Following the modernisation and refinements under guidance of Ernie Els in 2006, Wentworth now has the opportunity to reconstruct and modernise all the greens on the West Course to a USGA specification replacing the current poa greens with colonial bent grass and Wentworth is to reconstruct all greens and approaches on West Course after 2009 BMW PGA Championship
This is the next stage of the journey that started in 2006 so as to ensure the classic West Course remains an exceptional challenge to both today’s amateur and professional golfer.
In making this announcement Richard Caring, chairman of Wentworth Club, said, “As soon as we had the opportunity we immediately went into consultation with our partners in the European Tour and experts in the industry to commence the project. By May 2010 we will have, in my opinion, the best greens in Great Britain.
“Professional golf tournaments have played a huge part in the history of Wentworth and with these changes we know we will be able to present a fitting test in the future whilst providing our members year-round access to one of the finest inland golf courses in the world.”
George O‘Grady, chief executive, The European Tour, said, “The BMW PGA Championship is deservedly recognised as the Players’ Flagship event on The European Tour International Schedule. We are proud that Wentworth Club and the classic West Course have been its home for each of the last 25 years.
“The project to seriously upgrade the greens reflects the commitment of Richard Caring to further build on the inspirational course changes suggested by Ernie Els and already implemented by Julian Small, Chris Kennedy and all the team at Wentworth Club. Now we look forward to The European Tour’s long and close partnership with Wentworth Club further developing the BMW PGA Championship and all our players being proud to compete in this prestigious event.”
Chris Kennedy, courses manager, Wentworth Club, said, “This is something we’ve wanted to do for some time and I’m very pleased that the opportunity has now arisen. We recognise that the Harry Colt greens constructed in 1926 do not perform as well as new USGA specification greens.
“Now that we have the chance to address the issue the objective is to produce a consistent surface of the highest quality on every green on the West Course. When embarking on this project we have worked together with top agronomists from the Sports Turf Research Institute and the European Tour. We chose colonial bent grass for the greens, not just for tournament play but for general play all year round.
“Working closely with Ernie Els we will also review each green so as to ensure that they become a fitting test for the modern day golfer whilst staying true to Harry Colt’s original vision. Whilst the course is closed we will also be carrying out further work on the fairways, tees, bunkers on the West so as to ensure we have taken every opportunity to improve all possible aspects.”
The work will start after the BMW PGA Championship in May 2009. The course will re-open solely for member and guest play in the latter part of 2009 and the Club is confident that the West Course greens will be in excellent condition for the 2010 BMW PGA Championship.
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