MVCC leadership has decided to include a complete redesign/re-build of hole #2 as part of phase I of our golf course improvement project. As called for in the master plan hole #2 will be restored as a Seth Raynor REDAN template hole. Some have asked – what is a REDAN and why is it so important? Thus in this post we will seek to answer these questions.
On a Seth Raynor designed course you will consistently find some or all of his “Mount Rushmore” of par three template holes… REDAN, BIARITTZ, SHORT, EDEN. These strategic and interesting par 3 designs align with Raynors architectural philosophy, passed down from CB Macdonald, that the one shot holes should be varied in yardage and thus test the players abilty with different clubs. The typical back tee yardage for each is… SHORT 130-150 EDEN 150-175 REDAN 180 -210 BIARITTZ 215-240.
Having all 4 is coveted and there are ongoing discussions as to which Raynor Course has the best overall collection and individually… best in class.
Revered and Replicated
The template one shot hole designs are widely considered the foundation of a Raynor course and the established cornerstone is clearly the REDAN for CB Macdonald (Raynors Mentor) said:
“I consider the REDAN to be the finest one shot hole in the world, and on any golf course where one has freedom in choice there should always be a REDAN placed.”
Macdonalds perspective has stood the test of time as the REDAN has become the most widely replicated design of all classic/template holes found on hundreds of courses worldwide. It is religiously revered by architects, prominent players, and those who evaluate/rate courses as the finest par 3 design in the world… because of its strategic options and unique features.
Golfs supreme shotmaker and strategic tactician, Ben Hogan, called the REDAN @ Riviera Country Club just that… “the best par 3 in the world.” Macdonalds original version at National Golf Links is consistently recognized as not only the most true to original (North Berwick), but also the best REDAN in America and one of the best Par 3s in the world.
National Golf Links REDAN
The REDAN… Overtly Raynor
“Seth Raynor used to do Redans everywhere he did a golf course. He built similar things at courses everywhere he went, and he built Redans everywhere in particular.”
Pete Dye – Respected Modern Course Architect/Mac-Raynor Fan
Raynor was known for studiously studying and reverently respecting his mentors design practices/philophies. Thus it is no surprise that he consistently included a REDAN on his courses. Yet Raynors REDANS often noticeably varied from Macdonalds classic at National Golf Links, leading many to speculate that CB had requested this of his protege.
Another reason could be that the width of land and/or budget $$ needed to mirror the original at North Berwick or Macdonalds NGL version was usually not available. From the edge of the far right green high bunker to the end of the short grass left of the green at NGLs REDAN… it is around 100 yards!
Raynors Best REDANS:
Camargo Club in Ohio usually is at the top of most lists for the best overall collection of Raynor par 3 template holes. Its REDAN, the 192 yard 15th along with the 190 yard 6th at Yeamans Hall and the 187 yard 3rd at Piping Rock are consistently included in the short list of Raynors Best REDANS.
Raynors Hardest REDANS:
A young Sam Snead made a 13 during a prestigious tournament on CC of Charlestons REDAN… historically one of the hardest.
Two other extremely challenging REDANS are often not directly associated with Raynor, even though he designed/built them… the 207 yard 7th @ Chicago Golf Club and the 189 yard 7th @ Shinnecock Hills which will be featured in the 2018 United States Open.
Raynors Shorter REDANS:
The 172 yard 7th at the Top Rated Raynor course Fishers Island, and the 160 yard 11th at Highly Rated Mountain Lake Country Club in Florida are great holes even though they are shorter than the usual REDAN yardage. Both have functional-firm kick slopes which enhance the fun.
Raynors Reverse REDANS:
Same REDAN Strategy yet opposite orientation is found at Fox Chapels 192 yard 6th, St Louis Country Clubs 185 yard 6th, Creek Clubs 185 yard 8th, and Sleepy Hollows 217 yard 7th.
Raynors Linksiest REDANS:
The REDANS which most promote and provide the opportunity for a links style on the ground runup shot are the 185 yard 13th at Blue Mound Golf & CC and Mid Ocean Clubs 203 yard 17th.
Brian Silva, a respected Raynor Resoration architect designed a reverse REDAN at Black Creek Club in Chattanooga TN. Silva wanted the 239 yard 7th to play like Macdonald/Raynors original intention in the early 1900’s. Thus the length and massive kick slope… both which promote a links style on the ground running shot to get anywhere near the pin!
15th Hole at North Berwick Golf Club (East Course) East Lothian, Scotland
Deep bunker guards direct frontal attack. Also deep bunkering beyond short side of green and normally a “framing” bunker positioned 25-50 yards short of green in line of play to front right portion of green.
Oriented at 45% angle to tee, slopes Front to back… tilted from front right to back left usually severely, high shoulder called a “kick slope” is part of and along right side of green which sometimes extends 20+yards from green edge, designed to deflect balls onto narrow back left portion of green.
Misc REDAN Links