Mt. Prospect Golf Club

Posted by cjsharp1 on May 21, 2013 in Courses 0 Comments

The first round for the 2013 golf season takes me to Mt. Prospect Golf Club in Mt. Prospect, Illinois, approximately 23 miles northwest of downtown Chicago. The club is the only golf course that belongs to the Mt. Prospect Park District. The course was originally built as a private course when it opened in 1929.

The course features four par-3 and three par-5 holes for a total par of 71 at a length of 6,309 yards from the back tees. There are four sets of tees: the back Blue tees, the 5,923 yard White tees, the 5,307 yard Golf tees, and the 5,028 yard forward Red tees.  The course is a traditional parkland style course that you’ll often find throughout Chicago. The fairways are generally open and straight, formed from rolling hills and surround by medium- and large-sized trees. You’ll find doglegs on the 5th and 10th holes (both 354 yard par-4’s), the 13th hole (a 277 yard par-4), the 17th hole (a 478 yard par-5), and the 18th hole (a 377 yard par-4). Water touches eleven of the holes, all of which you’ll need to carry your shot over the water, though they are mostly just small streams or creeks. Bunkers are found on every hole, either near the fairway, near the green, or both. The bunkers could use a bit of work, or at least some filtering of the large clumps (or maybe they were rocks). The greens are average size and offered some challenging putts throughout the round.  The greens felt generally soft for my round, though that could have been due to some recent rain. A notable green is the 7th hole (a 170 yard par-3) where a steep hill cuts through the green and requires you to be accurate with your shots and putts in order to avoid a difficult uphill putt.

For the first round of the season, I feel like I played pretty well. I didn’t get to practice much during the winter break, so I was thinking I was going to be a bit rusty. I felt like I had some pretty good drives, and it seemed like I was getting good distance, even if I pushed or sliced. My shots with my hybrid felt really nice. I think this year will be the season where I start to get really comfortable with my fairway wood and hybrid shots. I had good iron shots with decent accuracy, though I left many of them short. My short game was bad; I left many wedge shots short. My putting was decent. The greens were a little bumpy and needed some work, but it still is early in the season, so that might improve.

I ended up with a 102 (31 over par, 52 on the front nine, 50 on the back nine). This consisted of two pars, six bogeys, five double bogeys, and all others worse. I had two 1-putts and four 3-putts, along with five sand shots and two penalties. I really want to work on eliminating penalty shots this season. I know if I can do that, and keep 3-putts to a minimum, I should be able to break 90.

Mt. Prospect Golf Club – Scores & Stats
Course length: 5,923 yards (white tee boxes)
Course par: 71
Course rating/slope: 69.3/125 (white tee boxes)
My score: 102 (31 over par)

Mt. Prospect Golf Club
600 See Gwun Avenue
Mt. Prospect, IL 60056

Goals for the 2013 Golf Season

Posted by cjsharp1 on April 27, 2013 in News 0 Comments

Golf season is upon us, so it’s time to set the goals for 2013. Here they are:

  • Break 90 – Once again I’m starting with this. I got really close to meeting this last season, so I think it’s time to knock this off the list this season.
  • Score an average of 100 – I’m rolling this goal over from last season to this season. This number was going down over the years (115 in 2009110 in 2010105 in 2011, and 100 in 2012), but at some time it’s bound to level off. Maybe this is when it begins? I hope not.
  • Play 20 rounds of golf on 15 new courses – Once again, I’m carrying over this goal from last year. If things go like they have the last two years, I should be able to meet this goal fairly easily.
  • Birdie a par 5 – While I did get an eagle in 2012, I’m carrying this goal over from 2012.
  • Two birdies in one round – Also carrying this goal over from 2012.
  • Eagle – Let’s do this again! Par 4… par 5… doesn’t matter. Just make an eagle.
  • Five pars in one round – I’m also keeping this goal from last year. I did meet this goal last year, but it was on a pretty short course. I want to do this on a par 69+ course.

For technical goals:

  • Lower handicap to 20 or less – In 2009 my handicap was 36.4, in 2010 it was 33.4, in 2011 it was 27.7, and in 2012 it was 24.8. I’m trying to follow somewhat of a pattern.
  • Raise fairway hit percentage to 42% – This needs to get better. Right now it’s at 35%
  • Raise green-in-regulation percentage to 12% – Right now, it’s at 10.5%.
  • Lower average putts to 1.9 – Right now, it’s at 2.07. I’m going to focus more on my short game this season.

