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Sal Johnson and Dave Seanor talk U.S. Open prep at Golf Observer

While I’m getting my own preview piece done, Sal Johnson has a nice write-up of the changes discussed at media day.  Scroll down to question 6.  Kudos to Mike davis for – as he put it – easing up on the accelerator.

From the article:

“Several tees have been added, which will enable Davis & Co. to vary the lengths of certain holes, either to add variety over four rounds or adjust to weather conditions. No. 8, for instance,  will play between 135 yards and 230 yards, with a more difficult pin position when the hole is shortened, and a more accessible hole location when the tee is back.

The USGA will continue to feature graduated rough for the Open, a concept that Davis introduced at Winged Foot in 2006. (The rough was high and lush throughout Bethpage in ’02.) The big new innovation this year is the effort to provide players with a more consistent course for the entire week, including practice rounds.  As Davis explained, Open courses typically got tougher between the first practice round on Monday and the final round of competition on Sunday, as the green keeping staff aimed for the firmest, fastest conditions possible over the weekend. At Bethpage, the rough will be maintained the same way all seven days, as will the putting surfaces, fairways and green surrounds – as opposed to allowing the rough to grow and the greens to become firmer.”