Blair Atholl – Jon James

Published by : Stuart McLean - 03 May 2022

The Blair Atholl experience is memorable. The course is a true test off the silver (club) tees (6746m), let alone the gold which play at 7527m. This is an outstanding Gary Player design. The design variety and course routing provide scoring opportunities on the five par 5s, while testing the amateur golfer on the five par 3s. The signature third was playing 175m into a light breeze and it was a personal highlight to make a 2 for the first time on a hole modelled on the 12th at Augusta. The sixth, playing 200m, was one of the most difficult holes. Its greens complex, like many at Blair Atholl, is a masterpiece and precision is required off the tee. A narrow miss can leave you with an extremely long putt which is difficult to gauge. You will encounter the local “Amen Corner” on the back nine and it is the most testing in Gauteng. The 15th and 16th are absolute brute par 4s and the uphill stroke 1 16th will often require a lay-up playing at 481m. Par on either hole feels like an accomplishment. The greens are in exceptional condition and a bunker project is progressing at pace. Blair Atholl re-entered the Top 10 in 2022 and looks likely to climb further if current conditioning, enhancement to the tee boxes, and bridge upgrade projects deliver expected returns. It is a course that looks, feels and plays like a true championship test. It would be incredible to see it host a Presidents Cup.

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