GCSAA Class A Golf Course Superintendent Jeff Plotts has redone the fairways and added drainage, but has otherwise not made any visible changes to the Stadium Course.
Located in a basin surrounded by mountains, the golf course dealt with poor water quality due to lack of drainage and high evapotranspiration rates, leaving a high salt accumulation. By adding elaborate drainage systems that pump water off property, Plotts has been able to manage the salinity levels and improve the quality of turf. Hes using less water now too, which has helped TPC Scottsdale maintain a cooperative sanctuary certification from Audubon International.
A 15-year GCSAA member, Plotts works with a seasoned crew at TPC Scottsdale that includes five people who have been there for 20-plus years. They completed a rebuilding project on TPC Scottsdales Champions Course (formerly known as the Desert Course) last month that entailed a complete demolition of the previous layout. The largest setup of the PGA Tour in terms of skyboxes and grandstands, Plotts and staff begin preparations for the FBR Open in November each year.
TPC Scottsdale is operated by a unique conglomeration of interests, as the facility is federal government property, the city of Scottsdales asset and is managed by the PGA TOUR.
Plotts explains that the key to success on the Stadium Course is finishing well on the last five holes. No. 14 is strong par 4 and No. 15 is a 552-yard par 5 with an island green, which is a good birdie opportunity. No. 16 is the famed fan-fest with a crowd of 40,000-plus. No. 17 is a 332-yard drivable par 4 that is the only par 4 on the Tour that has ever been aced (Andrew Magee in 2001) and No. 18 is good par 4 finishing hole.
|Primary Grasses||Height of Cut|
|Tees||bermudagrass; perennial ryegrass; fine fescue||0.325'|
|Fairways||bermudagrass; perennial reygrass; fine fescue||0.425'|
|Greens||bermudagrass; perennial ryegrass; Poa trivialis; Velvet bentgrass||0.125'|
|Rough||bermudagrass; perennial ryegrass; fine fescue||4'|