Breaking out the atlas for 2010 and beyond
CHASKA, Minn. -- OK, so 2009 is history and the venues, while solid, pale in comparison to what's ahead next year. Obviously, Augusta National hosts the Masters and always is on the calendar. But take a look at the treats in June, July and August.
US Open -- Pebble Beach. The fifth time the Open hits 17 Mile Drive. And the fifth opportunity for greatness. Let's see, 1972 -- Jack Nicklaus; 1982 -- Tom Watson; 1992 -- Tom Kite; 2000 -- Tiger Woods. The scenery, the challenges, the weather ... This will be fun.
Open Championship -- St. Andrews. History. Haggis. The Road Hole ... The Scots do it right and there's no better host for the British Open than the birthplace of golf.
PGA Championship -- Whistling Straits. A youngster compared to the others, but Pete Dye's 1998 design on the Wisconsin shoreline of Lake Michigan is a spectacular test of golf with breathtaking vistas. Vijay Singh held off Chris DiMarco and Justin Leonard to win a playoff in the 2004 PGA, which validated the course and its spot in the PGA and Ryder Cup rotation.
While on the subject of future major venues, the PGA Championship hits Atlanta Athletic Club in 2011, the Ocean Course at Kiawah Island in 2012, Rochester's Oak Hill Country Club in 2013, Valhalla in 2014 and back to Whistling Straits in 2015.
Hazeltine National returns to the spotlight in 2016, the second of three consecutive American-hosted Ryder Cups in the U.S. Central Time Zone. The 39th Cup will be in 2012 at Medinah CC in Chicago and the 43rd in 2020 at Whistling Straits. Can you say United States captain Tiger Woods?
-- John Marvel