Seattle geeked to host 2010 U.S. Senior Open, U.S. Amateur
The year 2010 is shaping up to be the biggest in the Seattle area in more than a decade.
Not since the 1998 PGA Championship at Sahalee Country Club, won by Vijay Singh, has there been such a palpable buzz of anticipation about tournament golf in the Pacific Northwest. After spending two weeks exploring the Emerald city’s underrated golf scene, I better understand just how rare it is for such prestigious tournaments to come to town.
Seattle’s golf nuts can thank the USGA for generating the excitement. Sahalee will host the 2010 U.S. Senior Open almost as a serenade to local hero Freddie Couples turning 50 in October and joining the Champions Tour next season. To see “Boom Boom,” Seattle golf’s golden child from O’Dea High, win a major could whip the locals into a frenzy.
After the old guys square off July 26-Aug. 1 at Sahalee, a monumental test guarded with towering trees at every turn, the world’s best young guns will tee it up at the U.S. Amateur Aug. 23-29 on the magnificent Chambers Bay 45 minutes south of Seattle near Tacoma.
The USGA is banking on scenic Chambers Bay, a muni built in 2007 on the shores of the Puget Sound, maturing into a championship venue. Grow-in of the all-fescue course designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr. has been challenging at times, but after playing the course for the second time in five months, I saw first-hand just how much the greens have improved since May. It’s almost night-and-day how good they putt now.
The more traditional Home Course in Dupont, the co-host of the Amateur that will see stroke play action early in the week, will be the perfect complement to Chambers Bay, a wild rugged pseudo-links that will test the players’ nerves and shot-making. The tournament should be the perfect way to introduce the world via television to Chambers Bay, the home of the 2015 U.S. Open.
If you’re headed to the city of Boeing, Starbucks and Microsoft Corp., stay tuned for more reviews of Seattle’s best courses and resorts – cool places like Semiahmoo Resort, Golf and Spa and Suncadia Resort - from the Evergreen state.
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