Let the season begin!

Year in Review: 2012

Posted by cjsharp1 on April 26, 2013 in News 0 Comments

Let’s get right to it… On to my year in review for the 2012 golf season.

Statistics

According to my statistics on oobgolf.com (based on the last 20 scores):

  • My handicap is 24.8
  • I’ve had a 103.6 scoring average
  • 35% of fairways hit
  • Average 2.07 putts per hole
  • 10.2% GIR (green in regulation)

These statistics, with the exception of the fairways hit and average putts per hole, are an improvement over the 2011 golf season.

2012 Goals

  • Break 90 – I didn’t meet this goal this season. The closest I got was 92.
  • Score an average of 100 – While I did lower my scoring average compared to the previous season, I didn’t hit this goal. It did seem like I was in the 90’s more often this season though.
  • Play 20 rounds of golf on 15 new courses –  As you can see above, I played 30 rounds of golf, including 23 rounds at new courses.
  • Birdie a par 5 – Let’s just skip this one and focus on the eagle below…
  • Two birdies in one round – I didn’t meet this goal, though I know I was close many times. Does an eagle count as two birdies?
  • Eagle – I knocked this one off the list really early in the season when I luckily made an eagle on the par-5 6th at Fresh Meadow Golf Club.
  • Five pars in one round – It’s a little hard to consider this completed, because I did make seven pars at Edgebrook Golf Course, but it was a pretty short course. Let’s just say I met this goal…

For the more technical goals (based on the last 20 scores):

  • Lower handicap to 23 or less – I got somewhat close with a 24.8.
  • Raise fairway hit percentage to 42% – Nope. Fairways hit actually went down.
  • Raise green-in-regulation percentage to 11% – This did go up a little to 10.2%, but I didn’t meet the goal.
  • Lower average putts to 1.9 – This actually got worse with a 2.07. I need to eliminate 3-putts.

Final Thoughts

The 2012 golf season was equally as productive as the 2011 golf season. 30 rounds played, with 23 new courses completed… I’m pretty happy with that. Much like 2011, I didn’t think I would get to play that often in 2012. A couple open weekends gave me the opportunity to play more rounds than normal. As of right now, I’m a little under halfway done with the project. If I keep this pace, I should be able to complete the project in 4-5 years.

As far as my game, I still think my drives are getting better and straighter, but I still want to get a bit more distance out of them. At least I’m starting to see more distance out of my irons. Maybe this year I’ll focus a little more on my short game and try to eliminate those 3-putts.

And just how I ended the last two years in review, I really want to say ‘Thank You!’ to all who are following my progress, and joining me along the way.

Glenmary Country Club [Field Trip]

Posted by cjsharp1 on December 15, 2012 in Field Trips 0 Comments

A round of golf in December doesn’t come too often in this part of the country, especially if you want to play without needing to wear a thick coat. This round, though, wasn’t in the Chicagoland area, but instead in Louisville, Kentucky at Glenmary Country Club (funny enough though, the temperatures turned out to be better in Chicago that particular weekend). Glenmary is located approximately 15 miles southwest of downtown Louisville. The course was designed by John Addington, and opened in 1990.

The course features three par-3 and three par-5 holes for a total par of 72 at a length of 6,540 yards from the back tees. There are four sets of tees: the back Black tees, the White tees that drops to the length to 6,050 yards, the Gold tees that drops the length to 5,493 yards, and the forward Red tees that drops the length to 5,093 yards. The course weaves its way throughout the Glenmary neighborhood, which is a fairly hilly community with a lot of large trees. The fairways are generally straight, formed from rolling hills and surrounded by large trees. Water touches ten of the holes, mostly on the front nine.  You’ll need to carry over water many times, either on your tee shot or on your way to the green, though mostly just are just small creeks. The largest water hazard you’ll find is small pond in front of the tee box the 10th hole, where a straight tee shot over 150 yards will safely find the fairway. Bunkers are found on all holes, either near the fairways, near the greens, or both, and they generally seemed in good condition, given the circumstances of a late Fall round. The greens are of average size and difficulty (though it’s hard to accurately comment on greens this time of the year).

