A world-class test awaits a world-class field at the Ballantine’s Championship as Blackstone Golf Club near Seoul, South Korea, prepares for the second edition of the event, from April 26-29.
The course, which opened in 2010 and hosted the Ballantine’s Championship for the first time last season, will provide another stern examination of the players’ credentials with its length and demand on accuracy.
Englishman Lee Westwood, who holds the first round lead of the 2012 Masters Tournament, was Blackstone’s conqueror 12 months ago, when his 12 under par total of 276 gave him a one shot victory over Spaniard Miguel Angel Jiménez, and this year’s champion will need to display the same level of skill, power and accuracy.
There are new tees on the 17th – making the hole 40 yards longer – and the fourth, which is arguably the most spectacular of the entire course with its panoramic views and dramatic drop from the tee down to the fairway.
Tournament Director David Williams said: “On the fourth hole we now have the option of moving the tee forward and making it driveable. It’s a stunning hole and makes for very exciting golf.
“The whole course will provide a tough challenge for the field. It’s long, but it’s not all about power and long hitting; it’s a thinking player’s course. It’s also very scenic with fantastic views, creeks, lakes and forest glens.
“There are a couple of excellent par threes which are long and over water – the seventh and the 12th holes. It’s a young course as it only opened a couple of years ago, and every year it will mature and get even better.
“It’s hilly so it will be physically demanding as well, and the greens are undulating and offer some testing pin positions.
“Then you have the club itself, which is stunning. It is very exclusive and will provide the perfect backdrop to what I am sure will be a tremendous week of golf.”