New Golf Digest 2019 Top 100 in USA Rankings are out!

Schley Schley Love ya don't tell ya enough!Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaMembers Posts: 1,155 ✭✭
Just started to discuss at GCA and here are some of my thoughts:



1. Almost all the courses only moved up or down no more than 5 spots.



2. There was a lot of love for Monterrey Peninsula CC. The Dunes debuted at 79, as Anthony noted, and the Shore went from 65 to 56.



3. The courses that moved down 10 or more spots:

Kinlock 52 to 66

Kittansett Club 67 to 78

Spring Hill GC 69 to 93

Laurel Valley 95 to 105

Flint Hills National 97 to 113

Sahalee 98 to 117



4. The courses that moved up 10 or more spots:

Winged Foot East 62 to 52

Shoreacres 66 to 55

Essex County Club (MA.) 91 to 73

Calusa Pines 96 to 83

Sleep Hollow 101 to 89



5. Some notable debuts are Sand Valley at 110, Stone Eagle at 111, Mamouth Dunes at 145, Streamsong Black 169



6. Bel Air dropped from 157 to170 probably because hardly any raters saw TD's renovation.



7. In the second greatest 100 there were no courses that moved up 20 or more places, but a plethora of courses that moved down 20 or more places:

Bellerive down from 118 to 144

Eugene CC down from 128 to 159

Lost Dunes down from 141 to 161

Ocean Forest down from 128 to 162

Long Cove down 148 to 168

Sanctuary down 152 to 175

Trump International (West Palm Beach) down 156 to 178

Torrey Pines down 166 to 186

Glenwild down 168 to 188

Kiawah Island Club (river) down 175 to 198

The Broadmoor (east) down 169 to 199

Whisper Rock (lower) down 172 to 200



8. Overall there were 3 new courses for the TOP 100 and 23 in the Second 100 for a total of 26 courses that are no longer ranked now from 2 years ago.
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Comments

  • mci711mci711 ChicagoMembers Posts: 1,024 ✭✭
    Surprised from what I have heard Mammoth Dunes is better than Sand Valley, from just about everyone that has played both.





    Do you have a link?
  • ceejay81ceejay81 Love that chicken from Popeyes! Washington, DCMembers Posts: 1,707 ✭✭
    Definitely need a link to the list. Google is not being helpful. Hopefully it's in a list form and not a slideshow.
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  • Schley Schley Love ya don't tell ya enough! Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaMembers Posts: 1,155 ✭✭
    It's only available on the February online digital version. I have a subscription so I can access. I don't think it is free yet.
  • NCgolf135NCgolf135 Members Posts: 48 ✭✭
    Posting the whole list would be nice.
  • Schley Schley Love ya don't tell ya enough! Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaMembers Posts: 1,155 ✭✭
    edited Jan 3, 2019 9:59am #6
  • marks21marks21 Members Posts: 162 ✭✭
    mci711 wrote:


    Surprised from what I have heard Mammoth Dunes is better than Sand Valley, from just about everyone that has played both.





    Do you have a link?




    It's also interesting GD named Streamsong Black as Best New Course in 2018 over Mammoth Dunes but have MD ranked higher.
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  • mci711mci711 ChicagoMembers Posts: 1,024 ✭✭
    marks21 wrote:

    mci711 wrote:


    Surprised from what I have heard Mammoth Dunes is better than Sand Valley, from just about everyone that has played both.





    Do you have a link?




    It's also interesting GD named Streamsong Black as Best New Course in 2018 over Mammoth Dunes but have MD ranked higher.




    Good point. Maybe Streamsong gave them more money for the best new course ranking...
  • Schley Schley Love ya don't tell ya enough! Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaMembers Posts: 1,155 ✭✭
    edited Jan 3, 2019 10:09am #9
    I don’t know the actual decision process or best new course, however these rankings are based on their raters which wouldn’t have been known when they gave the 2018 best new course. I’m thinking a writer gave the best new course, whereas the ratings are a compilation of their raters scores throughout the last 2 years.
  • az2auaz2au Members Posts: 1,800 ✭✭
    Schley wrote:


    I don’t know the actual decision process or best new course, however these rankings are based on their raters which wouldn’t have been known when they gave the 2018 best new course. I’m thinking a writer gave the best new course, whereas the ratings are a compilation of their raters scores throughout the last 2 years.


    If I recall correctly from our panelist call it was a timing issue. Courses don’t pay for rankings. People can believe what they want but that couldn’t be more false.
  • landolakeslandolakes Members Posts: 524 ✭✭
    Cypress is the shortest 6524 (72)..... and a total of 23 tip out at less than 6900
  • elwhippyelwhippy Members Posts: 3,120 ✭✭
    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.
  • az2auaz2au Members Posts: 1,800 ✭✭
    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn’t that hard. You apply.
  • jayhawk0624jayhawk0624 Members Posts: 20 ✭✭
    Can you take screenshots of the 2nd 100?
  • johnnylongballjohnnylongball Members Posts: 549 ✭✭
    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.
  • az2auaz2au Members Posts: 1,800 ✭✭

    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.


