Black Diamond Ranch approaches completion of bunker rebuild

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    David Whelchel has upgraded the bunker at the thirteenth hole to make it more playable

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    The Quarry course’s sand hazards, such as those found at the fifteenth hole, have all been renovated

Richard Humphreys
By Richard Humphreys

David Whelchel, ASGCA, is approaching completion of a bunker rebuild on the Quarry course at Black Diamond Ranch in Lecanto, Florida.

The private, gated community has 45 holes of golf designed by Tom Fazio — the 18-hole Quarry and Ranch courses, and a nine-hole Highlands layout.

The project on the Quarry course began in August and is expected to be completed later this month. Florida-based contractor Bobby Holmes of Golf Sculptors International, is completing the work, which includes a lining system from Bunker Solutions, new drainage and new G-angle white sand.

“There are almost four acres of sand on the course and after 32 years, they were starting to need a facelift,” said Whelchel. “Many of the bunkers have been changed over the years, and some have even been taken out. We are trying to put some of those back and make others more playable and maintainable as they had gotten very steep, and some even unplayable, as a result of the normal aging of a golf course, drainage problems and even maintenance practices.

“We are also grading areas around the bunkers to minimise drainage over the faces and so that superintendent Graham Kornmeyer can mow more of the slopes by machine instead of fly or hand mowing, which will save the club money.”