|Liberty National Golf Course|
|Course Par Value: 71|
|Course Yardage: 7400|
Liberty National Golf Course
Liberty National sits on the western shore of New York Bay: a drive, chip and putt away from the Statue of Liberty and Manhattan Skyline. Its beauty, challenge and luxury are enjoyed by an exclusive group of members, whom includes many of the world's foremost athletes, entertainers, and business leaders.
"Having a world class golf facility, is more than just a pristine course, magical views and a stunning clubhouse, it's about family too. Warm, unobtrusive service by people you know and who care, is at the core of our mission," says Martel Meyer, GM of Liberty National.
Last autumn, small design changes have been made to 14 of the 18 holes, to be premiered this season. On the third hole for example, the fairway was widened slightly, encourage the tournament players to hit driver while that extra few yards of width will be welcomed by the members. The putting surface is tweaked slightly with very subtle forms that become more obvious at tournament green speeds. The fairway was widened at five, another welcome refinement, but the tee shot remains one of the most intimidating on the course from the back tee.
At hole nine, a new bunker was added on the right side of the fairway, but the most effective change is the adjustment of the bunker short of the green that will cause players to ignore the new fairway bunker and play to the left portion of the fairway, from where, with this bunker adjustment, players will have a great look at the putting surface on this slightly uphill shot, into the wind.
"Tom Kite and I have spent years of detailed planning to create a truly outstanding golf experience at Liberty National. The 2009 Barclays Championship was a great success, but as with any significant event, it was worth the effort to improve the course for the PGA players and Liberty National's members. Those previously unseen adjustments are now reality." Says Cupp
The Amazing Club and its Amenities
The Clubhouse at Liberty National is a magnificent haven on the waterfront site. Designed by acclaimed Lindsay Newman Architecture of New York City, the striking modern glass design is in stark contrast to traditional golf clubhouse architecture and drew inspiration from the course's location along the Hudson Bay. The Clubhouse interior, by renowned designer Vicente Wolf, is elegant and chic in keeping with the overall character of Liberty National as a place of leisure and retreat.
The exclusive experience of Liberty National won't conclude
after the last putt finds the hole on 18. An elegant restaurant,
The Grill Room, with an eclectic bar, The Grill Bar, is a place
where members and guests can share a beer, martini or glass of
wine. Client entertainment or member parties can be hosted in the
private dining and meeting rooms overlooking New York Bay and the
sweeping arches of the Verrazano Bridge. As expected, The Clubhouse
provides members with luxurious locker facilities, private lounges,
massage rooms and an attentive staff just waiting to provide five
star services to the elite members and their guests.
About The Course
This 18-hole Championship Golf Course (7,400 yards, par 71) reflects the detailed expertise of former U.S. Open Champion Tom Kite and renowned course design mastermind, Bob Cupp, who collaborated on the project. Kite and Cupp's parkland/links mix style treatment of Liberty National is dramatic and yet traditional, taking into account the site's cultural ambiance, academic aesthetic principles, and elements of light and shadow.
The Course itself boasts 15 of 18 holes that feature unobstructed views of the Big Apple and Lady Liberty. While full caddy and on-course concierge service is available, members and guests also can utilize pristine cart paths with imported Belgian curb stone decorating the edges. Tees and fairways at Liberty National feature bent grass - L93, a seed most private courses reserve for their greens. Liberty National's greens are seeded with A4 grass, which is used for the greens at the world's finest golf destinations, such as Augusta National Golf Club. Liberty National also features the most advanced irrigation/drainage system ever designed for a golf course, with a system that involves each and every bunker. Liberty National also provides its members with extensive golf practice and instruction facilities, including a 340-yard double- ended grass tee range, putting and chipping greens and an indoor/outdoor video teaching studio, to be staffed by some of the nation's top teaching professionals.
The first hole requires a choice right off the bat - lay back with something less than a driver and play straight-away, or challenge the rather severe dogleg right. The more aggressive tee shot around the corner requires great precision with both distance and control and angle of play but may reward the player with nothing more than a wedge approach. The putting green is very narrow, leaving recovery from either side very difficult.
The dogleg left second will likely be played with less than a driver off the tee. The green is perched up on a ridge, so only the top half of the flagstick is visible for the short-iron approach shot. The putting green is relatively flat, making birdie a realistic chance.
The third hole plays to a diagonally set green - front right to back left - effectively making it fairly shallow in depth. Recovery shots require a great touch since the putting green falls off in all directions.
