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Hole 18 - Finish with a Par 5, 4 or 3?

Poll Results: Which do you prefer as a closing hole?

 
  • 62% (41)
    Par 5
  • 28% (19)
    Par 4
  • 9% (6)
    Par 3
66 Total Votes  
post #1 of 64
Thread Starter 

I think a par 5 adds alot more excitement to the end of a round, especially the final round,Most PGA courses have the 18 hole as the toughest handicap hole ,which is usually a par 4.IMO I think making hole 18 the easiest hole would make for more exciting finishes.Its like watching football, nobody likes a low scoring defensive game,everybody wants to see a shootout, because its more exciting.Let me hear your thoughts.

post #2 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post
 

I think a par 5 adds alot more excitement to the end of a round, especially the final round,Most PGA courses have the 18 hole as the toughest handicap hole ,which is usually a par 4.IMO I think making hole 18 the easiest hole would make for more exciting finishes.Its like watching football, nobody likes a low scoring defensive game,everybody wants to see a shootout, because its more exciting.Let me hear your thoughts.

I didn't vote in the poll because I think the answer (for me) is entirely dependent on the situation.  There is no "right" answer.  For example, if the leader of the tournament is a few groups ahead of all of his chasers, then, yeah, I want a par 5 that is reachable to give them all good chances to catch him.  On the other hand, if the leader is in the last group, then I want him to have to work for his victory.  I don't want him to have an anti-climactic cake-walk on the last hole.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post
 

Its like watching football, nobody likes a low scoring defensive game,everybody wants to see a shootout, because its more exciting.

This is false.  Less people may like low-scoring games, but not "nobody."  Assuming we're talking about great defensive play, as opposed to just shitty offensive play (overthrown balls, dropped passes, fumbles, that kinda garbage) then count me in the group that loves watching a great defensive battle.  I like crazy high scoring games too ... but defensive games can be beautiful to watch as well. :)

post #3 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post
 

Most PGA courses have the 18 hole as the toughest handicap hole ,which is usually a par 4

I disagree................every golf course is different.  Whether its one of many hometown courses you play on the weekend, or played on the PGA tour.  In some events, the final holes are birdie/eagle fests.........in others, it's "HANG ON" for dear life........

 

This is a good thing....

 

I didn't vote because I don't care......I don't like par3s finishing holes, but that's besides the point.  I equally enjoy courses with a difficult finish and one that can be attacked. I've belonged to courses that had both.....it doesn't matter.  Each is good in it's own way.

post #4 of 64

I wouldn't want all courses to be the same, but I do like playing par 5s as the closing hole at both the Keystone Ranch and Keystone River courses.  

 

18 at the Ranch has over 500 yards of water on the left side, to a pretty narrow (but deep) green with bunkers on the right.  It is not an easy hole, but can offer up a variety of scores sorta like 18 at Pebble Beach.  I like that.

post #5 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post
 

I think a par 5 adds alot more excitement to the end of a round, especially the final round,Most PGA courses have the 18 hole as the toughest handicap hole ,which is usually a par 4.IMO I think making hole 18 the easiest hole would make for more exciting finishes.Its like watching football, nobody likes a low scoring defensive game,everybody wants to see a shootout, because its more exciting.Let me hear your thoughts.

 

I think ending on a par 5 would make it less exciting.  If a player has a multiple shot lead, making a par on a par 5 is much easier than par on 18 at Carnoustie, Oak Hill, Oakmont, Doral, Riviera.  If it's a par 5 that's reachable for most of the field, like 18 at TPC Boston, then it's basically just a long par 4, I think the hole averages about 4.5.  To make that hole more exciting they actually made the green smaller by 50%, essentially making it more difficult, not easier.

post #6 of 64

Our *toughest* holes is #9 - a few years ago, the club tried to flip the 9s to make that #18 - to leave a lasting impression with guests and hopefully turn them into members.

 

It also made sense since it would force everyone to drive by the clubhouse going from 9 to 10.

