What’s interesting? Well, Highlands Links is #1 in GW’s Classic list, and #6 in ScoreGolf’s overall list. Based on Score’s list it would be #5 Classic using GW’s criteria. I must admit I like seeing it that high — and with the ongoing restoration, it wouldn’t surprise me if Highlands gets another jump once people see the completed work later this year.
Ingonish Beach, Nova Scotia
1939, Stanley Thompson 8.25
1928, Stanley Thompson 8.16
3. Jasper Park Lodge
1925, Stanley Thompson 8.14
4. Hamilton G&CC (West & South)
1914, Harry S. Colt 7.41
5. Capilano G&CC
West Vancouver, British Columbia
1937, Stanley Thompson 7.17
6. Toronto GC
1912, Harry S. Colt 7.14
7. Mount Bruno CC
St. Bruno, Quebec
1918, Willie Park Jr. 6.71
8. Victoria GC
Victoria, British Columbia
1893 Harvey Combe 6.60
9. Royal Montreal GC (Blue)
Ile Bizard, Quebec
1959, Dick Wilson (1959); Rees Jones (2006) 6.50
10. Banff Springs
1928, Stanley Thompson 6.48
Banff is No. 5 overall on Score’s list, but only #10 on GW’s classic list, quite surprising frankly. Maybe the raters at GW are suggesting the haphazard way in which Fairmont has supported the course (it has been in dire need of a proper bunker reno for years) has caught up with it. I love the course, but I must admit I thought it was high in the Score list. If properly restored, I’d suggest it is a candidate for Top 100 in the world — but not in its current state.
Of course there are the obvious strange bits in GW’s ratings, which must be largely American raters since the magazine has not done a Canadian ranking before. There are three courses in GW’s Classic list — Royal Montreal’s Blue course, Manoir Richelieu and The Algonquin — that are all recent renovations and have basically nothing to do with the “classic” courses they were built on. All three are, to my way of thinking, modern courses.
Nice to see Mount Bruno get the love it deserves — the Montreal-area course is very quiet and only ranks 72 on Score’s list — much too low. GW puts it at #7 on its Classic list, just ahead of Victoria GC.
The modern list is, in some ways, more interesting and troublesome at the same time. The strange ones — Fox Harb’r at #11 when it might be the worst modern course on a great site (and also sits ahead of Eagles Nest and Oviinbyrd, which is just wrong) — are head shakers. That Shaughnessy is a modern course, though it still uses Vernon Macan’s routing, while Royal Montreal, which was completely redone five years ago is a classic is bothersome. Nice to Sagebrush get some love, but behind Devil’s Pulpit? Who are we kidding?
- The National was the top modern course in GW’s list. Interestingly its rating — 7.62 — would put it well behind Highlands, St. George’s and Jasper — and just ahead of Hamilton, where it is #1 in ScoreGolf’s list. Blackhawk at #16 is too low, but fascinating to see all three of Rod Whitman’s courses (I suppose there are two at Wolf Creek) in the Top 30 on the GW list. Want to bet he goes four-for-four when Cabot opens?
And where is Tobiano, which ranked #16 on Score’s list, but is no where to be seen on the GW list. Odd.
Here’s the Top 10 modern:
1. The National Golf Club of Canada
1975, George Fazio/Tom Fazio 7.62
2. Devil’s Paintbrush
1992, Michael J. Hurdzan/Dana Fry 7.58
3. Rocky Crest Resort
2000, Tom McBroom 7.3
4. Beacon Hall
1988, Bob Cupp/Tom McBroom 7.17
5. Muskoka Bay Club
2006, Doug Carrick 7.13
6. Shaughnessy G&CC
Vancouver, British Columbia
1961, A. Vernon Macan 7.00
7. Devil’s Pulpit
1990, Michael J. Hurdzan/Dana Fry 6.69
8. Sagebrush Golf & Sporting Club
Quilchena, British Columbia
2010, Rod Whitman/Richard Zokol/Armen Suny 6.66
2006, Tom Fazio 6.60
10. Humber Valley Resort (River)
Deer Lake, Newfoundland
2006, Doug Carrick 6.57