Golden Ocala's replica holes have new meaning for Webb

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OCALA, Fla. – When Karrie Webb won her first tournament as a pro at Golden Ocala 20 years ago, she was intrigued by the eight replica holes, or as they call them here, the “tribute holes.”

A first-year pro playing the Futures Tour’s Golden Flake Classic, Webb had never actually played any of the real holes replicated here. She had never played Augusta National’s 12th, 13th or 16th holes. Or St. Andrews’ first hole and 17th hole (the Road Hole). Or Royal Troon’s eighth (the Postage Stamp Hole). Or Muirfield’s ninth and Baltusrol’s fourth.

Webb makes her return to Golden Ocala this week as part of a star-studded cast playing the new Coates Golf Championship, the LPGA’s season opener. With the Super Bowl on Sunday, the 72-hole event is scheduled to begin Wednesday and end Saturday. A field of 120 players will complete for a $1.5 million purse.

“It’s pretty cool now to think the only course I haven’t played is Royal Troon,” Webb said of the replica holes. “It’s good to come back, and now having played those courses to play the replica holes again and see how close they are to the real deal.”