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Top 100 Golf Courses "BiteSize" - August 2016

Earlier this month, Brazil’s Adilson da Silva hit the first golf ball in the Olympics since 1904. Despite a number of big-name male no-shows, the return of golf to the Games proved not only successful, but also captivating. Congratulations to gold medallists Justin Rose and Inbee Park, both of whom must have enjoyed Gil Hanse’s new creation which we will experience first-hand over the coming weeks.

In this month’s Top 100 BiteSize we applaud Rudo’s incredible World Top 100 “Ever” achievement and we present an insight into how it’s possible to tee it up at the most exclusive golf clubs. We also feature a handful of engaging course reviews posted recently.

Rudo completes the World Top 100 “Ever” list

Playing the World Top 100 Ever list involved conquering 317 courses (including the MacWood Spoof list) in 37 different countries. An eye-watering number of air miles later, only one person in the entire world can say, “I’ve done it”. Paul Rudovsky’s adventure recently concluded in Nova Scotia with a round at Cabot Cliffs. We put our hands together for Rudo and throw down the gauntlet to anyone crazy enough to walk in his footsteps.

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How to play the world’s most exclusive golf clubs

Another self-confessed golf nut named John Sabino set off a few years ago “in pursuit of golf’s Holy Grail”, his task was to play the World Top 100. He wrote a blog as he progressed along his golfing journey before being approached by a book publisher to write about how he gained access to some of the most exclusive golf clubs in the world.

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Flommen – review by Daniel

Wetland links may be an oxymoron, but it comes close at Flommen, at least during the summer months when the water table is lower and the springy turf hardens. This is especially true for the holes closest to the dune ridge separating the course from the public beach. The wetland part is true all months of the year and on all holes most of the time, with water lining either left or right of the fairway or green, but never unfairly so, you always feel like you have a choice whether to take on the water or to play it more safe.

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Saunton (East) – review by James

Hunkered behind the dunes, not far from the eternal and perpetual Atlantic lies one of the most under rated and under visited links courses of our Islands. This is a sleeping behemoth bypassed by the ticker tape badge collectors but adored by the cognoscenti. Long may it be so… Head west on the Atlantic links trail and be seduced by the whisper of the relentless Atlantic.

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Newcastle – review by Grant

15th in the nation is about right for Newcastle. This is an extremely good golf course… It is difficult - precision driving and precision iron play will be rewarded with good scores. I struggled with the poa greens, and wonder about a couple of design features (the trees which obscure the fairway on 14, the blindness of the tee shot on 15) but each and every hole to that point is strong, with no weak shots anywhere. The stretch of 4 through 11 is I think as good as anything in Australia.

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Lofoten Links – review by Martyn

There was some issue with grass growth on some tees and new greens but it’s the Arctic Circle so not a surprise but from the condition of the more established holes this will sort itself in time. Did this matter? Not a bit! I was playing golf in the Arctic Circle with blue skies a fresh breeze and 75 degree temperatures. Life doesn't get a whole lot better.

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Prestwick – review by Javier

Sometimes you make big mistakes in your life but the best part is when you learn from them. I visited Scotland in 2011 & 2012 leading 32 golfers each year and when planning the trip I didn't include Prestwick, which was maybe the biggest mistake and I made it twice! But life and also golf gives you chances to correct your own mistakes and 3 weeks ago I was able to fix mine finally visiting and playing Prestwick.

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Winston (Links) – review by Ulrich

This course is not big, it's B-I-G and the design is absolutely spectacular. None of the holes can be conquered with routine strategies, there are no boring connector shots and the severity is not at all simplistic. Instead, there are so many purpose-built features that it is actually unlikely that errant balls will end up in an "undesigned" place. If you have an arsenal of creative recovery shots or want to develop one, this is your playground.

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Milano (1st & 2nd) – review by Reinout

Golf Club Milano offers a rare moment of tranquility in the Metropole of Milan. Situated north of Milan in the park of Monza it is the venue of the Italian Open of 2016. I played the course (1st and 2nd 9-holes) 4 weeks ahead of the event and the course was in very good condition. The fairways were good, if not cut a little long for my taste, but the greens were immaculate (but also cut a little long to be really fast, probably to protect them for the event).

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Cape Wickham – review by Michael

I first became aware of Cape Wickham while playing with to be architect Mike De Vries at his Kingsley Club when he told me he had just returned from a site visit to a place that would produce one if the most spectacular courses on the planet. At that point the job was not his but when he did indeed get the job he kept me informed with progress pictures as the project came to fruition.

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Ohio State University (Scarlet) – review by Fergal

I was hugely sceptical about this course. For starters, I haven’t met a Nicklaus course that I enjoyed. I could count on one hand the number of Nicklaus courses that got a second date with me. Add in the fact that a few years ago, Jack “restored” this Alister MacKenzie course; I debated not getting out of my car. Jack is not the first person you call when you want to tinker in any way with a MacKenzie course.

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Have you downloaded our Scottish publication yet?

Top 100 Golf Courses of Scotland 2016-2017 was recently published in Kindle format, which can be enjoyed on any device with Kindle’s free App. This latest title in the Top 100 series is jam-packed full of previously unreleased material and it includes an insight from our Editor and Scottish Correspondent, Jim McCann, who has played every layout in the Scottish hundred.

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Recent Player Reviews

Have you played any Top Golf Courses recently?

If so, we'd love to hear from you, so why not post a review and share your experience? If you took a great photo during your visit, email it to info@top100golfcourses.co.uk and we'll include it within your review. Don't forget you can now have your own personalised Reviewers page on the Top 100 website.