Yellow 6540 metres, CR73.3/135
White 6330 metres, CR72.2/132
Gold 5930 metres, CR69.9/128
Blue 5477 metres, CR67.4/123
Women’s gold, CR76.7/146
Women’s blue, CR73.9/139
Peak weekday R450
Peak weekend R600
Bob Grimsdell 1948;
Sean Quinn (Golf Data) 2012
011 215 8600
The Bushwillow is the older of the two courses at Randpark, and this attractive and shady Bob Grimsdell parkland design began life in the 1940s as Windsor Park. It was a relatively short but tight layout until being revamped by Golf Data designer Sean Quinn, and stretched out to 6 540 metres. It’s an excellent test of golf, with its doglegs, water hazards, and creatively shaped greens.
Bushwillow is very different from the bigger and wider Firethorn, with many more trees lining the fairways, so accuracy off the tee is key to low scoring.
Randpark Club has made a statement in recent years in establishing themselves as one of Gauteng’s premier golf destinations. It has become one of the leading social golf clubs in the country by morphing from a golf club into a community lifestyle club. The upstairs terrace bar of the clubhouse overlooking the course is the place to be on festive occasions.
And their two outstanding golf courses are a big part of the growing appeal of Randpark. The club’s metamorphosis began in 2011 with a four-year R26-million investment into the upgrade of its courses by Golf Data. They were modernised and rebranded in 2013 as Firethorn and Bushwillow. In the last three years the courses have hosted four tri-sanctioned tournaments between the European Tour, Asian Tour and Sunshine Tour, the 2018 and 2020 Joburg Open, and SA Open in 2019 and 2020.
62, Louis Oosthuizen, 2018 SA Open
Note: Shubhankar Sharma shot 61 in the 2017 Joburg Open, but it did not count as the official course record as preferred lies were allowed.
The course begins with two attractive par 5s in the first three holes where birdies are up for grabs for longer hitters. The third is a superb risk-and-reward par 5, 448 metres from the club tees, where a good drive sets up the question of whether to brave going for the green in two. There’s water fronting the right side of the green, and a bunker short on the left. Bushwillow has a strong finish, with the 378m 16th one of the best par 4s at Randpark. It curves right to left with a stream the entire length of the hole on the left. That’s followed by a long par 5 with water guarding the green.
Excellent double-storey floodlit range open to the public until 8pm each day. It has 40 covered bays adjoining the clubhouse. It now gives golfers free access with every bucket of balls to the Inrange multiplayer golf experience. Driving range membership is available. There is a fitting and repair centre. Teaching pros Stuart Blackie and Darren Witter. Practice putting greens close to the first tee.
The Fairway Hotel adjoining the Randpark clubhouse and overlooking the first tee of the Firethorn course has rooms and suites, plus 7 Golf Villas, each with a four-bedroom unit and braai area. Ideal for golf groups.
2021 Darren Quirk & Cara Ford
2020 Erwee Botha & Kim Turget
2019 Johan Aucamp & Cara Ford
Randpark hosted two SA Opens in January 2020 (won by Branden Grace with a record equalling total of 263) and December 2018 (Louis Oosthuizen 266), plus the 2020 Joburg Open (Joachim Hansen 265) and 2018 Joburg Open (Shubhankar Sharma 264). The club’s link with the SA Open began with the 1995 championship (Retief Goosen 275) and 2000 Open (Swede Mathias Gronberg 274). In 2019 Randpark became the first 36-hole facility to host the SA Open using both their courses for the championship’s first two rounds, and thus accommodating a field of 240 players.
1/ A low score on the Bushwillow is key to winning tournaments at Randpark. Shubhankar Sharma had 10 birdies in a 61 in winning the 2018 Joburg Open with a 23-under score of 264. Louis Oosthuizen opened with 62 at Bushwillow in winning the 2019 SA Open on 18-under 266. Both courses were par 71 for the SA Open.
2/ Randpark also run the Creek 9 par-3 course, one of Johannesburg’s municipal golfing gems, in nearby Emmarentia next to the Roosevelt Park Rec Centre. Randpark assumed operational control and responsibility in 2013.
3/ Randpark has a Health & Wellness Centre, tennis courts and running track access.
4/ The club has a fleet of 60 carts and specialises in hosting corporate “one-stop shop” golf days. The ability to cater for hundreds of golfers gives Randpark the edge over rivals.
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