Photos

 

Oak Hill Country Club - East Course

Home of the 2013 PGA Championship. Photos courtesy of pga.com.

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    No. 1: 460 yards, Par 4 The tee shot is the most difficult feature of this starting hole. A long, carrying drive can take advantage of a fairway downslope at the 260-yard mark. If you carry to this point, the ball should run another 30 to 40 yards, leaving a short iron onto a generous green. The danger off the tee is an out of bounds to the right and trees on both sides of the fairway. A player's first shot of the day will test his driving skills and set the tone for the rest of the round.
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    No. 2: 401 yards, Par 4 A tee shot with a long iron or fairway wood will put players in position for a short-iron approach to a small green. Deep bunkers are in play on both sides of the fairway and are to be avoided. Keeping the iron shot below the hole will afford the player the best birdie chance. The green is very quick when putting from behind the hole.
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    No. 3: 214 yards, Par 3 A very difficult par 3. Most players will hit a mid to long iron onto a very small green. Deep bunkers guard both sides of the green. Under no circumstances do you want to miss the green long and to the right. There will be almost no chance to get the ball up and down from this position. This hole will give up very few birdies and always ranks as one of the hardest holes at Oak Hill.
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    No. 4: 570 yards, Par 5 This hole always plays as the easiest of the 18. It will give up the most birdies; 50 percent more than any other hole. It is reachable in two shots by many in the field. The difficulty off the tee is taking the gamble for the long ball with a high, fading tee shot. This shot will have to go around and over two very deep fairway bunkers. There is also out of bounds on the right side. If you hit into these bunkers, you will have to lay up with a 7- to 9-iron. Because of these difficult bunkers, some players will play this hole in the "lay-up mode:" long iron off the tee, long iron second shot and full wedge onto the green. With the exception of the back-center hole location, the green is receptive to shots. When the pin is placed on top of this narrow knob, birdies will not come easy.
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    No. 5: 428 yards, Par 4 Without question, this will be one of the most difficult holes during the tournament as it features one of the most dangerous tee shots at Oak Hill. Your tee shot must travel through a shoot of trees for more than 215 yards and then avoid a creek that winds itself into the landing area at the 250-yard mark. Heavy rough on the left side makes playing safe over there no bargain. If you happen to hit a good drive, you will have a mid to short iron to a green that is fronted by that same creek. Shots landing short will be wet. The green offers some great hole locations, making birdies difficult to come by. Expect more double-bogeys on this hole than any other.
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    No. 6: 175 yards, Par 3 This will be the easiest of the par 3s. The green has a deep bunker on the right side and a creek that winds itself around the green on the left and front sides. Most players will hit 6-,7- or 8-iron onto this green. The back-right hole location will be the most difficult to get to. In the 1989 U.S. Open, four players made a hole-in-one on this hole during the first hour and a half of the first round. A fun hole to watch.
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    No. 7: 461 yards, Par 4 A truly great par 4 and one of Oak Hill's finest. This is another hole where distance has been added, up to 30 more yards. This is a very tight driving hole with the fairway width about 22 yards. There is a creek to avoid on the right side that comes up close to the fairway. Trees on the right keep the players from bailing out on that side. Hit it in the creek, and a double-bogey will likely follow. The green is one of the smaller ones on the course. A good drive here will leave a mid-iron to the green.
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    No. 8: 428 yards, Par 4 A beautiful, straightaway hole that will let the player try and hit a long drive. The fairway bunkers on the left side are very deep. If a player drives into them, he may not be able to reach the green because of the deepness of the bunkers. Trees on the right protect that side of the fairway. A mid-to-short iron will be hit onto a large green that offers some interesting hole locations, especially on the back-right portion of the green.
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    No. 9: 452 yards, Par 4 An uphill dogleg right hole that has really been beefed up. A new tee has added 35 yards to the hole, making it a very difficult driving hole. "Death Valley" is to the right. Any drive missing the fairway in the right rough is almost a chip out. The left side of the fairway slopes to the left so that any drive landing on the far left side will kick into the rough. Because of this, the fairway width at 25 yards plays much narrower. The second shot will be an uphill mid-iron shot to a green that is shaped smaller in the back. Don't miss the second shot down the hill on the left. Up and downs from this spot will be few and far between.
