to see it in person!

Finally, my in-laws live in Texas. I love Texas golf and Texas in general, it really is a country onto itself in many ways which I find fascinating. What is also fascinating is that Texas has 3 Coore/Crenshaw tracks and I am hoping to play Barton Creek and figure out a way to play Trinity Forest which is opening in Dallas this Fall.

In summary: Coore/Crenshaw courses played so far 1 of 22. Definitely will be played after this year 6 of 22. Maybe possibly if I am a good boy will have played by the end of the year? 9 of 22! Wish me luck and if you do have any inroads to Coore/Crenshaw courses send them my way to!