Barnsley Gardens597 Barnsley Gardens Rd., Adairsville
STAFF: Scott Mahr is the General Manager; Roger Mack is the PGA Director of Golf.
PAR/YARDAGE: Barnsley Gardens plays to a par of 72 with four sets of tees: Black (7,189 yards); Blue (6,679); Green (6,236) and Burgundy (5,428).
COURSE RATING/SLOPE: 74.8/142 (Black); 72.7/136 (Blue); 70.3/131 (Green); 72.6/129 (Burgundy).
ABOUT THE COURSE: Barnsley Gardens will again host Your Community PhoneBook Georgia Open in August after a successful debut as the tournament site last year. The course is an excellent test for the state’s top players, and a strong but not overly demanding challenge for its resort guests and daily fee visitors. While Bryant Odom’s 14-under total was the winning score last year, only a handful of other players were better than 4-under for 72 holes, with the course providing a healthy workout for the tournament participants from tee to green. Jim Fazio’s outstanding layout is reasonably generous off the tee, with the right to left nature of many of the holes a definite advantage for those who play a draw. The par 4s include a nice mix between long and short, inviting and demanding, with three of the more vulnerable two-shotters encountered early in the round. From that point, however, there aren’t any soft touches, most notably the difficult finishing hole, with most of the scoring opportunities found on the par 5s. Longer hitters can take a crack at reaching all of them in two, but there are some risks included. Three of the par 5s come in a four-hole stretch during the middle of the round (9, 10 and 12) allowing those who can handle the relatively vulnerable three-shotters to get on a run.
Barnsley Gardens is best known for its exceptional collection of par 3s, which average more than 215 yards from the back tees and over 190 from the blues. The 14th is one of the state’s most spectacular downhill, over-water “short” holes, measuring 240 yards from the back tees and 217 from the blues. The 17th is shorter and not quite as daunting but is not much easier, and is part of a mostly demanding group of holes from 13 in. Jim Fazio’s greens are not as massive as those of many of his brother’s designs, with a number on the narrow side, making things tough on chips and pitches from the sides. The quality of the putting surfaces, however, is absolutely first rate, affording the chance to hole some putts if you correctly deduce the speed and break.