MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – We’re still more than a year away from the Ryder Cup being held at Hazeltine, but for Team USA, the preparation has already begun.
That’s because team captain Davis Love III is determined to end the United States’ three-tournament losing streak. Love is playing the course this week, looking for every advantage.
Love arrived at Hazeltine on Sunday morning for what will be a three-day fact-finding mission.
“For me, it’s getting to know the golf course,” Love said, “so that when a player or an assistant captain asks a question, I have an answer for them this time.”
But it’s not just to familiarize, it’s also to strategize. Not only how to play the course, but how to set it up.
“We’ve tried all different theories,” Love said. “That we need to make it like a U.S. Open or a PGA Championship, that we need to make it a birdie fest. We’ve tried every system. We haven’t found anything that consistently works.”
One thing is certain: There will be changes made to the course. Like, for example, back in 2012, at Medina, just outside of Chicago, when Davis had them mow all of the rough down. They’ll also likely change the order of the holes.
All of it with one purpose in mind – to benefit the United States.
“We put a lot of thought into Medina, and it worked for two days, and then it didn’t work on Sunday,” Love said. “We obviously cannot control the outcome with the golf course, but we know this golf course. We’ve played major championships here. We know how it’s set up. … We should try to set it up more like a U.S. major championship, because we do well in those.
“We spent a lot of time at Medina. We’re going to spend a lot more time here. We’re going to be prepared. I think our team needs to come in here feeling like it’s a home golf course for them.”