2018 US Open Preview

The U.S. Open returns to Shinnecock Hills after a 14 year absence and it has a different feel than last they played this track. Shinnecock is one of the most iconic private clubs in the country, located in the Hamptons in New York. The course is set upon the sandhills off the seaside, that is virtually treeless that offers a links style golf course with wind and long grass.

Shinnecock went through renovations that will certainly make for some new challenges this year for the U.S. Open. We will go over the course renovations and how the course will play compared to the old set up. Alot of the changes were needed to modernize the golf course. The course is longer and more open after removing trees, however some landing zones on the fairways have been narrowed. The end result was restoring the club to its 1931 William Flynn design to bring in natural dunes and fescue – yes we are dealing with FESCUE again this year at the U.S. Open.

The course is a par-70 which has been expanded to 7,445 yards (almost 500 yards longer than the 2004 US Open). This length will certainly make an impact and favor the longer hitters on tour. To give an idea, the Par 4 14th is now 519 yards and the Par 5 16th is 616 yards, extending both holes by 75 yards. The fairways were narrowed on many holes and the greenside low-mow turf was removed as well to create a more challenging course. The hole by hole yardage is listed below:

Hole 1 – Par 4 – 393 yards
Hole 2 – Par 3 – 253 yards
Hole 3 – Par 4 – 500 yards
Hole 4 – Par 4 – 472 yards
Hole 5 – Par 5 – 585 yards
Hole 6 – Par 4 – 456 yards
Hole 7 – Par 3 – 189 yards
Hole 8 – Par 4 – 445 yards
Hole 9 – Par 4 – 481 yards
Out – Par 35 – 3,812 yards
Hole 10 – Par 4 – 412 yards
Hole 11 – Par 3 – 158 yards
Hole 12 – Par 4 – 468 yards
Hole 13 – Par 4 – 370 yards
Hole 14 – Par 4 – 519 yards
Hole 15 – Par 4 – 403 yards
Hole 16 – Par 5 – 616 yards
Hole 17 – Par 3 – 179 yards
Hole 18 – Par 4 – 488 yards
In – Par 35 – 3,613 yards
Total – Par 70 – 7,445 yards

Hole Preview:

  • Hole #2, Par 3 at 252 yards – The longest of the par threes at Shinnecock, this hole plays uphill to a long, well-bunkered green as you can see in the flyby video. The best strategy is to land the approach short of the upward-sloping green. The green complex requires strategic placement, as anything that lands on the false front will roll off the front of the green.

  • Hole #4, Par 4 at 475 yards – The first of the holes that play into the prevailing south-westerly wind, this left-to-right dogleg is a challenge. A precise tee shot is required as the fairway bunkers that protect the dogleg are in play on the right side of the fairway. Additional care is needed approaching an elevated, undulating green. The green is guarded by 3 bunkers and once again this green has a false front that requires an accurate approach or your ball will be sitting in the fairway.

  • Hole #14, Par 4 at 519 yards – This hole is a MONSTER. Another challenging par four with an elevated tee, a tight fairway and a green that sits in a saddle at the top of a slope. This is the longest Par 4 on the course.  The preferred tee shot is landing on the left side of the fairway to have the right angle to approach. The green is undulating sloping back to front and I think this hole along with the 2nd Hole Par 3 will play as the two toughest on the course.

  • Hole #18, Par 4 at 485 yards – Hole 18 had a major renovation to the design and the new tee box creates a blind tee shot. Players will want to favor the right side of the fairway as their landing area which is  hard to see from the tee, but this will give them the most favorable approach shot for a birdie try. This green is surrounded by 4 bunkers and once again the green pitches back to front with a false front. This makes for an exciting hole coming back into the clubhouse.

Past Winners

2017 Brooks Koepka
2016 Dustin Johnson
2015 Jordan Spieth
2014 Martin Kaymer
2013 Justin Rose

Weather

We will continue to monitor the weather and in particular the winds for Thursday but they could have an impact.

Key Statistics

SG: Tee to Green: 

Par 4 Scoring 450-500 yards: 

Greens in Regulation %: 

SG: Approach: 

Scrambling: 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Leave a Reply