The Masters: Hole by Hole Part III
This is the final installment of our celebration of Masters week with an intimate look at the course at Augusta National, celebrating its history and tradition.
No. 13 – Azalea – Par 5, 510 Yards. The final leg of Amen Corner contains the second bridge in play, nelson Bridge, stonework that connects the tee box to the fairway and named for Byron Nelson following his performance at the 1937 edition – he made up six strokes over two holes on 12 and 13 with a birdie and an eagle to race past Ralph Guldahl and win the tournament with a 5-under 283, earning a cool $1,500 for his troubles. The water plays a role twice, the second and scariest time right before the green. Hit it too short and you’re going for a swim; too far and you’re in one of three back bunkers.
No. 14 – Chinese Fir – Par 4, 440 Yards. No bunkers? Rejoice! At least until you start noticing all the subtle elevation changes on the green. Misread a lie here and you’ll end up renting a room on the grass. How tough is it? Nick Price once logged an eight here in 1993.
No. 15 – Firethorn – Par 5, 530 Yards. Water, water everywhere. A pond is in front of the green, and a second pond, part of No. 16’s layout, is right behind it. Even worse, the front of the green is steep enough that if your ball lands there, it’s probably going to roll backwards into the water. In 2013, Tiger Woods’ approach shot hit the flagstick and bounded into the pond, from where his incorrect drop – and the ensuing penalty – cost him a potential title. Sarazen Bridge- named for Gene Sarazen on the occasion of his double eagle here in 1935 – is both a mark of beauty and a potential hazard.
No. 16 – Redbud – Par 3, 170 Yards. The biggest body of water to date looms large in front of the green, which is surrounded on three sides by bunkers. On Saturday, the hole is flushed right, near the top bunker, making it a real pain in the clubs.
No. 17 – Nandina, Par 4, 440 Yards. This will be the second year without the mighty Eisenhower Tree, but that doesn’t negate the grandeur of the penultimate hole. The hole’s difficulty actually went up a small amount (4.24 in 2014 compared to 4.22 in 2013) after the tree was removed.
No. 18 – Holly, par 4, 465 Yards. You thought perhaps it would be easy? Up, then down, then back up, the finally two sand traps around the green which has multiple tiers to just mess with your confidence that much more.