New Course Ratings Released for Chambers Bay

The Washington State Golf Association (WSGA) has updated its course and slope ratings for Chambers Bay, the golf course in University Place, Wash. that will host the 2010 U.S. Amateur and 2015 U.S. Open.

The revised ratings were needed after the addition of new tees on hole Nos. 1, 3, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11, 15 and 17; the option of playing the first hole from the new championship tee on the 10th; the option of utilizing two different greens on the fifth hole; and the renovation of the fourth green.

The championship tees at Chambers Bay will play to two combinations of yardages and ratings. The first combination measures at 7,591 yards with a USGA Course Rating of 76.0 and a Slope of 135. The second combination at 7,688 yards has a rating/Slope of 76.6/137. Although par is listed at 72, the USGA has indicated it will most likely alter the par on a few of the holes during the two championships, specifically on holes 1, 13 and 18.

"The USGA is extremely excited to have Chambers Bay as a venue of the upcoming U.S. Amateur and U.S. Open championships," said Larry Gilhuly, the USGA Director of the Northwest Green Section. "They've never held a championship on a golf course that has this many choices in how to set up the holes."

The ratings team was led by John Saegner, Jr., the Senior Director of Membership Services for the WSGA, one of the few people in the nation with the "Master Course Rater" title from the USGA. Assisting with the measurements in allowing Saegner to properly rate the course was David Wienecke, the superintendent at Chambers Bay.

A USGA Course Rating is the evaluation of the playing difficulty of a course for a scratch golfer under normal course and weather conditions for the purpose of providing a uniform basis on which to issue USGA Handicap Indexes. A USGA Slope measures the relative playing difficulty of each set of tees for non-scratch golfers compared to the USGA Course Rating (e.g. compared to the difficulty of a course for scratch golfers).

These ratings are objective evaluations of a course's difficulty based on a number of factors including roll, elevation, forced lay-ups, prevailing winds, altitude, topography, fairway width, green targets, recoverability and rough, bunkers, hazards, trees, and effective playing length.

"Which set of tees are used for the 2010 U.S. Amateur will most likely be a 'day of' decision by the USGA," said Saegner. "They'll take into consideration the weather, particularly the wind, when they set up the course each day of the championship."

Designed by Robert Trent Jones II, Chambers Bay is owned by Pierce County, managed by KemperSports, and is open to the public. For more details, visit or