| THE ABBOTTS COURSE
This course always brings a great days golf, as a member here for 5 years, I have bought my handicap down from a 28 to 20 making steady progress. My lowest ever score here is an 85.
Hereís a hole-by-hole description:
Hole 1: Looks pretty straightforward par 4, but with out of bounds left and right, makes the hole very narrow. A tough starting hole if playing a medal round.
Hole 2: Medium par 3, normally bout 6-7 iron in good conditions. Lake to the right of the green so you better be straight, left or long.
Hole 3: A real testing par 5, only the longest hitters will get here in 2.
Doglegs to the left, ideally need a long drawing driver over the trees and onto the fairway, then hit a long iron or wood to a well protected green with a lake and bunker around it.
Hole 4: Longish par 4, pull the drive left and your OB go right and your probably behind some small trees, with a long shot to the elevated green, can be tough when the pin is cut high.
Hole 5: Par 4, dogleg left, ideally drive over the trees, (after waiting for the bell to be rung by group in front) should set up a 7-8 iron in to a 2 tiered green.
Hole 6: Par 3, go left and youíre in the lake, few bunkers down right. Not a to tricky providing you donít pull your tee shot, quite a big green for this course.
Hole 7: Birdie time, short par 5, reachable in 2. Drive can go almost anywhere and youíll have a shot, as thereís no out of bounds just a ditch down left and row of trees to the right.
Hole 8: Short par 4, but due to the layout you have take a long iron off the tee and aim at the big oak tree at the bottom of the fairway. A good shot will leave you with a 9-PW to green, still requires accuracy as small lake in front of the lake and OB at the back of the green.
Hole 9: Short par 4, straight forward, requires reasonably accurate tee shot then only short iron into green. Not much protection as the 2 bunkers are very shallow with hardly any lip to clear.
Hole 10: Short par 4, I like this hole as in the summer you can pull your driver out and go for the green in 1, has a lake just in front and to the left of green, but with a lot of carry it can be done. Short hitters, a 6 iron then 8 iron should suffice.
Hole 11: Long par 4, requires monster drive ideally keeping straight or slightly to right. That should leave you with short iron into a green that has a few bunkers to the left of it. Donít pull your drive left, as there is a small lake situated at perfect length to swallow your stray balls.
Hole 12: Long par 4, stroke index 2 and youíll see why. Difficult to reach in 2, out of bounds all down the right and a lake down the left as you approach the green.
A bogey 5 here is always good, par is an excellent result.
Hole 13: Short par 3, usually around PW to SW, green is protected by bunkers infront of it to left and right. SI 18 so itís the easiest on the course.
Hole 14: Par 5, reachable in 2 for long hitters, quite an open hole after your first shot.
A ditch runs horizontally across the end of the fairway, so you have to either go for it, or lay up and leave yourself 8-9 iron in.
Hole 15: Par 3, normally 7-8 iron in good conditions, elevated green with deep bunker to left and another to the right. Out of bounds awaits any shots that overshoot the green.
Hole 16: Medium par 4, requires straight tee shot, anything left is OB, also OB to the right but is generous enough. Green is protected by a few small mounds and bunker.
This hole can be a real score killer if your tee shot is not accurate.
Hole 17: Par 4, OB all the way down the right, Ditch runs across the fairway, so donít be too long. Green has bunkers both sides, although providing you tee shot it ok, shouldnít cause many problems.
Hole 18: Par 5, Get on the tee and unleash your driver, you can go left or right and still make par on this hole. Ditch runs down the left hand side and a fairway bunkers along both sides. The green has a lake to the left. The only O.Bs are the practise area (to the right) and the car park at the back of the green.
| I have recently discovered the priors course at Stapleford Abbotts and played it 5 times, it is a course that we will come back and bite you if you are not careful with the numerous lakes and ponds that surround the greens. Just when you thought you've shot a great score there is always the last hole, a par 3 which is all over water!!! All in all a very nice course laid out well and which makes you think. Another added bonus is that it doesn't get very busy, especially during the week. The greens are nicely kept and usually quite fast, a challenge to keep the dreaded 3 putt at bay! - Dan , Waltham Abbey, Essex.|