Almost every golf course has a hole known as the “island”. It is a green connected to the mainland by a strip of land. More often than not it is a par 3 but it also happens to come across a par 5 structured like this. There seem to be only two golf islands in the true sense of the term in the world.
The DP World Tour is stopping on one of these these days.
Golf islands, history
The European circuit is staged from today in Asia where the Thailand Classic is being played. The field chosen is the Amata Spring Golf Course, not far from Bangkok.
Among the peculiarities of the course, the 17th hole undoubtedly stands out. It is a par 3 created on an artificial island in the middle of Lake Amata. It is a green about forty meters wide and the same in length, with two inevitable bunkers and a walkway.
This acts as a “landing point” because those who have the skill to put the tee shot on the green and do not suffer… from seasickness. To close the hole, the player must get on a small boat and after a few seconds set foot back on the field with sand iron and/or putter in hand.
Thailand’s golf island is floating, anchored at four points on the lake bed. The 17th hole also has a dedicated sprinkler system. Four distances for the first tee shot: ranging from 81 meters for the red hitters to 145 for the blacks, passing by the blues (128 metres) and the whites (104).
For the DP World Tour professionals the start was set back to 151 meters with the wind as an incalculable unknown. Before the Asian one there was only one other floating green. It was (and is) on the other side of the world: the “original” golf island is in the United States along the course of the Coeur d’Alena Resort, in the town of the same name in the state of Idaho.
Once again we are faced with a par 3 with four different starts. The women play from 92 meters, the professionals from 201: in between a 128 and a 155 hitter. The Idaho Floating Green is held in stability by a system of submarine cables and can be reached on a boat renamed Putter.
It also activates a 24-hour webcam to watch from any smartphone around the world both the weather conditions and the golfers who “wear it” or not. “Land on golf island and you are a hero. Get it wrong and your balls will join the thousands that are fished out by our divers every year. In any case, you will never forget this unique experience in the world of golf”.
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