For the US Open, the Country Club will take on a fresh look.
The Open returns to Brookline on June 16-19 for the fourth time, but there will be significant changes from when Curtis Strange triumphed in 1988 at the 140-year-old club west of Boston.
The USGA announced that the course will be 250 yards longer at 7,264 yards, with a par of 70. In 1988, and when Julius Boros won in 1963, it was a par 71. When the U.S. Open was first held at the Country Club, it was a par 73 course that was won by local amateur Francis Ouimet in 1913.
The course utilized for big tournaments, such as the 1999 Ryder Cup, is a hybrid of the members’ course plus a third nine.
The 11th hole from the regular course, a par 3 of 131 yards, will be added to the championship course this year, while No. 4 will be removed. The 10th hole has been reduced in length from 515 yards to 499 yards. The 14th hole, which was once 450 yards, is now a par 5 with a distance of 619 yards.
“The Country Club is a classic golf course with small greens and tight fairways,” noted Jeff Hall, managing director of rules and open championships for the USGA. “How will this modern golfer adapt, or will they just let it all hang out?”
Another change: the previous three Brookline Opens were decided by an 18-hole playoff. The USGA has implemented a two-hole aggregate playoff system. This was implemented in 2018. Tiger Woods beat Rocco Mediate in a 19-hole playoff at Torrey Pines in 2008 to win the US Open. It’s the major with the longest gap between playoff appearances.