 

But the old guys went nuts (they bitch when it is their turn to start on the back during our double tee time weekend times)

 

It is the only non par 3 hole with a forced carry with trees blocking the shorter carry on the left -  a slicer may not carry or may hit it into the second pond on the right.

 

It is often my last hole during weekend rounds and even dropped me from first to out of the $$$ in a tourney.

post #7 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blitz28179 View Post
 

Its like watching football, nobody likes a low scoring defensive game,everybody wants to see a shootout,

Well I guess I'm "nobody" (along with a whole lot of people that live around here).

 

I'll also take a 1 to 0 game in baseball with two great pitchers any day over a 9 to 8 home run fest with pitchers that should be back in Triple A.

 

And I'll take a US Open, where par is likely to win, over some tournaments where -15 doesn't even get a top 5.

 

I do acknowledge that most fans (especially casual fans) want to see points, runs, and birdies and don't appreciate defense as much.

post #8 of 64

What about a drive-able par4 with a water trap? That would make an exciting last hole

post #9 of 64
Doesn't matter as long as it's a great hole. The 18th at The Experience at Koele (on Lanai) is a 180-yard par-3 to a narrow green protected by water front and left and bunkers right. It's a tough hole, but players of all abilities can hit a great (or terrible) shot there making for an exciting finish to your round. I've seen more par-5 finishers that are duds than great holes, but finishing with a birdie is awesome--so I guess that's good because you either get a great finishing hole or an easy birdie at the end.

Really hard par-4s are probably what most designers want. I guess that's cool too.

I guess I just really like golf so it's all good.
post #10 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop View Post

Doesn't matter as long as it's a great hole. The 18th at The Experience at Koele (on Lanai) is a 180-yard par-3 to a narrow green protected by water front and left and bunkers right. It's a tough hole, but players of all abilities can hit a great (or terrible) shot there making for an exciting finish to your round. I've seen more par-5 finishers that are duds than great holes, but finishing with a birdie is awesome--so I guess that's good because you either get a great finishing hole or an easy birdie at the end.

Really hard par-4s are probably what most designers want. I guess that's cool too.

I guess I just really like golf so it's all good.

 

Agree.  Great doesn't necessarily mean hard either.

post #11 of 64

It should be a hole where you need to hit a decent shot to make par, and where a great shot gives you a birdie chance. You shouldn't need to hit a perfect shot or make a crazy up and down to make par, but it should be punishing to the player who chokes and rewarding to the one who hits the clutch shot. I voted for a par 3 because par 4s can be really similar and it's rare to have a really good one at the last. I'd rather not play a hole just like #13 again. I like how some links courses handle this notion; there are severe booby traps as well as lots of open space; you can either go for broke or try to force it into a safe spot in a desperate attempt to keep a lead.

 

It's largely irrelevant in stroke play what the 18th is like. You should in theory be able to play the holes in any order and still shoot the same score. In match play though, you play the hole differently based on your opponent and you may need to be really aggressive on the hard holes sometimes. Take the par 4 18th at my club, which I usually play against my brother. He's gotten better but for a while I would play the previous 2 holes conservatively because I knew he's hitting it into the water 100% if he hits first, and I can hit as little as a 5 iron or as much as a driver and still be in the 160 or less range. If he does hit the fairway, I can hit it to where I'm hitting 5 clubs less than him from a better angle because the fairway is so open. Lots of options, but it doesn't offer me a lot of difference in flavor because it's an easy hole for 2 draws. I wish the back tees would make it like a 240 yard water carry and a par 5, it would still be easy enough for me but it would intimidate my opponents more.

 

One club has a par 5, but it's a terrible hole. It's short, doglegs twice really sharply, and basically punishes long hitters. There are no real angles to play, you have to hit 200, 180, 100ish. There's another that's like an airport runway, huge and straight and long. That one is right after a great par 3 so it pales in comparison, but it is a decent road hole on a casual round because you can let it rip, even though it isn't a great eagle opportunity unless you're really good. 

