COURSE ARCHITECTS

Play the Courses of Golf’s Legends

McConnell Golf invites you to experience the region’s only membership to encompass 11 private country clubs that are home to golf courses designed by international legends such as Donald Ross, Tom Fazio, Pete Dye, Arnold Palmer, Hale Irwin, Greg Norman, and Ellis Maples.

Donald James Ross

( November 23, 1872 – April 26, 1948 ) was an influential golf course designer. He was born in Dornoch, Scotland, but became a citizen of and spent most of his adult life in the United States. He was involved in designing or redesigning around 400 courses from 1900–1948 ( including Sedgefield Country Club, Raleigh Country Club, Holston Hills Country Club, and Country Club of Asheville ), laying the foundation for America's golf industry. Ross is unmatched in the quality of courses he completed and on the list of well - known golf architects of the early 20th century. Ross died while completing his final design, Raleigh Country Club in North Carolina.

Tom Fazio

has designed more than 120 courses ( including Treyburn Country Club and Old North State Club ) and has more courses ranked among the top 100 in the U.S. than anyone else in the business. His individual honors include Best Modern Day Golf Course Architect, which he received from Golf Digest Magazine three times. In 1995, Fazio became only the second course architect to receive the highest recognition awarded by the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America - The Old Tom Morris Award.

Pete Dye

designs are recognized as some of golf's finest championship courses, especially his course at Sedgefield Country Club ( formally known as Cardinal Golf and Country Club ) that opened in 1975. The 2007 restoration of the course, completed by Mr. Dye himself, provides a longer challenge, yet retains the unique and demanding qualities. It covers over 140 acres of scenic property and includes two lakes and winding creeks. After completing the restoration of the course, Mr. Dye stated that #12 is "the hardest par 3 I ever designed." Pete Dye received the 2003 Old Tom Morris Award from the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America, their highest honor. In 2005, he became the sixth recipient of the PGA Tour Lifetime Achievement Award. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2008 in the Lifetime Achievement category. The American Society of Golf Course Architects bestowed the Donald Ross Award on Dye in 1995 which was soon after Dye was named Architect of the Year by Golf World magazine.

Arnold Palmer

( September 10, 1929 - September 25, 2016 ) Generally regarded as one of the greatest players in the history of golf, Palmer won numerous events on both the PGA Tour and Champions Tour, dating back to 1955. In 1988, Arnold created Musgrove Mill Golf Club which has been consistently ranked in Golf Week's Top 100 Modern Courses in America. He said of the course, "The formation of the Musgrove Mill Golf Club was based on a love of the game of golf and the member's desire for selective privacy."

Hale Irwin

has amassed 20 PGA TOUR, 45 Champions Tour and 8 international victories. A three - time winner of the prestigious U.S. Open and a two - time winner of the Senior U.S. Open, Irwin was a member of the victorious Ryder Cup team in 1971. His golf designs focuses on creating high - quality, playable golf courses that are classic in nature and maximize the existing terrain to influence strategy: An approach exemplified at TPC at Wakefield Plantation.

Greg Norman

spent 331 weeks as the #1 Golfer in the World during the 80's and 90's and has won 85 international tournaments in his career. He is nicknamed The Great White Shark or sometimes simply The Shark – a reference to Norman's blond hair, size, aggressive golf style and in reflection to the native coastal animal of his birthplace ( Australia ). In 1998, Norman completed The Reserve Golf Club which has been ranked in the top 5 of best courses on the Grand Strand."My ultimate goal at The Reserve wasn't to create an extremely difficult course, just one that's very challenging. So, while you wont have to hit straight every hole, you're always going to have to think straight." -Greg Norman

Ellis Maples

a protégé of the great Donald Ross, is a key part of one of golf’s most enduring families. His father, Frank Maples, was the golf course superintendent at Pinehurst Country Club from 1907 until his death in 1949. In 1948 after the death of Donald Ross, Ellis came to Raleigh County Club to finish Ross’ last design as construction foreman, opened the course in 1949 and became RCC’s first superintendent and golf pro. His design characteristics directly represent key ingredients of Ross’ methodology and smart design approach, resulting in golf courses that take advantage of the natural lay of the land highlighted by his bunker work, his most distinctive design characteristic. Brook Valley CC in Greenville North Carolina is an unmistakable Maples layout that opened at the height of his design career in 1966 with Sam Snead, Ben Hogan and Mike Souchak playing the opening match. Immediately thereafter Maples was commissioned to design the #2 ranked course in North Carolina, Grandfather Mountain ( 1967 ). Other notable Maples courses designed during this decade are Dogwood at CCNC ( 1963 ), Pinehurst #5 ( 1961 ) and South at Carmel CC ( 1962 ).