The second installment of our new audio documentary series digs into the history behind the venue of this week's Presidents Cup, Royal Melbourne Golf Club. This Australian gem exists in its current form because, in 1926, the famous British architect Dr. Alister MacKenzie decided to sail across the world and spend two and a half months down under. During his visit, he not only drew up plans for the West Course at Royal Melbourne but also consulted at many golf clubs throughout Australia. His apparent influence on golf in the country was enormous. So the question we ask in this episode is, essentially, how in the world did MacKenzie do all of that in 10 weeks? Or are we all giving him too much credit?Many thanks to Mike Clayton (@mikeclaytongolf), Mike Cocking (@OCMGolf), Neil Crafter (golfstrategies.com.au), and Sean Tully (@tullfescue) for contributing to this story. This episode features music from Kevin McLeod (incompetech.filmmusic.io) as well as Low Light and Borrtex (artlist.io).
Something new on The Fried Egg podcast today! This episode has a documentary format. That is, rather than the usual interview, it takes the form of a story, with voice-overs from Garrett Morrison and excerpts from a conversation with Ladies European Tour player Meghan MacLaren. Think Revisionist History, but without the golf hatred. This is not a permanent format change, obviously—just a new direction we’re exploring.This past year, Meg MacLaren won the Women’s New South Wales Open and placed fifth on the LET Order of Merit, but she's still looking for a way onto the LPGA Tour. In October, she came to the U.S. for LPGA Qualifying School, which culminated with the two-week, 144-hole Q-Series at Pinehurst Resort. This episode tells the story of Meg’s Q-School experience. It also explores her thoughts about Harry Potter, blogging (which she does very well at megmaclaren.com), and the state of the women’s game.
This episode was created and hosted by Garrett Morrison and edited by J Vierck. It features music from Kevin MacLeod, Yehezkel Raz, Borrtex, and Oak and Cherry.
Golf course architect Keith Rhebb joins Andy at Winter Park for a chat about his recent work. The two start by discussing the continued success of Winter Park, which was slammed on an early Thursday afternoon. The conversation moves to some of Keith and Riley Johns' new work, their short course at Forest Dunes as well as the continued restoration efforts at Rolling Green. Keith also opens up to how it is to juggle his growing independent design business with his shaping work at Coore & Crenshaw as well as what he learned about Bill Coore from his time at Old Town.
Cedar Rapids Country Club Superintendent Tom Feller joins Andy to discuss his life in turf. Tom and Andy start by talking about his morning routines which include no breakfast and regular walks of the golf course. The conversation then moves to how Tom got into turf and his early career in Myrtle Beach and Quincy, Illinois. Cedar Rapids C.C.'s transformation has been well-documented and Tom has had a big hand in the improvements made both architecturally and agronomically. Andy asks how Tom was able to accomplish the massive tree removal and restoration work for such a low cost while not shutting down the course. The conversation ends with Tom spreading virtues on the tree management and flood mitigation work they have done at Cedar Rapids. Our Superintendent Series is brought to you by Toro Golf.
Former University of Illinois standout, Nick Hardy joins Andy on the podcast to discuss his experience making the transition from college to the professional game. Nick talks about building structure to his practice sessions, dealing with some early disappointment, playing in his 3rd U.S. Open and breaking through 2nd stage of Q-School.
In part two of our podcast with golf architect Jaeger Kovich, he and Andy discuss critiques in golf architecture, Jaeger's Mt. Rushmore of golf architects and whether or not Seth Raynor is overrated. Jaeger also gives some advice for how he goes about seeing golf courses and planning his visits as well as his pet peeve in golf architecture. If you missed part 1, be sure to check it out to learn about Jaeger's background and how he got into golf architecture as a kid from New York City.
Golf Course Architect Jaeger Kovich joins Andy to talk about his career to date. Jaeger talks about how he got into architecture and cracked through despite graduating into the economic downturn in '09. The pair then talks about Jaeger's childhood playing golf in New York City, Jaeger's recent experience in France and architect Tom Simpson as well as the great A.W. Tillinghast courses in NY.
Blue Mound Golf and Country Club's Superintendent Alex Beson-Crone joins the podcast. Andy and Alex discuss how Alex got into the turf industry and his early career at Erin Hills through its construction. The conversation then centers on Alex's transition from Erin Hills to the Seth Raynor-designed Blue Mound Golf and Country Club. Our Superintendent Series is brought to you by Toro Golf.
Continuing their debriefing of their early-October Southern swing, Andy and Garrett review their visit to Roaring Gap Club in the Blue Ridge Mountains near the North Carolina-Virginia border. A 1925 Donald Ross design, Roaring Gap is charming and faithfully restored—an old-fashioned hideaway. Andy and Garrett talk routing, topography, mowing lines, and whether Ross courses can be compared to Bruce Springsteen albums. They wrap up the conversation with a tribute to maybe the best golf town in America: Aiken, SC, home to the public Aiken Golf Club as well as the private Palmetto Golf Club. They touch on not only the outstanding architecture of these two courses but also the laid-back, welcoming atmosphere that defines them and the town in the general.
In the first part of a conversation about their recent trip to the Carolinas, Andy and Garrett dig into two fascinating Perry Maxwell courses in Winston-Salem, NC: Reynolds Park Golf Course and Old Town Club. First, though, Andy reviews his visit to Mooresville Golf Club, a very good affordable course near Charlotte. Andy and Garrett then talk about Reynolds Park, a striking municipal course that they both regard as one of the top candidates for restoration in the country. They finish the episode with an in-depth discussion of Old Town Club. From its routing to its simple yet ingenious greens, this 1939 Perry Maxwell design, beautifully restored by Coore & Crenshaw in 2013, has a lot to teach any golf architecture enthusiast.