A couple of months ago my former editor at T&L Golf (RIP) asked me about participating in a new world Top 100 panel for course rankings. I was delighted — I’ve never been part of a world panel, though I’ve participated in Ontario and Canadian ones, as well as Golf Digest’s panel.
At the time I recognized I’ve now played more than half of the World Top 100 as listed in Golf Magazine, so it was fun to work through the new list for Links magazine.
The list is now posted online and comes with a lot of interesting picks.
Three Canadian courses makes the list: St. George’s at 52 (likely too high), Highlands Links at 56 (about right) and Hamilton at 79 (also probably too high, but nice to see it appear). I’ve seen 8 of the Top 10 in the Links list, and 19 of the Top 25. I voted Pine Valley No. 1, followed by Cypress Point and Shinnecock Hills. This list is also a bit more intriguing than some of the others — listing a course like Yale well up the ranking, while it doesn’t even appear on the Golf Magazine list.
Interestingly, I had a conversation last week with Bandon Dunes owner Mike Keiser where we spoke about great courses with weak holes. Some would argue that the 18th at Cypress, a mid-length par four that is tight between trees and seems somewhat out of place, holds the course back, but it made No.1 Keiser argued very few courses have 18 great holes — though we both agreed that Pine Valley was one of them.