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Best Places to Spectate


5th Hole – This drivable par-4 with a lake fronting the green offers a lot of risk/reward; a hillside provides an amphitheater setting around the green.


7th/8th/9th Holes – A good loop of holes to keep walking around; this trio will likely be less crowded than other parts of the course.


12th Hole – The characteristics of the green on this hole may create opportunities to see some holes-in-one. It’s also located in a central portion of the course.


17th Hole – You get great views here at this potentially pivotal hole. You might see some great shots and some poor shots under pressure, especially on the weekend.


18th Hole – If it all comes down to the last hole—and especially if a contender needs to go for the green on this par-5 in two—this is the place to be.


Practice Facility – This is where you get to see the most players and watch them hit different shots all in one place—without having to walk around.


Otis adds that there


is also room for yardages to vary widely on numer- ous holes. “That can be


done here and it could be a lot of fun. Every hole has numerous tee boxes. The championship eighth hole alone could go from 112 yards to almost 250 yards. There are plenty of options.” Ellen Port, who won the 2013


U.S. Women’s Senior Amateur (her sixth USGA championship) at CordeValle, describes it as a very fair course. “I’m the kind of player who likes to step up on the tee and know what I want to do with the shot,” she said. “I always knew how I wanted to play the shots at CordeValle. There are certain sides of the greens you want to be on. You have to think. I loved it and never got bored on that


golf course. It kept me engaged.” One particular skill will be


critical according to Port. “Some of these greens you won’t be running the ball up and onto,” she said. “It really does help to have some height on approach shots and be able to bring it in soft. But as good as all these players are, I think it’s going to be anybody’s ballgame. This is a golf course that grows on you.I got more comfortable each time I played it.” Otis knows that hosting a


national championship is a big honor for CordeValle. “We feel very privileged to host an event like this,” he said. “We have a great membership that supports the club very well, but we also feel that we have a great golf course. For the USGA to recognize that makes us feel very fortunate.”


TOM MACKIN is a former Senior Editor at GOLF Magazine. He writes about golf from his home in Scottsdale, AZ. SPRING 2016 / NCGA.ORG / 31 No. 15


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