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The first PGATour major tournament of the season,

the Masters, will tee off on Thursday, April 7 and

annually signals a start to the golf season in the

northern portion of the United States. The beauty

of the flowers against a background of the perfectly

manicured green grass at Bobby Jones’ dream

course never fails to impress and amaze golf fans.

Augusta National, the home of the Masters

Tournament, was designed by famed golf

architect Dr. Alister McKenzie in conjunction

with Grand Slam winner, Bobby Jones. The

course was co-founded by Jones and Clifford

Roberts with construction being completed in

1933. The first tournament, the Augusta National

Invitational, was won by Horton Smith in 1934.

For the first five years the tournament was known

as the Augusta National Invitational, because

Jones felt the Masters sounded to pretentious.

The tournament grew to be a major out of respect

for Jones and Augusta National’s habit of always

identifying the best players of the day.

The course was built on the site of a former

nursery and remnants of the exotic plants remain

today. Each hole is named after a flower that is

prevalent on the course, Azalea, Holly, Carolina

Cherry and Magnolia are just a few examples.

In 1940 the course only measured 6,800

yards, but to keep up with modern technology,

as well as, bigger and stronger athletes, it

has been stretched to over 7,400 yards. The

course is forgiving from the tee with many

open driving holes. The difficulty arises when

players assess their second shots. Approach

shots must find favorable locations on the

greens or face dire consequences.

Severe undulation and slick greens can leave

impossible putts or chips. Winds that swirl

through the majestic pines affect ball flight

and makes club choice even more difficult.

History tells us the tournament doesn’t begin

until the ‘Back 9’ on Sunday afternoon. Holes

11-13 comprise “Amen Corner,” so aptly

named by Herbert Warren Wind in a 1958

The Masters Tees

Off April 7



Fred Altvater

NWO Golf Links