Golf: Ryder Cup practice days – day one, number one

No 51 Hertfordshire was chosen as the venue for the debut in this Ryder Cup cycle. Yes, it doesn’t have the history of Hazeltine but it did host The Open in 2006 and the Ryder Cup in 2007 and is a fine facility. There are 19 holes, everything accessible and the soft greens are easy to negotiate.

One area that has some catching up to do is the condition of the greens. In 2007 there were 1,275 bunkers at Europe’s two sites (Wedge and Claflin), just 25 short of the current Ryder Cup record. While there are much more efficient ways of scoring than on the golf course in this competition, it is still a green beast which, ultimately, will make or break your Ryder Cup.

It’s a big ground for Jimenez and Lipton: ‘Where’s Europe’s Seve?’, 19 October

The event will probably be remembered for Tiger Woods smashing his car window and later running into the Ryder Cup. A copy of the scene from Ghost would probably have been adequate for picturing the two days of mayhem.

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