 

Another club nearby has a very straightforward mid iron length par 3, though it's an executive course. Good for a casual round because it feels satisfying to walk away from a birdie chance on the final hole, but I'd say it's a course for hackers and they try to throw them a bone because guys who can't hit the ball well can get picked apart on 10-15. Any match would be decided on maybe #16 IMO unless one guy benefitted from getting a lot of strokes.

post #12 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by mvmac View Post
 

 

I think ending on a par 5 would make it less exciting.  If a player has a multiple shot lead, making a par on a par 5 is much easier than par on 18 at Carnoustie, Oak Hill, Oakmont, Doral, Riviera.  If it's a par 5 that's reachable for most of the field, like 18 at TPC Boston, then it's basically just a long par 4, I think the hole averages about 4.5.  To make that hole more exciting they actually made the green smaller by 50%, essentially making it more difficult, not easier.

I really think it depends on if there is a player in the last group that has an outright lead or not.  

 

Say you have a hole that averages just over 4 and is a par 4- if two guys are tied, they will likely stay tied.  If one has a 1 shot lead, he will probably keep that lead.  If there is a club house leader, he will probably end up the winner.

 

With a hole that averages 4.5 and is a par 4- you are more likely to see guys make different scores than each other so two guys who are tied going into 18 may not end up tied.  It will be harder to protect a 1 shot lead and a club house leader is very likely to win.

 

With a hole that averages 4.5 and is a par 5- you are more likely to see guys make different scores than each other so two guys who are tied going into 18 may not end up tied.  It will be very easy to protect a 1 shot lead, but a much easier to make up a 1 shot deficit to tie a club house leader with a closing birdie (or possibly even an eagle).

 

For me, regardless of par, it is probably best to have a hole where 3, 4, 5 & 6 are all likely possibilities as opposed to a hole where most of the guys make 4.  While 13 & 15 at Augusta are not closing holes, I do think they are part of the reason that the final 9 at the Masters tends to be so exciting as some guys make 3 or 4 while others make 5 or 6. 

post #13 of 64

I love it when the 18th offers the possibility of a train wreck. Winged Foot in the 2006 Open had one of the more memorable finishes in US Open history. 18 at Carnoustie is another.

post #14 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by phan52 View Post
 

I love it when the 18th offers the possibility of a train wreck. Winged Foot in the 2006 Open had one of the more memorable finishes in US Open history. 18 at Carnoustie is another.

 

Not sure that 18 at Winged Foot would have been as much of a train wreck for any other player in the history of the game not named Mickelson.  "I'm such an idiot!"

post #15 of 64
Quote:
Originally Posted by k-troop View Post
 

 

Not sure that 18 at Winged Foot would have been as much of a train wreck for any other player in the history of the game not named Mickelson.  "I'm such an idiot!"


Remember that Colin Montgomery also self-destructed and cost himself a major.

post #16 of 64
Quote:
Quote:

Originally Posted by phan52 View Post

 

I love it when the 18th offers the possibility of a train wreck. Winged Foot in the 2006 Open had one of the more memorable finishes in US Open history. 18 at Carnoustie is another.

Originally Posted by k-troop View Post
 

 

Not sure that 18 at Winged Foot would have been as much of a train wreck for any other player in the history of the game not named Mickelson.  "I'm such an idiot!"

 

But it wasn't just Mckelson. There were a number of players who messed up on that hole, Monty in particular. Ogilvie had to make a great up and down for the the par that was the ultimate winner.

 

Carnoustie is probably the ultimate train-wreck finishing hole, though.

post #17 of 64

With the tournament on the line, you want a finishing hole that tests the nerve. Not a birdie hole.  Ones on the PGA tour that immediately come to mind:

 

Riviera

TPC Sawgrass

Augusta

Doral

 

All are very tough par 4's. And if you've got a one stroke lead, you better have your nerves under control.

post #18 of 64

Have the easiest par 3 hole as the 18th hole and let us go home on a positive note :dance:

 

My current home course starts easy, and ends up hard on both front 9s.   It's very frustrating to hum along and then finish with 3 toughest holes at the end and screw up the whole round.  

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