Manuel Piñero believes that the La Quinta Golf and Country Club course which he designed, and is competing on at the Benahavis Senior Masters this week, is in the best condition it has been since the redesign of the course prior to last year’s event.
The Spaniard, who had a 100 per cent record in The Ryder Cup singles in his two appearances in 1981 and 1985, oversaw changes that including a new par three 11th hole and now that those changes have been given some time, Piñero thinks the course is in even better nick this week.
“I think it’s in better condition this year than last year, the fairways and the greens. This course is not an easy course," said the 59 year old.
“You have to be in control of your game all the time and keep concentration at any stage because if you miss a couple of shots, you’re gone. It’s a course that, from the first tee to the last hole, is very demanding.”
The Spaniard certainly found it demanding himself on the opening day at the Benahavis Senior Masters after he had started steadily with a level par front nine before a birdie left him one under but two double bogeys in the final three holes meant he had to be content with a three over par round of 73.
La Quinta Golf and Country Club opened in 1989 with an 18 hole course designed by golf course architect Pinero, and has since been extended into a 27-hole complex with the replacement of several original holes and the addition of an extra nine.
This is the third consecutive year that La Quinta has hosted the Benahavis Senior Masters, with Carl Mason winning in 2009 and Boonchu Ruangkit emerging victorious last year.