Golf Course Architecture - Issue 75, January 2024

57 have anticipated. This, then, for him, is something of a breakthrough project: even in a country so blessed by the golfing gods as Ireland, the opportunity to work on genuine links terrain does not come around very often. “In my younger years I fished, surfed and golfed all along the west coast of Ireland, often camping in duneland. So I was no stranger to dune systems and was comfortable to mimic what I grew up in,” says Lynch. “I previously worked on links at Ceann Sibeal in Kerry, and also on some sandy sites in Scandinavia, which gave me experience of shaping in sand – which is a dream to work with, as you can be more organic in your shaping decisions and not be hampered with the limitations of a heavy clay site. So this project has made me that kid in the dunes again! An Irish architect, beautiful links terrain and Jameson whiskey – what could possibly go wrong?” The central challenge for any architect on the Jameson property is that, although it has some beautiful dunes, there are not enough of them to house eighteen holes. The dunes, which are quite high, essentially form a barrier between the flatter ground inland (which is still linksy, just less dramatic) and the sea. As such, the only places on the course from which the sea could conceivably be seen are up in the dunes, and in Eby’s original design, there were not that many of them. Lynch has tried, with some success, to create more. Additionally, almost all the holes previously played broadly in a northsouth direction, obviously less than ideal on a windy links site, particularly given that the prevailing wind comes from the south-west and thus was to the side on almost every hole. Lynch has created two entirely new par threes, the ninth and fifteenth, playing almost directly towards the water, in the duneland, to alleviate these issues. Both holes are excellent: a very picky commentator might complain that both play between 140-145 metres (153-159 yards), but given their setting among the dunes close to the sea and the excellent greens that both have, it would be hypercritical to do so. “I really like the new ninth, as it is a complete change in direction from the other par threes and draws your attention to the coastline,” says Lynch. “The green is one of the largest on the course, with some bold contours to help a player to certain hole locations or make for some fun recovery shots. Unlike the west coast, the wind here is not predominantly from one direction, which adds a bit more variation.” The tenth hole is a difficult, though not especially long, dogleg left par “ I really like the new ninth, as it is a complete change in direction from the other par threes and draws your attention to the coastline” Lynch adopted a hands-on approach to ensure his renovation plan was followed faithfully Photo: (re)GOLF