Architects: Donald Ross (1919), A.W. Tillinghast (1931), Dick Wilson (1957),
            George and Tom Fazio (1979), Arthur Hills (1999)
Year Opened: 1903
Location: Toledo, Ohio
Slope: 144. Rating: 75.9
Par: 71
Yardage: 7,255
Hole-by-Hole: 1 - Par 4 395 Yds    10 - Par 4 363 Yds
                      2 - Par 4 385 Yds    11 - Par 4 378 Yds
                      3 - Par 3 200 Yds    12 - Par 3 172 Yds
                      4 - Par 4 466 Yds    13 - Par 5 516 Yds
                      5 - Par 4 450 Yds    14 - Par 4 480 Yds
                      6 - Par 3 231 Yds    15 - Par 4 468 Yds
                      7 - Par 4 481 Yds    16 - Par 4 409 Yds
                      8 - Par 5 569 Yds    17 - Par 4 470 Yds
                      9 - Par 4 468 Yds    18 - Par 4 354 Yds
                      Par 35  3,645 Yds     Par 36  3,610 Yds

Key Events Held: U.S. Open (1920, 1931, 1957, 1979),
                 U.S. Senior Open (2003),
                 U.S. Amateur (1973),
                 PGA Championship (1986, 1993),
                 NCAA Division I Men's Championship (2009),
                 Inverness Four-Ball Invitational (1935-38, 40-42, 46-53).

Awards Won: Ranked in the top-25 of America's 100 Greatest Golf Courses by
            Golf Digest (since the rankings began). 17th in 2003-04.
            Ranked 51st Best Course in the World by Golf Magazine.

HISTORY:  When one talks about golf lore, Inverness Club and its championships
have to be brought up. Here's a course that has hosted four U.S. Opens and two
PGA  Championships among  other major events. Not to mention that Byron Nelson
was  the club  professional  from 1940-45.  The  USGA has  made  six stops  to
Inverness  Club, including the 1920 U.S. Open won by Edward Ray, which was the
first   Open  for  Bobby  Jones  and  Gene  Sarazen.  During  that  Open,  the
professionals  competing  in the event  were allowed access into the clubhouse
for  the first  time in golf history. Remembering that gesture, players of the
1931  U.S. Open  took up  a  collection and  presented  the Club  with a  huge
cathedral  chime clock on  the final day of the event. The clock is still part
of  the Inverness  history. The 1957 championship, captured by Dick Mayer in a
playoff, was where Jack Nicklaus made his debut. The 79th U.S. Open was dubbed
"The  Best Open Ever" by the USGA, as Hale Irwin hung on despite bogeys on the
final  two holes  for his  second  of three  U.S.  Open titles.  Talk about  a
dramatic  finish, how about the 1986 PGA Championship that saw Bob Tway holing
out  from the front bunker on the final hole to defeat Greg Norman or the 1993
PGA  where  Paul Azinger defeated Norman  on the second playoff hole after the
"Shark" lipped out for birdie on the first extra hole. The Club was originally
founded  in  1903 with nine  holes designed by Bernard  Nichols on 78 acres of
land purchased for $12,000. The site was selected due to its rich, sandy soil,
well-drained  by  a brook (Inverness  Byrne) and  its perfect location along a
streetcar  line. Sixteen  years later, famed architect Donald Ross was brought
in  to transform the nine-hole layout into 18 championship-quality holes. Over
the  years, some of  the finest architect's have come in to tweak and lengthen
the course, such as A.W. Tillinghast, Tom Fazio and club member, Arthur Hills.
The course has been lengthened from 6,229 yards in 1930 to its present yardage
of  7,255. The  clubhouse was twice destroyed  by fire in 1911 and in 1918 and
has since received extensive renovations, including a major overhaul in 1999.

