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Tanned, Rested & Refreshed Allenby Back To His Whinging Ways!

Right around the time the Aussie feed of the Australian Open had shown us a sit-down interview where Robert Allenby talked about his rejuvenated life after firing everyone close to him (there's more in this Brent Read piece…if you insist), he was caught by an open microphone crying about The Lakes, just as he did last year.

Only this time he raised the bar, taking on the entire course: "This is certainly at the top of the list of the worst courses I have ever played."

Allenby later turned to Twitter to apologize with what can only be assumed to be the Australian spelling of offended.

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Reader Comments (45)

I saw the interview with him on Golf Channel last night, very bizarre. He said in so many words that he basically "eliminated" everyone in his life who was even remotely negative. The guy seems like a jerk to be honest. He also mentioned a new woman in his life. I am guessing this is number 3?
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterSun Mountain Man
OT But either him or that other Aussie ''A'' guy looks like an alien to me. Just sayin'.

Sorry, I can never remember which is which. The one with the big head that wore Payne Stewart's clothes is the alien.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
Sun mountain man - me thinks you missed a number in front of the 3.....take your pick as to which is the most accurate!
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterM
Allenby is a complex bloke. Suffers from foot in mouth more than he is a 'jerk' His heart is in the right place and he's got a good sense of humour.

Whatever... I know Geoff raves about the Lakes but many members of the lakes, especially the older members, would agree with Allenby. The first time I played the new layout I had a older member tell me ' you won't enjoy it, <the architect> has *&^%$% it'. Greens are so severe and members are hunting for balls all day long in the fescue.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterIanB
'He said in so many words that he basically "eliminated" everyone in his life who was even remotely negative.'
He missed the one in the mirror!
Didn't see the telecast. Did he really let loose as poster 'Rob' said in a previous thread, 'after flying the 11th green, an open mike caught Allenby saying "This is certainly at the top of the list of the worst courses I have ever played.'
How is it the golf course's fault you flew it X yards too far?

His Majors numbers are instructive:

67 Majors: 23(!) missed cuts and best finishes of 2 T10, 1 T9 and 2 T7 in the other 44. I don't remember him genuinely in the hunt on Sunday at any of them.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterdbh
I filled in on the bag for a friend once and we were paired with Allenby, he could not have been nicer. And this was after he was assessed 2 shots for being 80-feet away on the putting green when they announced our group on the tee. Courses are like art, not everyone likes the same thing....and that's OK in my book.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterDTF
IanB - you are right as Allenby isn't a bad guy. just speaks his mind and maybe a little too often.

He has been a great supporter of the Challenge Foundation in Australia which helps children with cancer (included Jarrod Lyle) and has never been one to publicise the fact that his annual golf day and other contributions have helped raise over $20 million for Challenge

hope he figures it out
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterbayhill bogey
Maybe he is a nice guy....comes off like a douche-bag though. On the other hand, it seems to be difficult for any player to express opinions/feelings without comipng off like a whiner. Tough line to ride.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterUgh....
Supposed to be "coming off"
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterUgh....
Just looking at the course for the first time I agree with Allenby that the greens looked badly tricked up.
That interview was very odd but as others here have said, he didn't come across as a jerk...just different.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterjjshaka

Some of the greens are severe - but not all of them. The 'severe' ones are on the holes that can handle them like 14 which is a driver 5 iron par five most of the time for pros. 15 - as someone said yesterday - does need reworking as it is far from perfect.

But anyone who thinks we '*&^%$# it' has their eyes painted on. What the Devlin Von Hagge course had evolved into was nothing like the course they had left and, frankly, it was pretty awful. Take 18 as one example. Does anyone think the 1st hole isn't better for moving the tee back down the hill where Devlin had it? Or taking the 2nd back to a 4 - as Devlin had.Don't tell me 18 isn't way better than any of the previous 3 incarnations of that hole.2 and 8 are not improved for taking all those awful trees out that separated them?
You may not like all the greens but don't argue that the course is worse than it was - it's miles better.
Hopefully The Australian the same when the work over the road is finished - because it surely wasn't better in 1978 than it was in 1975.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike Clayton
Mike did someone
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmen Coroner
touch a nerve?
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterAmen Coroner
Devlin? Bruce Devlin? I know Bruce Devlin. I went fishing with Bruce Devlin. You, sir, are no Bruce Devlin.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterBobby D
This guy has been blaming everyone/everything around him his entire sooky life. An example of a boy spoiled rotten who emotionally hasn't progressed to adulthood. (And neither has his spelling). A grump who will never be happy.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPlumb Bob
@ Mike Clayton

