Offbeat Shinnecock Hills left major legacy with 2004 US Open

19:35  08 june  2018
19:35  08 june  2018 Source:   golfweek.com

Andrew "Beef" Johnston qualifies for U.S. Open at Shinnecock Hills

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"I can remember watching the 2004 US Open at Shinnecock on TV, when (winner) Retief Goosen beat Phil (Mickelson) by two shots," Herbert said. Former Cowboys Workman, Hearn come up short in advancing to Shinnecock Hills . LEAVE A REPLY Cancel reply.

Rewriting Shinnecock History. The United States Golf Association (USGA) is hoping for a smoother US Open at Shinnecock than when the major “ Shinnecock Hills is hallowed ground,” writer Guy Vocum states. “The events of a mini-disaster at Shinnecock during its last hosting in 2004

Johnny Miller concluded NBC's 2003 U.S. Open telecast by suggesting Olympia Fields was a bit too tame by U.S. Golf Association standards. He warned that players had better look out because the USGA would exact revenge at Shinnecock Hills.

Miller proved prophetic, though the 1973 U.S. Open champion probably couldn't imagine the bureaucratic unraveling that would take place in 2004. The course setup disaster on arguably the most complete U.S. Open design forever changed the USGA's image, its approach to course setup and the group's relationship with players, media, venues and even television partners.

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Below are some revealing comments about Shinnecock Hills from the 2004 US Open US Open Retief Goosen had accumulated 6 Major top-10 finishes prior to winning at Shinnecock Hills , including the 2001 US Open title hosted at Southern Hills

“Looking back at Erin Hills , it was a new course for us , we wanted to accommodate the wind” Davis said. While we are satisfied with how it played When the U . S . Open was held at Shinnecock Hills in 1986, 1995 and 2004 , the fairways were tightened to 26-28 yards regardless of fairway bunkering.

"I would just say that it was 14 years ago, it was a different time, it was different people, and we as an organization, we learned from it," said current USGA executive director Mike Davis, who was a minor player on the 2004 setup team. "I think that the difference then versus now is there was a lot more, we have a lot more technology, a lot more data in our hands."

Some players simply gave up?

Would that have helped the USGA see what seemingly was obvious to everyone watching? That the greens were too dry and too fast?

"What really happened then was just a lack of water," Davis conceded recently in the first public acknowledgment that 2004's setup gone bad came as a direct result of the USGA. Until Davis came clean at the recent U.S. Open media day, previous regimes floated (and believed) theories of maintenance crew mistakes, a middle of the night rogue and, in the strangest excuse of all, the suggestion some players simply gave up under the grueling weekend conditions.

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History of U . S . Open at Shinnecock Hills . The 2004 U . S . Open Golf Championship was the fourth U . S . Open at Shinnecock Hills . A mix of five bogeys, a double-bogey and a birdie at the last left him at 10-over 290 as he narrowly avoided returning his worst round at a U . S . Open .

Shinnecock Hills Golf Club NY, USA . Green Keeper: Mark Michaud. Shinnecock 's uncluttered landscape is one of the most compelling in golf. Many who watched the 2004 U . S . Open concluded there to be no tougher examination in golf than here.

"How do you give up?" Ernie Els asked a few days later, when told what the USGA's Tom Meeks said after the 2004 U.S. Open. "I've never given up on any round of golf in my life. If I did give up, I would have shot 100. I mean that's ridiculous."

The setup for Shinnecock Hills in 2004 started off fine, though Meeks pinpointed four greens on edge in an early week Golf Channel interview. A star-studded leaderboard got to 6 under in the opening 36 holes, and after that the U.S. Open was never quite same.

According to several attendees at the time and confirmed again with several of the key players, Shinnecock's steeply pitched Redan green at No. 7 was double cut and rolled Friday night under USGA supervision. The increase in speed was part of the setup plan all week to toughen up the course for weekend play. By several accounts, the club's gifted superintendent, Mark Michaud, and his volunteer help did not have the USGA's ear at that point of the week, an almost unthinkable situation in the Davis era in which set-up gauges, weather forecasts and agronomists are leaned on.

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The USGA's Jeff Hall discusses some of the enhancements that have been done at Shinnecock Hills , site of the 118th U . S . Open , since the championship last visited the iconic venue in 2004 . CONTACT US .

Rewriting Shinnecock History. The United States Golf Association (USGA) is hoping for a smoother US Open at Shinnecock than when the major “ Shinnecock Hills is hallowed ground,” writer Guy Vocum states. “The events of a mini-disaster at Shinnecock during its last hosting in 2004

As Saturday's round developed and the course dried out, few players could hold the seventh green. Worse, many chip shots were hit to the hole, only to roll back off the green. As the day wore on and leader Phil Mickelson made double bogey there - the six-time runner-up lost the tournament by two strokes - executive director David Fay chimed in from his NBC announcer position, saying the seventh green was "by mistake, rolled this morning." Fay said this as cameras showed workers beginning to mow the very same green after Saturday's round.

