The Par 5 10th hole at Harbor Shores is drop dead gorgeous but its
also vicious for a golfer.
"The biggest challenge is here at the green where we have one of the most interesting green complexes i have ever seen," says Kerry Haigh, the man who is in charge of setting the pin placements for each hole at this week's Senior PGA Championship in Benton Harbor.
The Green at 10 is defined by a massive slope that is seven to eight feet high and splits the green in half. In fact, the slope is so high that if you are on the top half, you might not be able to see someone putting from the bottom half.
Haigh says when the pin is placed up top near the front bunker, there will likely be plenty of bogeys. The pin placement will change each day and golfers won't know until the day of where the pin will be at.
The wild slope could help however on days when the pin placement is below the slope.
"Balls will go up the slope and will feed back down towards [the pin]. When the hole is down on the right side, we are going to see a lot of birdies, a lot of eagles and a lot of opportunities."
Despite being a Par 5, the green is reachable in two. The problem is what you do from there. If a golfer goes after the green in two and ends up in a bad spot, they could be looking at a 3-putt. Laying up and setting yourself for an easier putt will be considered a ton by golfers this week.
"An even more interesting hole location is when its all the way back
right," Haigh says point to the very top right portion of the green. "Not only do we have this hill side to go up and over, you have a bunker that will stop balls when they are coming in in two."
Haigh points out that if you the shot is not long enough and rolls back down the slope, golfers are in a tricky situation. They will not only have a giant slope to overcome but the bunker will be directly in between their ball and the pin.
"Then what do you do?" Haigh questions.
that's when a wedge may come out on the green Haigh says.
Just don't let course designer Jack Nicklaus see that. The last time someone tried to pitch on his green---Nicklaus put a stop to it and then did the unthinkable.
During the "Champions for Change" golf outing in August, 2010 that opened up the Harbor Shores Golf Course, Nicklaus golfed with Tom Watson, Arnold Palmer and Johnny Miller.
Miller was in that collection area down below with the pin up top. He called for a wedge when Nicklaus jokingly asked "you want me to show you how to putt it?"
Nicklaus dropped a ball and ripped a shot up the slop that wrapped up and sunk in the hole. It was ridiculous.
Now, that probably won't happen this week but you just never know. Either way, the green at 10 is the place to be for spectators to say the least.
Practice rounds begin on Tuesday.
The Tournament itself runs from Thursday to Sunday. The Final two rounds on the weekend will be shown live on channel 16.