FWIW, Over half my ''joy'' in watching televised golf comes from the visual ''pleasantness'' of the golf course, and I am not trying to blow air up your dress, but the track looks great, and attractive, making this an event I look forward to watching. So tech problems with greens up to you, I'll leave you with this: you can't please all the people all the time, and some people, well, you just can never make them happy.

You know what you are doing, so keep up the good work.

And to the rest of you- I am not a nut- I just think ''A'' looks ''alien-like'', and those goggles he wears puts him the ''nut'' bracket more than me---- he reminds me of the kid, from ''A Christmas Story''-- in line waiting for Santa, who ''likes the Wizard of Oz'', etc, and has a goofy smile, as he dons a scarf, a leather ''hat'', and some of those Allenby goggles..very alien.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered Commenterdigsouth
Robert Allenby said similar things about Shaughnessy in Vancouver after the 2005 Canadian Open. He didn't play well which probably contributed to his assessment.

Shaughnessy is what it is, but a high number of PGA Tour pros have complimented its classic and traditional style. So Allenby probably isn't in the majority with respect to his opinion. Probably the same with The Lakes.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJay Janower
Mike - I understand your points and I would agree that it's a better golf course than before. The more I play it the more I like it, although it has taken a while to understand some of the architectural decisions. In referencing the members comments I was simply alluding to the fact that not all people like the style of course that the Lakes has become. Obviously Allenby doesn't and quite a few of the older members I know also don't like it. But - your job is a difficult one and you cannot please everyone!

re: The Australian over the road... the more I see the changes evolve the more it is becoming blatantly obvious that the course will be far too difficult for most members. The majority of members run the ball up to the greens and hit chip/runs and putts from within 50 metres. Won't be possible to do that on the new course. I'm predicting some heated debates in the locker room the afternoon of March 9th (opening day)
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterIanB

Too true - all of it!!

12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike Clayton
Who is doing the work at the Oz?
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGeorge Blunt
Isn't Allenby also a renowned Riviera hater?
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterGhillie
Love watching the Aussie Open and other events down under. Love the bunker style, and the fact they aren't pristine ala PGA Tour - which I think was what Allenby was bitching about when his honesty was captured by an open microphone. Hysterical. Always heard he was grumpy. The announce team went dead silent and they quickly put the camera on another hole. Anyone know who originally designed The Lakes, in 1928. Not on their website.
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterLA Man

12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike Clayton
Mr Clayton can you tell me if the greens were tricked up to protect the course from very low scores. I play there a lot and I hear that a lot from the club members and a lot of Touring Pros I know. It would be interesting to hear your thoughts as the designer. I am not saying the comments are true but I must say that a few of the greens seem to be tricked up with swales, levels and undualtions. That 4th green seems to have more levels than a multi story car park :) Thanks
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimon
Nicklaus re-designing the Aussie , I played one of his courses in NZ a few weeks ago called Kinloch and that is a beast of a course, long, tough and the greens are so tough to try and get a ball to stay on the green. If he does anything like that at The Aussie I may apply for membership as the members will be out of there real quick and the fees may be a lot cheaper :):):)
12.6.2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimon
I was surprised to find out that Nicklaus was hired to do the redo of The Australian.

That is like hiring an arsonist to put out the fire that he started.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterRob
I carried a scoreboard at Valderrama for RA's match with Michael Campbell at the Volvo Masters 1996 - couldn't have wished for a happier experience. Both guys were top class in their manner and behaviour. Mind you this was before RA went to the USA so things may have changed since then.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterStephen W

Tke greens we did had absolutely nothing to do with the tournament and keeping scores up. At the short holes - and there are many at The Lakes - it was about making interesting approach shots that also asked for well placed drives.
Some are done with a deal of internal contour - 4 is one but it's an iron and a pitch with an 8 or 9 iron. The green ought to ask for some precision with a club that short.

