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.
The desirable length for a good course is from 6,000 to 6,400 yards. But bear in mind that it is quality, not quantity, that counts. In my work I repeatedly have had trouble making committees see the force of this. They seem possessed with the idea that length is the main desideratum. It is beyond all argument that many a long course is noticeably uninteresting, in contrast to shorter ones that are well thought-out and skillfully constructed. DONALD ROSS