Cobh Golf Club@ Marino Point
A challenging but rewarding Front Nine.
A gentle tee shot greets the golfer at the start of the round, downhill with no hazards, although the beautiful backdrop looking up the estuary beyond Little Island towards Cork may well distract. Little is gained by taking the driver; it is too risky a shot that could ruin the round before it's even started.The best option is a long iron, preferably with a touch of draw down to the dogleg. The green is bunkered front left and right and has a swale crossing just in front of the green and a steep drop along its right edge - a precision approach is therefore required.
A short Par 4 that can be played in a number of ways. To ensure some view of the green, an accurate tee shot between a set of cross bunkers on the left and further set of bunkers on the right is required. But to gain the advantage of the easiest approach, the golfer needs to take on a slightly uphill carry of 240 yards over the pair of bunkers on the left. Leave the tee shot short of these bunkers and the green surface will not be visible. The green has a low mound fronting it that must be carried. Land short or on this mound and the ball could either kick left down the slope or right into a swale that borders the right edge of the green. If the tee shot is left well short of the green we recommend aiming down the right side; if you are lucky the ball may kick left onto the green.
The relatively easy start is soon forgotten. The 3rd is a long Par 5, with a narrow undulating fairway. Out of bounds on the left and steep fescue covered slopes on the right necessitate a long accurate drive if you are to have any chance in reaching the green in two. The fairway bunker on the right is the target; land just short of it and the ball will kick left into the fairway centre. Taking on the green in two will need to carry a swale partially crossing the fairway 50 yards short of the green and a green side bunker protecting the front left of the green. Aim up the right and let the slope guide the ball around these hazards onto what is a generously sized target. Alternatively make sure the second shot is left short of the swale; golf balls running into it will end up at the bottom of the slope and a blind approach over the green side bunker.
Another long Par 4, but this time with an uphill tee shot and sure to be the toughest hole on the golf course. Golfers can either attempt a 200 yards uphill carry over the two cross bunkers on the left and be rewarded with a clear and level approach and the more favoured angle into the narrow green. Or they can choose the safer option, placing their tee shot short of the fairway bunkers, but then be left with a long blind or semi-blind approach to a green that falls way from the golfer and is protected front right by a bunker. We suggest the golfer aims to carry this bunker; the swales and slopes behind it will guide the ball onto the green.
A long, slightly uphill Par 3. A bunker 20 yard short of the green creates an area of "dead ground" between it and the green, effectively fore-shortening the hole. From the tee, the green will appear no more than a 7 or 8 iron, when the correct club is more like a 4 or 5 iron. Trouble in the form of trees and hedges skirts the full length of the hole on the right. Take at least two clubs extra and aim to carry the approach bunker. Better to be long and left.
After the previous four challenging holes, the 7th and 8th should allow the golfer to temporarily relax. The 7th is downhill from tee too green. Two bunkers protect the left of the fairway so a tee shot should either be placed short of these hazards, leaving a longer shot the green or a more precise tee shot right of the bunkers to a part of the fairway not completely visible from the tee but leaving a shorter approach from a more advantageous angle. Wherever the tee shot is placed, the approach to the green is guarded by two approach bunker 30 yards short. Nevertheless they have to be carried to reach the green and there are a series of swales in front of the green that need to be negotiated. In this instance it would be best to play target golf to the green; if the ball lands short of the green, the swales may divert the ball either left or right.
A short Par 3 playing slightly uphill. However just because it is short certainly does not guarantee a Par. The green is undulating, has a steep tier and is completely surrounded by bunkers. An accurate tee shot is required along with some confident putting if a Par is to be achieved.
A long and accurate tee shot is required to the highest point of the course between the two fairway bunkers left and Thisright. If not long enough you will have a blind approach, however a 220 yard or longer tee shot will be rewarded not only with a clear downhill approach to the green but Thiswith the most spectacular of views behind. The green wraps itself around a bunker front right making for a mean Captain's prize pin location. Once again this is a target Thisgreen; land short and the ball will either find the bunker directly or kick right into the bunker off a pronounced ridge protecting the front of the green. Under no Thiscircumstances over shoot the green; the surrounds fall away steeply and recovery from below the green will not be easy.
Cobh Golf Club at Marino Point, a Hawtree Design. Perched on an elevated site with stunning views overlooking the inner regions of Cork Harbour, Our Championship course was officially opened in 2010 by Irish Open Champion & WGC winner, Shane Lowry.
A memorable, Heathland style course, the experience is challenging but fair.
Cobh GC, Marino Point, Cobh, Co. Cork.
021 481 2399
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