I really liked this course. The layout and difficulty of the holes kept the whole round fun and interesting, and the environment around the course is beautiful. I do wish I got to play this in the summer. The only thing that really bothered me with this course is the condition of the cart paths, which were very rough in some areas.

My round went fairly smoothly and I was pretty happy how it turned out. My drives were really good throughout the round, with only a couple of slight pushes or pulls. I think I was expecting to play worse than I did, so actually making straight and accurate shots was nice. My iron shots were about average, as was my short game with my wedges. My putting was random throughout, but it was difficult to stay consistent considering the green condition and weather (some light rain started halfway through the round).

I finished the round with a 95 (23 over par, 48 on the front nine,  47 on the back nine). This consisted of three pars, eight bogeys, six double bogeys, and a triple bogey. I had six 1-putts and four 3-putts, along with four sand shots and three penalties.

This round marks the end of my 2012 golf season, which actually turned out to be a decent season for the project and my golf game. I feel like I ended the season on a good note, and I’m hoping I can start the 2013 season right were I left off.

Glenmary Country Club – Scores & Stats
Course length: 6,050 yards (white tee boxes)
Course par: 72
Course rating/slope: 70.0/128 (white tee boxes)
My score: 95 (23 over par)

Glenmary Country Club
10200 Glenmary Farm Dr.
Louisville, KY 40291

Deer Creek Golf Club

Posted by cjsharp1 on December 11, 2012 in Courses 0 Comments

It’s not very often you can play a round of golf in Chicago near the end of November, at least, not without needing to wear a heavy jacket. Taking advantage of the cool weather, I headed to the southern suburbs of Chicago to Deer Creek Golf Club. Deer Creek is located in University Park, Illinois, approximately 35 miles south of downtown Chicago, which is really close to the southern edge of the project circle. The course opened in 1975, and was designed by E. Lawrence Packard, who designed or remodeled many courses throughout the United States in the 1960’s and 1970’s, along with a couple courses in Egypt and Guatemala.

The course features the standard four par-3 and four par-5 holes for a total par of 72 at a length of 6,905 yards from the back ‘black’ tees. There are five sets of tees in total, including the ‘blue’ tees at 6,391 yards, the ‘white’ tees at 6,001 yards, the ‘gold’ tees at 5,302 yards, and the ‘green’ tees at 5,112 yards. The fairways are generally straight, open, and flat, surrounded by medium sized trees that give the course the standard traditional layout look that you see at many courses throughout Chicago. You’ll encounter two dogleg holes the round: the 7th hole (a 541 yard par-5) that doglegs left, and the 18th hole (a 402 yard par-4) that doglegs right, both of which dogleg around water hazards. Water hazards touch six holes in total, and you’ll only need to carry over water on two holes (if you play your shots right), both of which are par-3’s. Bunkers are found throughout the course, both near the fairways and near the greens. The greens are of average size and difficulty, and also seemed to be of average speed.

For this round, I was joined by Drew, my cousin-in-law that just turned 18. His golf game reminds me a lot of my golf game when I first started out: a beginner in every aspect of the game, who really wants to improve and learn the how to golf. I’m hoping he’ll be joining me for more rounds next season.

I actually didn’t play too badly, considering I haven’t played or practiced in nearly a month and I almost put my clubs in storage. My drives started out pretty well, suffered around the turn, then improved at the end of the back nine. I had the most issues on my tees shots with my mid and long irons. I just could get comfortable with the swing. On the fairways, my irons were a bit better, but I lacked on distance. My short game was pretty good, but I know I could improve more with accuracy. My putting was somewhat random but generally decent.

I ended up shooting a 101 (29 over par, 50 on the front nine, 51 on the back nine). This consisted of one par, eight bogeys, and all others worse. I 1-putted twice and 3-putted four times, and I had five sand shots and three penalty shots. This round is about how I play on average, so not too bad considering the couple of weeks off. And who knows… with weather like this, maybe I’ll get in another round before the end of the year.

Deer Creek Golf Club – Scores & Stats
Course length: 6,001 yards (white tee boxes)
Course par: 72
Course rating/slope: 69.0/120 (white tee boxes)
My score: 101 (29 over par)

Deer Creek Golf Club
25055 S. Western Ave.
University Park, IL 60484

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