123rd U.S. Open: 5 Things to Know About LACC
The U.S. Open Championship returns to Los Angeles for the first time in 75 years with the playing of the 123rd edition at The Los Angeles Country Club’s North Course from June 15-18. The championship was last played in Greater Los Angeles when Ben Hogan won the first of his four U.S. Opens in 1948 at The Riviera Country Club.
In 1927, legendary golf course architect and LACC member George C. Thomas Jr. redesigned the North Course, later called his greatest design. In 2010, a five-year restoration project was completed by noted architect Gil Hanse. Archived photos, written documents and physical unearthing of landforms provided the framework for a finished product that reflects the past.
►The North Course will be slightly wider off the tee than most U.S. Open courses, keeping with the Thomas design tenet that angles matter. The first tee for the championship will be located on the practice putting green adjacent to the clubhouse, as was done for the 2017 Walker Cup Match. It will be a great setting in the shadow of the historic clubhouse, looking out to the first fairway with The Beverly Hilton in the background.
►One of the best vantage points on the course to view championship golf may be the area of the second green. The third tee, eighth green, ninth tee, 16th green and 17th tee are all within close proximity. The barranca also works its way through several of these holes and may play a meaningful role in determining the outcome of the championship.
►The sixth hole, a 325-yard par 4, is strategic with its risk-reward nature. A blind tee shot awaits, whether attempting to drive the green or to lay up to a comfortable yardage to attack the smallest putting surface on the course (3,424 square feet). Bermuda rough, which is being employed at a U.S. Open for the first time since 2005, will be tightened here and in other places around the course to strike a balance between the architecture and a championship test.
►LACC’s signature hole is No. 11, one of five distinctive par 3s on the course. It will play at 290 yards. Although downhill, the design brilliantly allows for the ball to be played short of the green, where it will bounce toward the putting surface. From the tee, the course’s shortest hole, the par-3 15th, is in complete view.
►A great finish awaits the 2023 championship. The 17th features alternate tees to a drive zone where the barranca has become more visible. The U.S. Open requires players to drive the ball in the fairway to have success and No. 18 stresses that attribute. The approach shot will be contemplated with the clubhouse in the background and thousands of fans in attendance.