Hole by Hole Guide to Torrey Pines
THE South Course at Torrey Pines is a familiar layout, being one of the two courses used for the Farmers Insurance Open. But it will be a very different beast for the US Open. When the tournament was last played here in 2008 the average score was just over 74. The greens will be faster and the rough will be far thicker than the players experience when they come here for the Farmers.
1st, 450 yards, par four
Favour left side of fairway on tee shot to leave an open look at the green. A good tee shot will leave a mid iron approach to a green protected by two green side bunkers. Don’t go long on your approach, as it will leave you a difficult pitch to get up and down. A par on this hole is a great way to start your round.
2nd, 389 yards, par four
A fairway metal or hybrid is recommended on this short but demanding par four that calls for a tee shot to the left side of the fairway. Avoid going right as it will leave you a blind second shot amongst a small grove of Torreys. Good tee shot leaves a short iron into a green protected by two massive bunkers.
3rd, 200 yards, par three
Overlooking La Jolla, this is the most picturesque hole on the course. Club selection is vital as, depending on the wind, the hole can play as short as a nine iron and as long as a hybrid. Playing downhill, a good tee shot will leave you in the middle of green. Avoid going long here as it will leave you a very difficult pitch to get up and down.
4th, 488 yards, par four
The second longest par four at Torrey Pines demands a good tee shot that will leave a long iron to a green protected by a bunker on the left. The ideal approach is to the right of the green to allow the contours to feed the ball to the middle of the green. A par here is a good score.
5th, 454 yards, par four
A good tee shot will leave players beyond the rise and past both fairway bunkers leaving a mid or short iron to a green protected by two bunkers.
6th, 560 yards, par five
Usually playing downwind this dogleg right par five calls for a tee shot that favours the right side to avoid the fairway bunkers on the left. Most of the field will be going for this two-tiered green in two. Obvious birdie chance.
7th, 462 yards, par four
This dogleg right par four requires a tee shot to the left. A good drive leaves an approach to an elevated green that slopes severely back to front. Don’t go long here and avoid the massive greenside bunker on the right.
8th, 176 yards, par three
The shortest hole on the course. It is an uphill par three and players need to avoid the bunker protecting the front of the green.
9th, 614 yards, par five
A brute of a par five that can be reached in two by only the longest hitters. Hitting the fairway from the tee is a must. Despite its length, there will be plenty of birdies here.
10th, 416 yards, par four
The best way to start the second nine with a birdie is to hit left centre of the fairway from the tee, then hit a short iron to a sloping green guarded by bunkers on the front left and right.
11th, 221 yards, par three
Club selection is key on this long downhill par three. It usually plays longer than its yardage because it plays into and across the prevailing wind. Don’t look for many approach shots to come to rest in the centre of the green, as a severe slope will filter shots from right to left.
12th, 504 yards, par four
A generous fairway invites players to be aggressive off the tee. The ideal position for those who miss the green in two is short, since the putting surface, which runs some 35 yards deep, is receptive to uphill chip shots.
13th, 540 yards, par five
A new tee has been added, back and to the left, calling for a 240 yard carry across a canyon. The second shot is played to a green that is elevated and protected by bunkers and rough in front.
14th, 437 yards, par four
With the canyon running all along the left of the fairway, players must go right, probably with a fairway wood. The most difficult hole location will be back right, but any shots missed long could result in bogey or worse, as there are hazards just off the back of the green.
15th, 478 yards, par four
Players who shape their shots will not find much room here. Eucalyptus trees protect both sides of this tight fairway and the slightly uphill green slopes aggressively from right to left. Shots coming from the right had better land softly if a player wants to have putter in hand for his third shot.
16th, 227 yards, par three
Two different tees will have a dramatic impact on how this hole is played. The shorter tee, to the left, brings two greenside bunkers into play, but players can aim right and ride the prevailing breeze. The front of the green is open from the longer tee, but the wind can complicate the angle.
17th, 442 yards, par four
A high draw from the tee will take the fairway bunker on the right, 275 yards to the front of it, out of play. That will leave a middle-to-short-iron approach to an elevated, wide, and severely undulating green protected by two bunkers in front.
18th, 570 yards, par five
Fabulous finishing hole that demands a long straight drive before an approach over the pond to a huge green that slopes from back to front. Expect to see some high drama here.
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