And there are no 'tricked up' greens there - what ever that means.Is the 14th green at Augusta 'tricked up'? 17 at St Andrews?
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMike Clayton
Ah Mike, you hit on the conundrum. If the 14th green at Augusta showed up on a new golf course, most would hate it, including respected critics that frequent this site. Historically revered courses can get away with quirks that new courses cannot. The list is quite long but you can start with the 13th at North Berwick, one of the most fun and memorable holes I played on a 10 day trip.

Personally, I like quirks that provide memorable challenges. I am no critic, but my favorite modern architect was Stranz, who's work has been called "tricked up" by many players and critics alike. As DTF points out -not everyone likes the same thing and its OK.
Everybody is not going to like the same thing, this is a good thing. We should not all like the same things. The fact that Allenby got caught saying he doesn't like something does not make him a bad person or mean he should be called names, even if that something was designed by someone we respect and / or are friends with.

We don't all drive the same car, use the same phone, wear the same clothes, live in the same house or like the same golf courses, I'm not sure why some people thing we all should.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPress Agent
Allenby walked off the Shaughnessy Golf Course in Vancouver after the second round of the 2005 Canadian Open and slammed it too. He had fired a big number and missed the cut of course. The rest of the field was praising the place and questioning why the Canadian Open wasn't played there more often.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJack
So as the purists rant of defacing the Eden, Road hole etc.,
Some of those same purists cry foul about too much contour
on "new" greens.

Mike, the place looks great. Played 3 tournaments there before your work, never thought it anything special,
or anything too bad. Now, I wish I was there
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterPat Burke
Hey @Jack - I beat you by a few blog posts!! Ha ha.

Nice to know that someone else remembers Allenby's behavior at the Canadian Open that year.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJay Janower
@Simon - in all seriousness, I suspect that we'll lose quite a few of the older members from the Aussie. The formula is simple - if you can't get the ball in the air around the greens you're not going to be able to play the course.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterIanB
Allenby doesn't like Riviera?

I seem to recall him winning there many years ago with a great second shot to 18.

Probably his greatest win, I would guess.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered Commenterfyg
Mr Clayton, thanks for your reply. As i said I am not saying anything bad about the course just discussing what the members and some Pros have told me. I seem to recall Norman compaining about the course a couple of yrs ago ? Dont recall what his complaints were but maybe you could shed some light on that ? apparently he prefers the old layout but I dont know why that is. No doubt redesigning a well known course is never going to please everyone, do me a favour Mike and get rid of the well placed fairway bunker on the 12th so my mate doesnt land it yet again and go mental :):):)

Ian B...Thats a real pity if you think the new design will drive members away, that is confusing as The Bear gave a recent interview and he said he was amazed and excited that the members at the Aus told him to make the course difficult and longer which surprised him. It all sounds very odd to me.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterSimon
@fyg: Agree - think it was pouring rain.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterMrs. Mashie
Hey Jay J

So you did. I just scanned the comments and posted mine. I was standing right there with the TSN folk and heard him spout off. Never had any fondness for him before or after then.

Good to hear from you.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterJack
Allenbys disposition on the course is not the best but then again most if not all of us aren't always happy and in the best moods either. Guy is such a suberb iron player but his putting by tour standards is just awful.

That said I had a friend that was a volunteer at the now defunct 84 Lumber Classic @ Mystic Rock in Western Pennsylvania a few years back. He was responsible for player transportation around the resort as the main practice range is nowhere near the 1st tee of the course. Hands down he said the two most pleasant people to deal during the event were Robert Allenby and Tim Petrovic. Personable and respectful of the volunteers. Have heard from other people that Petrovic is on the short list of nicest guys on the PGA Tour period.
12.7.2012 | Unregistered CommenterOWGR Fan

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