Brad Faxon confirmed he will join forces with Gil Hanse -- arguably the most unheralded big-time golf course architect in the country -- to give TPC Boston a new look for 2007.
``Most of the work will be re-bunkering, trying to give the course a more traditional New England look," said Faxon. He said there are plans to change a few holes, most notably the short, dogleg right, par-4 fourth, which has confounded golfers since the place opened in 2002. It requires a drive over wetlands and even with the tournament tee pushed back, it leaves good players with an uncomfortable tee shot.
`There's a chance we'll be able to make it almost a drivable par-4," said Faxon. ``It's just such a crazy dogleg."
Changes will also be made to the 16th, 17th, and 18th holes, but Faxon thinks only one or two greens will be affected. If Hanse is involved, it bodes well for this young course. Praised by industry leaders, Hanse was the creative mind behind the Boston Golf Club in Hingham, a brilliant layout that has earned a spot on those lists of the best new courses in the country.
I really disliked the Butler Cabin ceremony at Augusta. I always felt that the best thing to do would be to go right to the public presentation of the green jacket, with emotions still at a fever pitch and all the people and a national TV audience there to see it. To go inside the flower-infested catacombs of the Butler Cabin and watch the club chairmen perform the ceremony they were helpless — really let the air out of the balloon. One year Hord Hardin asked Bernhard Langer how he pronounced his name. Another year he asked Seve how tall he was. I would watch this with my face in my hands, but the club wouldn't have it any other way. Oh, well. FRANK CHIRKINIAN