Laurel View Country Club in Hamden, Ct is a classic Geoffrey Cornish track, the overall conditions of which have been enhanced mightily in recent years. The course continues to be a stern test of playing ability.
Work by MDM Golf over the years has included sinking funds into maintenance, updating the course’s irrigation system, an ambitious seeding and aerification program, and work to tee boxes and greens. Yardage has been added to some of the holes. The conditions of the tee boxes, fairways and greens have improved significantly.
Changes were also made to the 11th fairway, which was criticized for its severe slope that runs from left to right. Some tee shots landing on the center to right side of the fairway rolled down a bank, leaving players trying to hack their way back onto the fairway from a stand of trees below the landing area.
In the past, Laurel View, which may be one of the late Mr. Cornish’s best designs because of its variety and the use of the natural topography to create risk reward shots.
The course can be stretched beyond 7,000 yards and features some of the toughest par-fours in the state, like the 479-yard fifth. There’s a pond guarding the right side of the green, which often must be attacked with a long iron or fairway wood. Number nine is 450 yards from the back markers, and climbs up a hill to the putting surface, making the hole play 20 to 30 yards longer than its listed yardage.
The seventh hole is a monstrous par-three, measuring around 250 yards from the tips, leaving even the best players with a fairway wood in their hands on the tee box.
The par-fives are on the short side but they are not easy. The 490-yard 14th plays and is in reality even shorter because it’s downhill off the tee. However, there is a pond in front of the green that must be carried and bunkers guarding the putting surface if you go for it in two. The layout has hosted a number of tournaments and qualifying events for major competitions, a good indication of the value accomplished players put on the routing.
Laurel View Country Club