GOLF’s Top 100 Courses in the World ranking is an exclusive club. With so many entrenched mainstays in the Top 100 — and nearly 40,000 courses in total worldwide — newcomers to the list are uncommon. And yet, come they do! This year, there are seven courses on the list that weren’t on our last World ranking, ranging from actual rookies, like St. Patrick’s Links (in Ireland) and Les Bordes (in France), to old-timers, like Baltusrol Lower and Oak Hill (East), that have been restored to their former glory.
Here’s a quick look at each of the newbies. In the coming days, we’ll be profiling each on GOLF.com in more detail. Stay tuned!
No. 55: St. Patrick’s Links
Tom Doak (2021)
What our raters like: The course looks like it has been there for a century, instead of having opened in 2021, which speaks volumes about the routing and the talented shapers that worked the land.
No. 57: Baltusrol (Lower)
A.W. Tillinghast (1922)
What our raters like: For decades, Baltusrol had what it took to run headache-free major championships. After a 2020 restoration by Gil Hanse and Jim Wagner — which included reinstallation of some of A.W. Tillinghast’s most imaginative bunkering schemes — one of the game’s finest driving tests is fully back.
No. 74: Ardfin
Isle of Jura, Scotland
Bob Harrison (2017)
What our raters like: On the Ardfin Estate, seclusion and quiet are guaranteed — access to the Isle of Jura comes by boat, either from the adjacent Isle of Islay or from mainland Scotland — with the stage set for golfers to enjoy time in the wilds of nature.
No. 76: Oak Hill (East)
Donald Ross (1921), Andrew Green (2020)
What our raters like: The club has embraced the notion that the course’s original designer, Donald Ross, was the maestro and that his work should be brought back to the greatest extent possible.
No. 89: Yeamans Hall
Seth Raynor (1925)
What our raters like: As was Raynor’s want, little earth was disturbed tee to green but he did build up his famous green pads, which means the greenside bunkers are deep. As for the greens, some contend they’re Raynor’s best.
No. 92: Old Town
Perry Maxwell (1939)
What our raters like: Maxwell was in full flight, having perfected the art forms of routing holes, draping them softly upon the land while building green contours that have bewitched generations. Now, Coore & Crenshaw have made Old Town even better.
No. 97: Les Bordes (New)
Gil Hanse/Jim Wagner (2021)
What our raters like: Too many modern designs scream at the player. Not here. The routing makes exquisite use of the land’s six- and eight-foot falls with golfers often not seeing where their tee balls finish.