    If you meet the requirements then it really isn’t now though (verifiable 5 index or less, ability to play and rate at least a dozen clubs per year). They doubled the number of panelists a couple of years ago.



    https://www.golfdigest.com/story/editors-letter-the-golden-ticket



    Honestly though I’d tell you that it isn’t very fun and if you take it seriously it ruins any round you’re playing because it is a job. It isn’t like it opens doors that most people that do it can’t get into anyway either. I have more access to play places through people I know and the clubs I belong to than GD provides me. Oh and it costs money. If those things appeal to you then you should be able to get in.
  • johnnylongballjohnnylongball Members Posts: 549 ✭✭
    az2au wrote:


    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.


    If you meet the requirements then it really isn't now though (verifiable 5 index or less, ability to play and rate at least a dozen clubs per year). They doubled the number of panelists a couple of years ago.



    https://www.golfdige...e-golden-ticket



    Honestly though I'd tell you that it isn't very fun and if you take it seriously it ruins any round you're playing because it is a job. It isn't like it opens doors that most people that do it can't get into anyway either. I have more access to play places through people I know and the clubs I belong to than GD provides me. Oh and it costs money. If those things appeal to you then you should be able to get in.




    Yeah, that's the same email address I sent my requests to. Radio silence.
  • Schley Schley Love ya don't tell ya enough! Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaMembers Posts: 1,155 ✭✭

    az2au wrote:


    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.


    If you meet the requirements then it really isn't now though (verifiable 5 index or less, ability to play and rate at least a dozen clubs per year). They doubled the number of panelists a couple of years ago.



    https://www.golfdige...e-golden-ticket



    Honestly though I'd tell you that it isn't very fun and if you take it seriously it ruins any round you're playing because it is a job. It isn't like it opens doors that most people that do it can't get into anyway either. I have more access to play places through people I know and the clubs I belong to than GD provides me. Oh and it costs money. If those things appeal to you then you should be able to get in.




    Yeah, that's the same email address I sent my requests to. Radio silence.




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  • Malones19Malones19 Members Posts: 108 ✭✭

    az2au wrote:


    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.


    If you meet the requirements then it really isn't now though (verifiable 5 index or less, ability to play and rate at least a dozen clubs per year). They doubled the number of panelists a couple of years ago.



    https://www.golfdige...e-golden-ticket



    Honestly though I'd tell you that it isn't very fun and if you take it seriously it ruins any round you're playing because it is a job. It isn't like it opens doors that most people that do it can't get into anyway either. I have more access to play places through people I know and the clubs I belong to than GD provides me. Oh and it costs money. If those things appeal to you then you should be able to get in.




    Yeah, that's the same email address I sent my requests to. Radio silence.




    It takes time.



    I sent my first email December 2017, got a response and application April 2018 and was told the next selection was end of October 2018, No response so i followed up November and by the end of November they send out an email.



    Just be patient with it.
  • raynorfan1raynorfan1 Members Posts: 3,541 ✭✭
    The thing I find interesting (or, actually, boring) is how little volatility there is on the list, especially towards the top. Only two courses in the Top 50 moved more than 4 slots - and both were in the 40's (Castle Pines and Camargo). The entire top 50 is separated by 7.5 points...yet there's very little movement. Which points to an incredibly disciplined / structured evaluation process.



    I think the drive towards consensus, especially around specific pecking order, is bad for the rankings (but maybe good for golf). The only interesting things are big moves (Essex), new entrants (MPCC), and big falls (Sahalee). I also think that Myopia Hunt's ranking has validated their approach towards raters in recent years.
  • johnnylongballjohnnylongball Members Posts: 549 ✭✭
    edited Jan 4, 2019 3:25pm #22

    az2au wrote:


    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.

    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.


    If you meet the requirements then it really isn't now though (verifiable 5 index or less, ability to play and rate at least a dozen clubs per year). They doubled the number of panelists a couple of years ago.



    https://www.golfdige...e-golden-ticket



    Honestly though I'd tell you that it isn't very fun and if you take it seriously it ruins any round you're playing because it is a job. It isn't like it opens doors that most people that do it can't get into anyway either. I have more access to play places through people I know and the clubs I belong to than GD provides me. Oh and it costs money. If those things appeal to you then you should be able to get in.




    Yeah, that's the same email address I sent my requests to. Radio silence.




    It takes time.



    I sent my first email December 2017, got a response and application April 2018 and was told the next selection was end of October 2018, No response so i followed up November and by the end of November they send out an email.



    Just be patient with it.




    I sent an email to them in August of 2017. Do you think 17 months is enough patience?



