"First, it’s a novel concept to walk off a green and see a tee," Ogilvie said, comparing Shaughnessy’s walkability to sprawling modern courses that require players to use carts. "The greens are extremely small too, probably smaller than Harbour Town’s (the course in Hilton Head Island, S.C., where the PGA Tour plays every spring). I like that. Why do you need a 50-yard by 50 yard green?
"With new courses these days a developer carries a rope and stretches it 35 yards one way and 35 yards another, and then cuts a swath with no regard for the trees," Ogilvie said.
Asked what else charged him up about the course, Ogilvie had a simple and straightforward response. He’s a thinker, able to distil his ideas into cogent remarks. He’s concerned about matters beyond golf, such as the role of government—he believes the Bush administration should be raising taxes, not lowering them, a view that’s probably not popular among his fellow PGA Tour players--and he’s concerned with the vast amounts of energy we consume. Ogilvie, who referred to himself a "fiscal Republican" and a "social Democrat," drives a Toyota Prius, the hybrid car of the moment.
But back to golf, and Shaughnessy.
"What I’m getting charged up about is wondering why we haven’t been here before. I think you’ll have the highest score relative to par on tour this year, with the exception of the U.S. Open," Ogilvie said.
He also spoke about taking up his position next year on the tour’s policy board. It’s a three-year appointment. He’ll serve with Davis Love III, Scott McCarron and Joe Durant.
"I’m no shrinking violet in the boardroom," he said. "I think we can have an influence on who builds our courses. Tom Doak is talking to the tour about building a course in Milwaukee, and I’d like to see guys like David McKay Kidd (he designed the highly-acclaimed first course at Bandon Dunes in Bend, Oregon), and [Bill] Coore and [Ben] Crenshaw design courses we play. The days of [Tom] Fazio and [Pete] Dye are ending.
"You hear from players every day that they love playing courses like this," Ogilvie continued. "But now the tour is starting to listen."