New Golfweek classic/modern rankings

Originally posted on jeffshelman.com

If you pay even a slight bit of attention to golf, you know that everybody is in the ranking game. Golf Digest has been in the game for a long time. Golf Magazine has their own rankings. Even business journals do ridiculous rankings based only on course ratings (and are kind of worthless in my estimation).

My favorite rankings, however, come from Golfweek. The weekly publication’s biggest two rankings are its listing of its top 100 Classic courses and top 100 modern courses. I like these because classic courses and modern courses are two totally different animals. For a Minnesota example, how exactly do you compare Interlachen Country Club, which was built in the early 1900s and Spring Hill Golf Club, which is around 10 years old? One was built when technology didn’t exactly allow for a lot of earth moving, the other during a time when dirt was so easily moved that visual deception is part of the designer’s game.

I, personally, am a fan of classic courses. I love how they fit pretty naturally into the earth. I like that in many cases controlling your golf ball is as important as attempting to overpower the course. I like that classic courses are much more walkable and very few are cart-path only or feature long green-to-tee walks.

The other cool addition this year is that they also ranked the next 100 modern courses and the next 100 classic courses. So we essentially have 400 courses ranked.

For my Minnesota friends, here are some findings:

Courses on the Classic list:

52. Interlachen

61. White Bear Yacht Club

72. Minikahda

93. Northland

147. Somerset

172. Golden Valley

176. Woodhill

On the modern list:

59. Spring Hill (making its debut in the rankings)

83. Hazeltine National Golf Club

115. Windsong Farm Golf Club

What I’ve played:

Classic

17. Pinehurst No. 2

52. Interlachen

58. Lawsonia (Links)

70. Pine Needles

72. Minikahda

78. Rolling Green (Pa.)

93. Northland

101. Kirtland Country Club

136. Idle Hour Country Club

147. Somerset

159. Mid Pines Club

172. Golden Valley

176. Woodhill

188. Lake Merced

Modern

12. Muirfield Village Golf Club

46. Blackwolf Run (River)

58. Paa-Ko Ridge

59. Spring Hill

77. Kapalua Plantation

80. Briggs Ranch

83. Hazeltine National Golf Club

85. We-Ko-Pa (Saguaro)

88. Cog Hill #4 (but prior to recent renovation)

93. Valhalla Golf Club

109. Harvester

115. Windsong Farm

172. Sugarloaf Mountain

176. Musgrove Mill

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