From there, the USGA struggled to regain control of the narrative. Executive committee member Walter Driver blamed the issues on a mistaken rolling. After the tournament, former executive director Frank Hannigan likened the USGA spin to "saying Sauchiehall Street was inadvertently torn up overnight."

Not enough water and too much wind

As high winds blew into the wee hours Saturday night, Golf Channel's Rich Lerner asked Meeks if the USGA planned to put some water on the course to keep it from getting any drier. Meeks said the outdated Shinnecock irrigation system was too weak to combat the wind, so the system was not used to maintain some balance between fast and out of control.

It's no surprise players veer toward the classics when picking US Open favorites

  It's no surprise players veer toward the classics when picking US Open favorites Beginning this week at Shinnecock Hills, the USGA is starting a run of holding the U.S. Open at several classic venues. Not surprisingly, the players approve“I would say probably Pebble Beach or Torrey Pines for me,” said Tiger Woods. “[And] of the classic venues, I think the two that stand out in my mind are Winged Foot and Oakmont. As a classic venue they don’t get any better than that.

Can You Play Shinnecock Hills ? Looking up the 18th fairway, whose green is to the left ; with The 2018 U . S . Open will be the fifth time that major is played at Shinnecock Hills . Having hosted that 1896 Open , two more in the late 20th century, and then again in 2004 , Shinnecock Hills is the only

Historical Facts about Shinnecock Hills & the US Open . Even though the Shinnecock Hills Club was established way back in 1891, it has maintained its reputation as a quality venue for hosting major golf tournaments. Harman is one of the few professional golfers who are left -handed.

However, Sunday morning saw the fiasco start at the seventh and spread to other greens. The first twosome out, with Kevin Stadler and J.J. Henry, posted a pair of triple bogeys. The next pairing through posted a triple bogey and a double bogey. Miller grimly stated that the hole was "unplayable."

The USGA halted play on the seventh and applied a light misting to keep balls from rolling off the surface. Just a light green syringing proved the green could be made playable. Other greens were also watered as play progressed.

Dropping by the NBC booth Sunday morning, then USGA president and now Augusta National chairman Fred Ridley defended the seventh hole setup, saying it was caused by a "perfect storm" of wind, sun, hole location and the alleged accidental rolling. When NBC's Dan Hicks joked that they'd gone from talking about growing the game to growing grass, Ridley didn't laugh.

The USGA's relationship was never quite the same with players, its television partner or the club brass at Shinnecock Hills. While some fences were eventually mended, the career of superintendent Michaud was never the same. The USGA eventually dropped NBC for Fox, and several within the USGA eventually moved on as Davis was ushered into the lead job by the 2006 U.S. Open. Private admissions of error and a healthy site fee finally convinced Shinnecock Hills to sign up for 2018 and the 2026 U.S. Opens.

Golf-Tiger slams door shut on personal questions ahead of U.S. Open

  Golf-Tiger slams door shut on personal questions ahead of U.S. Open Tiger Woods spoke openly about the state of his game on Tuesday ahead of the U.S. Open, but slammed the door shut on questions about his private life.<p><br></p>Barely a year after being arrested asleep at the wheel of his car in Florida, a bright-eyed Woods faced the media for a 25-minute press conference at Shinnecock Hills.

Shinnecock Hills has graduated. One of the USGA's favorite sites to host its most prestigious Harry Vardon left us much more than six Open wins and a grip. Woodhall Spa is Vardon's design legacy It so impressed Jack Nicklaus in his 1966 win that he named his own major -worthy course in Ohio after it.

Next year, one of golf’s four major championships will return to the historic Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, which has hosted four previous U . S . Opens . Retief Goosen of South Africa won the 2004 US Open at Shinnecock . (Getty).

Davis and front-nine setup man Jeff Hall now have advanced tools such as moisture readers, Tru-Firm, weather gauges and extensive documentation to prevent a similar debacle. Yet the golf world still knows that what happened last year at Erin Hills looks eerily similar to the Olympia Fields circumstances.

After seeing players dominate the long and wide Erin Hills, the USGA ordered a fairway narrowing at Shinnecock Hills in the fall of 2017. And whether it maintains control of the course will determine if it can regain credibility still damaged by the events of 2004.

(Note: This story appears in the June 2018 issue of Golfweek).

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Jordan Spieth misses first cut at major since 2014 .
Jordan Spieth had a terrible finish to his round at the US Open on Friday that will result in him missing the cut. Spieth bogeyed the 17th and 18th holes to finish at +9 for the tournament, with the projected cut at eight over. The real heartbreaker was a birdie putt on 18 he missed from fairly close range, leaving him to settle for par.Spieth was part of a great group featuring him, Phil Mickelson and Rory McIlroy, but only one is set to continue for the rest of the weekend. All three players carded high scores on the first day before bouncing back with more impressive rounds on Friday at Shinnecock Hills.

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