When the normally perspicacious Invitational Shootout competition committee played the first official practice round of 2014 at Water’s Edge Golf Club in Worth on Friday, May 30, they saw a lot more than they expected. In fact, the committee unanimously agreed that the host course to this year’s Invitational Shootout was in spectacular shape.
“I was blown away by the condition of the course” said committee member Joe Hill. “The greens are fast and firm, the fairways are terrific and the bunkers are perfect. The only thing golfers at this year’s Shootout won’t like will be the high and thick rough. If you’re not in the fairway, you’re in trouble.”
The overwhelming majority of the golf courses in Chicago and the suburbs were hit hard by the record-setting cold this winter, which caused many facilities to lose entire greens. After an extended freeze of nearly six months, the poa annua, or annual meadow grass, which is native to this area, started to loose oxygen and never recovered on many courses.
Bill Casper Golf, which manages Water’s Edge Golf Club, worked tirelessly this spring to make sure the greens would be ready for first Saturday in June and The Shootout. “We had our entire team using June 7th as a target date to make sure these greens would be around a 12 or 13 on the Stimpmeter for The Shootout” said head groundskeeper Jeff Davis. “Thankfully we’ve got a strong root system that came alive in mid-May and has been growing really well. The course will be ready for battle on Shootout Saturday, I hope the golfers will be as well.”