REVIEW:  The course opens with a relatively simple par-four of just 395 yards,
with  a series of bunkers guarding the entire left side of the landing area. A
three-metal is all that is needed off the tee, as the fairway runs out to only
285  yards. A  severe, steep downslope, covered by rough awaits the big hitter
who tries to chew off too much. The green, just 21 yards in depth is framed by
a  pair of bunkers and is well sloped. Another short par-four stands ahead, as
the  second hole,  10 yards shorter than the first, is straightaway with three
bunkers  guarding the landing area 277 yards out. The green is just five yards
larger  than number  one, but it is  very undulating with sand left and right.
Don't  be  disappointed with back-to-back pars,  that's a good score. The par-
three third presents many challenges for the player, since the putting surface
features  three  distinct levels, which allow  for many hole positions. By the
way, a pond guards the entire right side while a bunker awaits on the bail out
side.  After  three somewhat easy holes,  the Inverness Byrne makes its way to
you  by way  of the  fourth hole.  A classic  four-par, this  466-yarder bends
slightly  to the left  and possesses three bunkers along the right side of the
fairway  and  trees left. A ball  landing in the  rough will have a tough time
reaching  this elevated  green and will flirt  with the brook trying to find a
layup  area. Only  one bunker is needed  to guard the green, as the surface is
very  slick. The Byrne  winds its way to the fifth hole, as it cuts across the
front of the tee and runs all along the right side of the fairway to the green
of  this demanding dogleg left. Accuracy is needed off the tee, as the fairway
narrows  at the landing  area. Missing left is no bargain, as trees will block
our  attempt  to reach the green.  At 29 yards, the  fifth green is one of the
largest  on the  course, but  don't  be deceived,  as the  surface features  a
hogback which slopes towards the water. Just when you thought you could take a
break,  the longest par-three on the course awaits at number six. The green is
slightly elevated and is protected right by a pair of bunkers with one left of
the 26-yard deep surface. Take bogey (par if your lucky) and move on. There is
no  question that  the seventh is the "signature hole" at Inverness. This hole
features  beauty  and brawn, as the  player admires from the elevated tee box.
Once  again the creek  crosses where the fairway begins and then winds its way
along  the right  side of  the fairway.  From the  tips, a  240-yard blast  is
required  just to  carry the creek on  the right side, as the fairway bends to
the  right. A series  of 20 or so mounds protect the left side, as players who
miss the fairway will have to negotiate to layup. A long iron or fairway metal
will  be needed just  to reach the elevated surface, which slopes from back to
front. This hole is a perfect example that sand is not needed all the time, as
no  bunkers adorn the hole. One of the most famous holes in golf, the par-five
eighth  is next and  not because of its beauty or length. During the 1979 U.S.
Open,  Lon Hinkle took a shortcut from the tee, as he played down the adjacent
17th  fairway in an attempt to reach the green in two. When Hinkle arrived the
following day, he found that the USGA had planted trees to the left of the tee
box,  thus  forcing the players  to place their  tee shots towards the correct
fairway.  The  dogleg left is the  longest on the course and requires pinpoint
accuracy,  as bunkers guard the corner off the tee with the creek crossing 185
yards  from the green. The putting surface is elevated and protected nicely by
three  difficult bunkers,  as this two-tiered green is no pushover for birdie.
The ninth hole returns to the clubhouse, but provides no rest for the weary at
468  yards from the championship box. This hole was originally built as a par-
five,  but  has been transformed  into a  rugged two-shotter with a devilishly
small (24-yards) green with three large guarding bunkers.

