Ladybank GC started out as a 6 hole course in 1879.
It was designed by Old Tom Morris.
It was extended to 9 holes in 1910, and then to 18 holes in 1962 with the expansion overseen by Laurie Auchterlonie Jr.
A major renovation of the course bunkering was undertaken in 2019.
Ladybank is an inland treelined course a short distance from St Andrews.
In season I can see it would be quite picturesque.
I understand it is a popular alternative to the many links courses in Fife when the weather comes in.
It occupies a relatively flat tract of land, and is an easy walking course.
The mature tracts of Scots Pine and Silver Birch offer protection from wind & rain.
But the trade off is that the fairways are tighter- framed by trees, and scattered patches of heather.
In places it has the look of the famous heathland courses, but a good number of holes don’t have the ground cover and are very much parkland in appearance.
Ladybank is a course that demands accuracy first and foremost, especially off the tee.
The bunkering was recently upgraded, and complements the trees and heather in offering a significant defence to par.
Land your tee shot on the short grass or pay the penalty!
Unfortunately we played as a two on a windy day where the field ahead was struggling to keep their balls in play.
So it was a very slow round.
No doubt that influenced my assessment of the course somewhat.
Although it was all very pleasant, I thought there was a certain sameness to the holes.
Notable holes include:
- hole 1 Ridge), a gentle dogleg opening par 4 which sets the scene. The tee shot must be left to give vision to the approach.
- hole 4 (Birch), a pretty, teasing par 3 with two bunkers squeezing the front of a green which opens up at the back.
- hole 8 (Strick it Fir), a pretty mid- length par 3 with the green angled left to right (see pic top of page)
- hole 10 (Cherry), another par 3 with bunkers protecting the front of the green.
- hole 18 (Quarry), a strong par 4 closing hole with some rugged terrain to carry off the tee.
Ladybank is a pretty inland alternative to the grand old links around St Andrews and The Kingdom of Fife.
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