How lucky are we that we live in an area that has some of the finest golf courses in the world. I can’t wait for spring to roll around each year so that we can start working on our golf guide—next year’s golf guide…I can’t wait for the phone to ring with someone asking, “Are you available to play Westchester Country Club next Wednesday at 12?” Now business is business, but you have to get your priorities right, so I go directly to my assistant and ask her to clear my calendar for “next Wednesday.” Or, I can’t wait to get an e-mail from Dave Donelson, one of our most talented golf writers, letting me know the latest schedule of tee times at Westchester Golf Clubs for our review. Sometime we have four tee times a week! I know, I know, tough life you say (I can almost make out the sarcasm in your voice), but this is work. Fun, satisfying, rewarding, and, yes, heady work—but work. And, yes, I am lucky.
So, after all that work on all those many pristine golf courses, we here present, among other wonderful features, “Westchester’s Mean 18.”
So how did we come up with these 18 holes—the county’s most challenging, most difficult, most infuriating holes? We went to the experts, of course. We polled the head pros at the many clubs in the county and asked them to tell us what they believed were the most hazardous holes on both their courses as well any other Westchester course.
Seventy percent told us, nominating 101 treacherous holes. We had to whittle it down to 18.
That’s when the hard work began. We—me and a panel of other golf enthusiasts—played 30 courses (no—sigh—I did not play all of them, but I did—big smile—play many of them), making for 580 holes, and then we spent countless hours discussing (sometimes over cocktails, sometimes over the phone) the merits of each hole. Of the winning 18 holes, nine are par 4s, four par 5s and five par 3s. The Mean Eighteen scorecard ended up at 6752 yards and a par 71. To find out which holes in Westchester County are the meanest and why, turn to page 38A.
Also, in this issue, we look at some of the best golf equipment and where you can get great clubs and balls locally (to find out, turn to page 12A). And if you want to get your game in shape, check out our “Pilates for Golfers” (on page 58A). They say the Catskills is coming back, so we feature a few courses worth the trip to that beautiful region (see page 52A). We also have some terrific tips from area pros (page 20A).
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A special thanks to Dave Donelson (shown left), who was instrumental in putting this guide together. I always kid Dave that he should be paying me for this assignment since he (and I) get to play some of the finest courses in the world, right in our own back yard. Dave loves the game—and loves to share his knowledge and experience. It’s clear in the many articles he contributed. And thanks to all the Golf Head Pros and Golf Courses for hosting us.
Hope to see you on the Golf Course this year, and please let me know what you think of our golf guide. And for more golf info, check out our website at westchestermagazine.com and www.hvmag.com.
Ralph A. Martinelli,