‘The Greatest Course That Never Was’ by J. Michael Veron

By: Dr. John Wagner

Devotees of Bobby Jones will love this book. It deals with the premise that he built a course just for his friends and played there whenever he sought solitude. To reveal where the course is located would spoil part of the plot: how the course was built, and why and how Charley Hunter chased down the history.

The story itself is well-written and has some interesting side stories, especially when Hunter finds out that the land the course is on is up for sale to developers. Enter a member of the USGA Executive committee and a member of Augusta National, which seems to be a prerequisite today for being a member of that organization’s Executive Committee.

Veron’s take on what to do with the land is interesting. What they do in the end will please Bobby Jones fans and makes for good, though not great, reading.

‘The Greatest Course That Never Was’ by J. Michael Veron, Broadway Books, $12.95 (soft cover), 380 pages, ISBN 0-7679-0717-5

Dr. John Wagner has been a Seattle dentist for 37 years. He’s been published in several dental journals as well as had several articles appear in the turf magazine for Pacific Northwest golf course superintendents. John has served as a guest lecturer at the University of Washington Business School for several years and as a guest lecturer for several dental societies. Dr. Wagner is the co-designer (with Steve Shea of the Berger Partnership) of a golf course in Japan that cost over $120 million and was built by Wadsworth Golf Construction. He’s a Past President of the Washington State Golf Association and the current President of the Pacific Coast Golf Association. John is currently a Member of the USGA Green Section and a Director of the WSGA.