Perhaps Bethpage's best hole in terms of beauty and strategy. It can be played conservatively as a three-shotter or may be challenged in two. The green, which slopes front to back away from the player, is not particularly receptive to approaches - especially ones played from the drive zone, which sits much lower than the green.
This will be one of the toughest holes played at the tournament. The downhill tee shot is played to a fairway that sits at a slight left-to-right diagonal. Tee shots must hug the right-side cross bunker in order to stay clear of large, overhanging oaks left of the hole. The green is small and slopes back to front. Par is a good score here.
Most players will lay up their tee shots to the top of the hill overlooking the green. This will leave mid-irons to the green, which sits some 50 feet below the drive zone. If successful in finding the bottom fairway, players will have rather simple pitch shots onto the green.
The widened fairway on the right allows players to "hit away" and challenge the short side of the dogleg that is protected by large oaks. Long irons and hybrids will be used for approach shots to a green that is closely guarded by a deep bunker on the front right. Par will be an excellent score on what will likely be the toughest hole on the front nine.
This downhill one-shotter will likely end up being the most exciting of the par 3s. Since 2002, the original size of the putting green was restored - bringing the putting surface right up to the pond that fronts the green. However, conservative play off the tee will call for a deft putting touch coming back down the hill to the front portion of the green.
The longer-hitting players will have the choice of trying to fly the newly added bunker on the left to the upper fairway, which is very flat. If that strategy is successful, the hole becomes a good chance for birdie. The putting green is fairly large and flat.
The 10th hole is one of three par-4 holes measuring more than 500 yards. A slight dogleg left, the hole's location on the course exposes it to the wind -- and also exposes errant tee shots to the fine fescue grasses in the rough. Deep bunkers guard both sides of the drive zone. But length off the tee will still be a factor as the putting green is fronted by bunkers and a deep swale.
Like the 10th, this straight-away hole is out in the open and exposed to the winds. The tee shot is played to a somewhat blind fairway with deep bunkers guarding both sides. The putting green is one of the Black Course's most difficult, sloping steeply from back to front.
This par 4 is the last of a difficult three-hole stretch. The tee shot provides options - play safely to the right of the deep cross bunker and leave yourself a very long approach shot, or challenge the left cross bunker with a carry of some 260 yards. While the putting green is one of the largest on the course, it has a pronounced tier separating the front and back of the green.
The only par 5 on the back nine is a birdie hole. A well-played drive and second shot will certainly set up the player for birdie, but one miscue along the way is sure to have him scrambling for par. The 13th is the longest hole on the course, but it is still reachable in two shots by longer-hitting players. The green slopes generally from back to front.
The 14th is the shortest and should be the easiest of the four par 3s. A miss short will likely take birdie out of play while a miss long over the green will almost certainly take par out of the equation. The 14th is still a birdie hole, but with changes to the green a mediocre tee shot may make par challenging.
The slight dogleg 15th is not the Black Course's longest par 4, but it will likely be the toughest hole. Finding the fairway off the tee will be crucial to having a realistic chance to reach the green in regulation. the green is perched some 50 feet above the fairway. The putting green is without a doubt the scariest on the course. This two-tiered putting surface slopes severely from the back left to the front right.
This gentle dogleg left 16th hole is played from high up on a teeing ground that overlooks the entire hole. The green is guarded by deep bunkers that partially obscure the view on approach shots. The putting surface has "bowl-like" features on the right and left, making both recovery shots and putts a challenge.
The 17th plays uphill to an hourglass-shaped putting surface that is mostly blind from the teeing ground and is surrounded by deep bunkers. The putting green is very wide but relatively shallow in depth and is bisected by a ridge that separates two distinct tiers. This par 3 will have a stadium-like feel with hospitality lining both sides and a hillside of spectators behind cheering on every stroke. The 17th is sure to be an exciting - and loud - hole that might greatly impact the outcome on the final day.
The home hole should provide a dramatic finish. The downhill tee shot on this hole gives the player a choice. One is to lay up short of the deep clusters of bunkers that guard both sides of the drive zone. This option gives the player a wider fairway but leaves a longer approach, likely with a mid-iron. The other choice allows the player to be more aggressive off the tee and attempt to drive his ball between or beyond the bunkers. As with a half-dozen other holes on the Black Course, the uphill approach shot is played to a blind putting surface that slopes from back to front. The 2012 Barclays may well come down to a player being forced to choose how aggressively he wishes to play this final hole.