The Course That Jack Built: Valhalla GC

Jack Nicklaus discusses the changes he made to Valhalla Golf Club for the 2008 Ryder Cup Matches.

Released on 8/11/2010

Credits

Starring: Jack Nicklaus

Transcript

00:01
We're here with Jack Nicklaus to talk about Valhalla,
00:03
the site of the 2008 Ryder Cup.
00:05
Jack made a number of changes to up Valhalla.
00:07
It's a wonderful golf course,
00:08
and it's an even harder golf course now.
00:10
Jack, I wanted to ask you your sense of the overall changes.
00:14
What's the big picture effect
00:15
on the golf course, would you say?
00:17
Well, I think it makes it a stronger golf course.
00:20
It makes it a more complete golf course.
00:22
It takes some of the holes
00:23
that we really didn't
00:26
finish, you might say in many ways,
00:28
or at least didn't get them where they probably should be,
00:31
and I most of it is where it should be now.
00:35
I'll go through the golf course for you if you wanted.
00:36
Is that what you want to do?
00:37
Sure, but I was going to ask you a couple things.
00:39
One, it's a better golf course for spectators now.
00:42
That was a conscious effort, wasn't it?
00:44
Probably a little bit better.
00:45
It really, it's not a big issue about spectators
00:49
because I think the golf course
00:50
was already pretty decent for spectators.
00:52
Okay, and it went from 7,167 yards, par 72,
00:56
to 7,469, par 71, pretty significant.
00:59
Just hypothesizing, if it were a 72-hole event now,
01:03
how much tougher, how much higher in other words,
01:06
would the scores be do you think
01:08
than when the PGA handled it?
01:10
Well, I think, usually it's weather...
01:11
It's usually weather-related anyway.
01:13
But it's probably a
01:16
shot-and-a-half tougher maybe.
01:19
A couple-shot-tougher golf course,
01:20
so maybe for a tournament,
01:22
maybe six shots tougher for a tournament.
01:24
Got it, okay.
01:25
And would you characterize it
01:26
as a power or finesse course, or both, or...
01:29
Hopefully, it's a combination.
01:30
I do not like an all-power golf course.
01:32
I do not like an all-finesse golf course.
01:35
I think the combination
01:38
of that...
01:39
When you have power and you have that gift
01:42
that you ought to be able to utilize it.
01:46
I think that if you don't have that gift
01:49
and you've really developed
01:50
your ability to hit the ball straight,
01:51
keep it in play, then you ought to be able to utilize it,
01:54
so I think there's a combination and everybody's different.
01:57
And it's a challenging golf course
01:58
around the greens, isn't it?
02:00
I mean, up and down is tough.
02:02
It can be, it's not extremely severe around the greens.
02:06
You've neutralized some of the knobs, it sounds like,
02:08
as I was going through some of the changes.
02:10
Yeah, I've softened some of the greens in many areas,
02:12
but toughened them in others.
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