Monday, March 28, 2011

Greenbrier's Old White Course Becomes a TPC

Here is excerpt of the press release on the surprising alignment between The Greenbrier resort and the PGA Tour.

"The PGA TOUR announced today that The Old White Course at The Greenbrier in White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia, is now part of the TPC Network of clubs as part of a licensing agreement for the property. One of four championship layouts at the historic Greenbrier, the newly named The Old White TPC serves as host site of the TOUR’s Greenbrier Classic, which will be played July 25 – 31, 2011.

"Included in the TPC relationship is management consultation from PGA TOUR. As part of that, 30-year golf industry veteran Burton Baine has been hired to be on property to advise the owner regarding day to day golf course operations."

Interesting that the press release does not mention that Lester George renovated Old White, a 1924 Charles Blair Macdonald design, prior to last year's tournament. A link to my interview with George about the course and his work can be found here.

The press release gives a slight tip of the cap to the original architect but fails to mention Seth Raynor, protege of Macdonald, also did a major upgrade that was completed after his death by his partner, Charles Banks.

"Macdonald, a dominant figure in the early history of American golf, took advantage of the topography’s undulating terrain to create a challenging and visually stunning layout that pays tribute to some of the most famous European holes in golf. The Old White TPC’s No. 8 hole was styled after the Redan at North Berwick, No. 13 after the Alps at Prestwick, and No. 15 after the Eden at St. Andrews."

Other courses at The Greenbrier are the Dick Wilson/Bob Cupp-designed Meadows Course and the Greenbrier Course, which was originally designed by Seth Raynor and re-designed by Jack Nicklaus in 1977, as well as The Snead, a private membership layout designed by Tom Fazio.

(Photo by Stephen Szurlej)

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