In this week's SI Golf Plus, a stand alone FedEx Cup playoff preview (not posted online), Michael Bamberger profiles architect Tom Doak's rise to prominence. For synergy purposes, included with the piece is a Doak assessments of each FedEx Cup playoff venue, including the TPC Boston, recently renovated by Gil Hanse and Brad Faxon.
Here's what Doak says:
I've never been there, and I'm not in a good place to judge it. It's an Arnold Palmer course, and his stuff is all over the map. Gil Hanse, who used to work for me, did the renovation work there. It's a weird relationship--I admire what he's doing, but I'm not going to be his biggest booster. I have to compete with him.
Of course Tom is welcome to feel whatever he likes and you have to admire his honesty, however, he seems to be implying that he doesn't want to say anything positive about a potential competitor.
And in light of the recent release of the Golf Magazine Top 100, I'm uncomfortable with the notion of Tom, one of 100 Golf panelists, evaluating Gil's work when he's openly stating that he does not want to promote his competition. Wouldn't this make him less likely to fairly evaluate the work of Hanse or anyone else he considers competition?
This seems to me to be example A for why architects in today's cuthroat business should not be allowed to vote on course ranking panels.