Whitinsville, Mass. – Here’s a golf trivia question you might win 10 times out of 10.
What Bay State golf course was recently rated by Golf.com as the second best nine-hole course in the world?
Answer: Whitinsville Golf Club in the village of Whitinsville, just outside Worcester in central Massachusetts.
If your golf course was listed as the second best in the U.S.A. it would be quite an accomplishment. Whitinsville Golf Club has the distinction of being rated as the second best 9-hole golf course in the world.
Donald Ross is credited with designing 400 courses. Oakland Hills which hosted 12 majors, and Pinehurst #2 are some of the better-known courses that challenged the skills of legendary golfers like Nicklaus, Palmer and Tiger. Whitinsville is just as challenging as any Ross course that hosted a major.
Ross was known as somebody that wanted to design a course without making major changes to the current topography. Whitinsville is a perfect example of this. Rolling hills and deep valleys create a variety of holes that demand your concentration from the first hole.
The first hole at Whitinsville is a 526-yard Par-5. The fairway is generous but your tee shot can end up in a valley where you lose sight of the green. When you get close to the green you will see a putting surface that falls dramatically toward the fairway. Ross was known for putting mounds (he called them crowns) on his greens. Check the pin placement carefully, otherwise your putt can roll off the green and back into the fairway. John Daly had the same problem at the U.S. Open at Pinehurst.
The second shot is from an elevated tee to small greens and big bunkers. It is only 149-yards from the back tees, but beware of bunkers guarding the green.
A par-4 hole does not need to be over 400-yards to be considered a great hole. Hole No. 3 at Whitinsville is 372-yards from the tips. Hit a tee shot that will leave you about 150-yards to a green that is carved out of the side of a hill. It looks easy but hit it right and you have a tricky shot over a deep bunker. Go too far left and you have to chip off a hill some native grass and it will be almost impossible to keep the ball on the green.
Climb the hill to the elevated tee on the 358-yard par-4 fourth hole and enjoy the view. Six mounds covered with fescue guard the left side of the fairway so hit the fade. The green is tucked into a grove of trees and is bordered by a stone wall.
The Par-4 ninth hole is considered one of the best in the country. Tee off from an elevated tee and fly your ball over a large marsh. It is a dogleg to an elevated green, so cut the corner if you dare. A high-handicapper can play it left and try to get home in three. But if you are a power hitter let it fly and try to birdie the toughest 416-yard par- 4 you will find anywhere.
On the property is a practice range adjacent to the first fairway. I suggest you loosen up a bit before you take on the second best 9-hole course in the world, according to Golf.com. The conditions are pristine and outside deck overlooks the ninth green. Whitinsville is a private club and not currently accepting new members.