The 10th hole shares the same bunker complex off the tee as the first, with no
less  than eight traps protecting the right side of the fairway. The two holes
are  similar, however the  10th green sits down at the bottom of the hill with
the front of the green protected by the Inverness Byrne. Another tiny green of
just  24 yards  is guarded by three  bunkers, including a little pot bunker on
the  left. Similar to the second, the 11th is a straightaway par four just 378
yards  in length  with a very deep  green. All that is needed is a three-metal
from  the  tee and a short  iron to this narrow,  but long surface. One of the
easiest  greens,  a birdie should  be the order of  the day. The shortest one-
shotter on the course, the 12th is classic Donald Ross, featuring four bunkers
shaped  in a horseshoe around the green. The depth of the surface is 27 yards,
but  has  a myriad  of humps and  bumps, making putting  a difficult chore. It
always seems that the 13th hole on most courses features a risk-reward type of
play.  This par-five  can be reached in  two by the long hitter, however don't
stray  because trouble  lurks close  by. The  player must  negotiate a  narrow
landing  area 250  yards out,  that  slopes to  the  right towards  a pair  of
bunkers.  The  second shot  then must  be placed  over the  creek, either to a
landing  area just 100 yards out or towards the green and carrying to a second
plateau, elevated and just 65 yards away. The surface is miniscule at 23 yards
with a large sand bunker left, as the green slopes from back to front. Birdies
should come in bunches. The course closes with five straight par-fours, all in
varying  length beginning  with the  monster,  480-yard 14th.  The hole  bends
slightly  to the right with a large landing area, however don't be deceived as
trees guard the right side and a huge U-shaped bunker, some 50 yards in length
flanks  the left.  Another small green awaits a long iron, which many consider
to  be  the toughest at  Inverness. Another tester,  the 15th shares that same
bunker  along  its left  side with  trees and  sand on  the right. Missing the
fairway  will require an excellent layup, as once again the brook of Inverness
awaits,  just  100 yards from  the green.  The second smallest putting surface
features  five  bunkers surrounding the  undulating green, which rarely allows
for  a  birdie. Another  straight-forward hole, the  16th features an S-shaped
fairway  as  it winds  to the  green. Trees and  sand flank  both sides of the
fairway and after a successful tee shot, a medium to short iron is left. Don't
be  deceived by the bunker short right of the green, take an extra club as the
hole  is visually  deceptive. The 17th requires length and more length. At 470
yards and doglegging to the left, a bomb down the left side cutting the corner
will  be needed  to have  any chance  of reaching  the green.  As usual,  sand
protects  the inside and the outside of the dogleg. The green complex provides
a  natural gallery  seating, as the surface  sits down in a bowl, protected by
sand  left and trees right and back. The green slopes drastically to the front
and if your not careful, your first putt just might slide off the surface. One
of  the  shorter finishing  holes in  championship play, the  18th is just 354
yards,  but is one  of the finest closers in golf. The hole requires accuracy,
an iron off the tee, to a fairly wide landing area. This will leave the player
with  a short  wedge to  an  elevated and  sloping green.  With the  clubhouse
overlooking, the putting surface is diabolical with many slopes that fall away
to the right and back. Miss right and your in "Death Valley" and bail left and
your gobbled up by deep bunkers which sit well below the green.

As  you drive through Toledo on your way to the course, you start wondering...
where  is it. Not  in a ritzy, glamorous area, Inverness Club is located right
off  the road, with no long driveway flanked by trees or gorgeous landscaping.
When  you pull  in,  your surprised  that  the pool  is in  the  front of  the
clubhouse and that the driving range features a huge net to the right guarding
apartment  buildings. However,  that is where the averageness ends. The course
features  beautifully  contoured, tiny greens  with no putting surface over 30
yards in depth. The holes are sculptured up and down and around sand and trees
with  no less than  nine holes affected by the Inverness Byrne. The chances of
playing  this course are slim and none, as play is restricted to participating
with  a member.  But, if the opportunity  arises, treat yourself, as this is a
gem. If there are drawbacks, then it's the similarity of some of the holes and
the  practice facility. The clubhouse is so memorable with its amazing history
of Opens and PGAs, that you'll spend hours inside admiring the decor. The last
five  champions of  events at  Inverness  reads like  a who's  who with  Craig
Stadler,  Hale Irwin,  Bob Tway, Paul Azinger and most recently Bruce Lietzke.
The  inscription on  the clock reads: "God  measures men by that they are. Not
what  they  in wealth possess. This  vibrant message chimes afar. The voice of
Inverness."  This  course represents the  finest in American golf, designed by
one  of the most revered architects with beautifully sculptured and undulating
greens and immaculate conditioning. A must if given the chance.