Seeing Torrey Pines so immaculately groomed for this week’s Farmers Insurance Open makes the prospect of even more gratuitous spending tougher to swallow given the projected $14 million cost. What will they get> A new South Course irrigation system, modern bunker floor capping and tweaks to two holes. All as the architecture continues to age so poorly, the facility works out of the same 2008 U.S. Open maintenance tent—TENT— and the property continues to have way too much water-wasting turf in out of play areas.
The horrendous 4th green is also now off the table in the latest round of work, but the project will still include fairway bunker shifting on the 4th and 17th holes.
The bunkers need better drainage and their shape returned to the original work after years of sand building up on the edges, Marney said. The greens will not be altered.
There will be several strategic changes with bunkers. Most notably, the fairway bunkers to the right at the par-4 fourth and 17th will be shifted to the left and closer to the cliffs. The fairway also will move left to create more of a driving challenge, especially for the pros.
You may recall that in firmer but hardly fast U.S. Open conditions, balls were not staying on the 4th fairway. Presumably with shifted bunkers and grading work, it’ll become an automatic layup shot and even more of a missed-opportunity than the current version.