Is there an appetite for quality par-3 golf courses in the world?
If the early returns from The Cradle are any indication, the answer is most definitely yes.
This 789-yard short course, designed by Gil Hanse, opened at Pinehurst Resort in late September 2017, a complement to the resort’s nine championship courses. Golfers were clearly eager to try out the new track.
Consider the numbers from The Cradle’s first two months alone, as reported on the resort’s website:
- More than 6,100 rounds played
- On its busiest day, it was played by 174 golfers
- The average time to complete nine holes was just over an hour
In a true feat of speed golf, Pinehurst teaching professional Kelly Mitchum completed 26 rounds in one day – on the shortest day of the year in December. That’s 234 holes of golf, and he shot 12-under par that day.
Moreover, since its opening, The Cradle has surrendered more than 30 holes-in-one to players from ages 8 to 84.
The hole distances at The Cradle range from 40 yards to 127 yards, which offers distinct benefits: Players of all ages and skill levels may enjoy a round; players may carry lighter golf bags with fewer clubs; and golfers in a hurry may find a one-hour round fits their schedule perfectly.
The Cradle proves the demand exists for short courses. Let’s hope more facilities respond to the call.