The Evolution of Augusta National

What would the Good Doctor Say?

“Augusta, after all, is not your local neighborhood golf course; indeed, it is not even your standard, run-of-the-mill, Major championship venue. By hosting The Masters every peacetime April since 1934, it has inevitably been subject to the sort of nipping and tucking that generally takes place perhaps once a decade (when a U.S. Open or PGA Championship visits) at places like Winged Foot, Oakmont or Pebble Beach. But at Augusta, well-intended ideas to improve the golf course seldom are tempered by several years worth of study and debate; with the next Major never more than 12 months away, they happen quickly and, in the contemporary era, with almost numbing regularity.”

Which is why we are mesmerized every spring leading up to The Masters by the same burning question, what new changes have the the boys in the green jackets made to Augusta and how will that affect who has a chance to win this year.

In this fascinating piece Daniel Wexler analyzes the changes to Augusta National from it’s original masterful creation by Bobby Jones and Alister MacKenzie back in 1933 right up through Hootie’s Tiger Proofing of the course in recent years.  Referencing the original plans of the course, he reveals the tactical thinking of these two golfing greats in creating what has become one of the most iconic golf venues in the world.  He then goes through every hole and every significant change that has happened to present a scholarly analysis of the effect of those changes on what is played today.

Get yourself a Venti Cappuccino because this is a very detailed and engaging piece of architectural analysis that demands your full concentration to appreciate.

(Click here to read Daniel Wexler’s article on The Evolution of Augusta National)

Daniel Wexler

Golf Club Atlas website

March 2011

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