Tobacco Road took every idea that Strantz had been developing to that point in time (1999) and put it all in one place, specifically an old mining site of sand and pine 25 miles north of Pinehurst. The property is the secret star—yes, there are Strantzian trademarks like boomerang-shaped par 5s, greens and fairways notched blindly behind dunes, dramatic risk/reward shots played over deep chasms and putting surfaces stretched into stringy silly putty shapes. But without the elevation changes, depressions and contrasting textures of the rugged sand barrens, this would be True Blue 2.0. It’s much more than that: a master class in decision-making and composition that sits just inside the top 50 on the Golf Digest America’s 100 Greatest Public Courses ranking, a placement that’s at least 20 spots too low, at least in the mind of this editor.
100 Greatest Public: Ranked since 2009. Highest Ranking: 49th, 2021-2022. Current Ranking: 49th.
Best in State: Ranked Top 15 in North Carolina since 2019; Top 20 from 2017-2018; Top 25 from 2011-2016. Current Ranking: 13th since 2019.