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Noteworthy NCGA POPPY HILLS RENOVATION COMMENCES Before Poppy Hills closed for renovation, architect Robert Trent


Jones, Jr. wanted to take the last swing at the course he designed in 1986. As he lined up his final approach shot into the dramatic ninth green, he reflected on a place that is very special to him.


“I feel deep nostalgia,”


Jones said. “When I walked the course one more time, all sorts of memories flooded back. I remember working with my dad in this area at Spyglass in the 60s.” Jones uncorked his final


swing, closing the most recent chapter in Poppy Hills’ his- tory. The course hosted its final rounds of play in 2013 on Sun- day, March 10, and is scheduled to re-open in April of 2014. “We’re going to preserve


what’s great about it, update what should be modernized, and at the end of the day, we should have a renaissance at Poppy Hills,” Jones said. Jones speaks highly of the


opportunity to be a part of a project that produced the first course owned by a golf association in the country. He also can’t wait to see how the upgraded version of Poppy Hills will play in 2014. “All golf courses are changed


over time, even the greatest ones, like Augusta,” Jones said. “This is a great privilege to come back and update our work. “I know it. I know what’s


underneath it. It’s like a surgeon


with a patient. So we cut into it, but we are going to be very careful to preserve the good things about it, the qualities and the character that every- body loves and respects.” Golfers who played from


the back tee box of the 11th hole at Poppy Hills during its final month were teased with a glimpse of what the renova- tion will add to the NCGA Member Course. If golfers looked to their left


while standing on that tee box, they saw a clearing cut through a thick grouping of trees, creat- ing a window that framed the 12th fairway, the Monterey Bay and the surrounding Santa Cruz Mountains. “The new No. 12 is beauti-


ful,” Jones said. “On a clear day, you’ll be able to see all the way across the Monterey Bay, all the way to Pasatiempo.” In all, Poppy Hills will


expand from 6,863 yards to 7,063 yards at the champion- ship tees, while shifting from a par 72 to 71. The 12th hole will convert from a dogleg right, 531-yard par 5 to a straightaway 428-yard par 4. It will play as short at 380


At the end of the day, it will be a strong test of golf,


for all different classes of players, for all different ages, for men and women. –ROBERT TRENT JONES, JR.


18 / NCGA.ORG / SPRING 2013


The lake fronting the fifth green is being removed in place of a sandy waste area.


The new 12th hole might very well become Poppy Hills’ new signature hole.


Robert Trent Jones, Jr. hits the final shot of version 1.0 of Poppy Hills.


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