    Maybe I should pull an Andy Dufresne and send them a letter a week.
  • thechief16thechief16 Hits it left and left of left Members Posts: 2,438 ✭✭
    Seeing Essex shoot up the list makes me so happy. It's such a fun course. The first "panelist comment" sums it up perfectly. And that is just the front 9. I think I've played 10 courses on that top 100 list and it is far and away my favorite.
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  • Doc420Doc420 Members Posts: 2,325 ✭✭
    So what list was Sweetens Cove rankd at 50 last year?
  • mci711mci711 ChicagoMembers Posts: 1,024 ✭✭
    Doc420 wrote:


    So what list was Sweetens Cove rankd at 50 last year?




    Golfweek top 100 modern courses.. Cool place, but nowhere near anything in this top 100 in my opinion. It is a really nice place though, awesome 9 hole track. But the golf hipsters like Zac Blair and Fried Egg are trying to make it the "different" and cool thing in golf.
  • FairwayFredFairwayFred Sponsors Posts: 4,020 ✭✭
    Doc420 wrote:


    So what list was Sweetens Cove rankd at 50 last year?




    Digest doesn't include 9 hole courses in its Top 100 rankings so Sweetens Cove, Dunes Club etc are not eligible.
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  • MobMob Just Another Lefty Members Posts: 3,470 ✭✭
    Monterey Peninsula Country Club has 2 really good courses. The Dunes course was redone a couple of years ago, so I am not surprised that it ended up on the list. Initiation fee there is now up to $315,000.00



    The remodel at Bel-Air isn't my favorite. They were trying to "restore" the course to it's original design, which has been a recent fad amongst some of the older courses. This one is so-so. They removed a bunch of trees, then they took out most of the creeks and ponds on the front nine. Instead, they put this mix of sand and grass which looks weird and is unplayable. I loved the course before the remodel, and still like it a lot, but it is a step down in my eyes.
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  • Roadking2003Roadking2003 AustinMembers Posts: 5,303 ✭✭
    mci711 wrote:


    Surprised from what I have heard Mammoth Dunes is better than Sand Valley, from just about everyone that has played both.





    Do you have a link?




    I played both in August and SV is much better than MD. MD is fun, but it wouldn't make my top 200.
  • Roadking2003Roadking2003 AustinMembers Posts: 5,303 ✭✭
    az2au wrote:


    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.


    If you meet the requirements then it really isn't now though (verifiable 5 index or less, ability to play and rate at least a dozen clubs per year). They doubled the number of panelists a couple of years ago.




    Interesting. So the list should be titled "Top 100 courses for low handicappers and screw 80% of all golfers".
  • raynorfan1raynorfan1 Members Posts: 3,541 ✭✭
    edited Jan 6, 2019 8:28am #30

    az2au wrote:


    az2au wrote:

    elwhippy wrote:


    Interesting reading as per usual but I would love to know how you get on the rating panel as so many of the courses are members and guests only. I imagine Doak and Fazio could design a crazy golf course and get it ranked looking at the list.


    It isn't that hard. You apply.




    There used to be a link on the Golf Digest website how to apply to become a rater. I don't know if it is still up. It was basically an email link. I have submitted requests to begin the application process at least twice over the past few years. No response whatsoever. Based on my experience, it's rather difficult to become a rater. I couldn't even get the process started.


    If you meet the requirements then it really isn't now though (verifiable 5 index or less, ability to play and rate at least a dozen clubs per year). They doubled the number of panelists a couple of years ago.




    Interesting. So the list should be titled "Top 100 courses for low handicappers and screw 80% of all golfers".




    I’m not a 5 handicap, but I think it’s a fair requirement in trying to build a pool of 2000+ raters. They need to have some proxy of general golf knowledge, and there probably isn’t a better one than handicap.



    Courses are also all rated from the back tees, by definition, and how difficult they are is a key metric; so having better golfers as raters is rational.
  • Roadking2003Roadking2003 AustinMembers Posts: 5,303 ✭✭
    raynorfan1 wrote:




    I'm not a 5 handicap, but I think it's a fair requirement in trying to build a pool of 2000+ raters. They need to have some proxy of general golf knowledge, and there probably isn't a better one than handicap.



    Courses are also all rated from the back tees, by definition, and how difficult they are is a key metric; so having better golfers as raters is rational.




    I just don't agree. Lots of 10 cappers are more in touch with golf than low cappers. Just because you have the skill to play golf doesn't mean you have the skill to evaluate courses.



    And rating a course is 100% subjective, so why do you want only the opinion of low cappers? If 80% of the golfers are above a five, then why have the minority rate courses for the majority?



    I can rate a course from the back tees just as well as a 5 capper. And why should a course rating be based on tees that 95% of us never play?



    Maybe a better proxy is how many times you play per year.
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