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    No. 10: 429 yards, Par 4 A beautiful downhill hole that will require another accurate drive. Some players will lay up off of the tee with a fairway wood or long iron. Because the green is small, hitting from the fairway is a must to control the ball on the second shot. This is another hole where the slopes in the fairway make the tee shot much tighter than normal. A bunker on the left protects this side of the hole and trees and a creek protect the right side. The green has a small slope in the middle that makes it difficult to get close to the hole on the second shot. This hole is sneaky tough.
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    No. 11: 226 yards, Par 3 Traditionally one of the easier holes on the course, this par 3 has been made much more difficult with the addition of 30 more yards. This will be a long-iron tee shot hit to a fairly receptive target. The traditional left-to-right wind will make some hole locations play especially difficult. A creek winds its way to the right of the green and some balls will find it. The green is surrounded by bunkers but they are not terribly penal.
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    No. 12: 372 yards, Par 4 It will be interesting to see if some players will hit a driver to see how close they can get to the green. The green can't be driven. But, with a subtle downhill slope in the fairway a longer hitter can get to within 50 yards of the green. The smart play will be to tee off with a long iron and hit the tee shot 150 yards from the green. This is another very tight driving hole with trees guarding both sides of the fairway. A short-iron approach to a wonderfully shaped green is all that will be left. Best hole locations are in the back, left part of the green. This is a great viewing hole for the spectators.
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    No. 13: 598 yards, Par 5 This hole has never been reached in two shots but that could change during the tournament, as someone with two fantastic shots might run one up on the green. The "Hill of Fame" hole is normally played with a fairway wood off the tee. This should keep the drive short of the creek that bisects the fairway at 300 yards. This creek meanders down the right side, also coming into play. A long-iron second shot will put the player 125 yards from the green, avoiding the right side fairway bunkers and the tree trouble on the left. From there the player will hit a wedge onto a receptive green. Keeping the ball below the hole is a must because the green is especially quick from back to front.
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    No. 14: 323 yards, Par 4 A very short par 4 that will allow some daring players to use a driver to see how close to the green they can hit it. Most of the field will use a long iron to make sure that they hit their second shot from the fairway. The uphill second shot to a two-tier green requires a play from the fairway if you want to knock it close with a wedge. There will be some birdies here but not as many as you may think.
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    No. 15: 181 yards, Par 3 A difficult downhill par 3 that requires a mid-iron to a narrow green. Water on the right is the big fear, especially when the normal wind is blowing toward the water. It's very easy to hit your tee shot through the green, leaving a very difficult up and down. A couple of bunkers guard the left side. Tricky hole locations make this green difficult to putt.
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    No. 16: 439 yards, Par 4 This hole usually plays much shorter than the yardage. Most players will be able to carry the tee shot far enough to hit the fairway on the downslope and the ball will run another 30-plus yards. That's the good news. The bad news is that the fairway is very narrow in the landing area and there is a slope on the left side that will kick most balls into the deep rough. Most shots onto the green will be hit with a short iron to a fairly large green.
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    No. 17: 509 yards, Par 4 This dogleg right hole, along with hole No. 5, are the toughest on the course. It is a great driving hole that requires a left-to-right tee shot that must hug the right side or the ball will run through the fairway on the left side. Hit it in the rough on the left side and you will probably be chipping out to the fairway. Heavy rough and pine trees guard that side of the fairway. Trees on the right side will take care of any drives that go in that direction. The undulating green makes it difficult to stop your second shot close to the hole. This hole traditionally gives up the fewest birdies and allows for the most bogeys. Most players will be hitting a longer iron onto this green that is well bunkered on both sides.
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    No. 18: 497 yards, Par 4 A new tee added for the 2003 PGA Championship added 30-plus yards to this most difficult finishing hole. Another great driving hole where a left-to-right shot is required. A big drive is needed in order to have a mid-to-long iron into the green. Problems off the tee are everywhere. Deep bunkers on the right, hills and trees on the left will make it difficult to hit the green if you are not in the fairway. The green is set right at the base of a very steep hill. Any shot hitting short of the green will not make it up this slope. The green, although wide, is very shallow. Shots must have good distance control to hit this green. A fantastic finishing hole.