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Mocklow predicts Championship surprises

Anthony Mocklow has promised players in this weekend's Bacardi National Par 3 Championships that they will face a few surprises on the Fairmont Southampton golf course.

The director of golf at Fairmont Southampton and Riddell's Bay said quicker greens and slick run offs were just some of the challengers the competitors would face in tomorrow's first round.

Among those taking part will be defending champion Daniel Augustus, as well as former PGA Tour winner Ian Leggatt, and Nick Taylor, who was the number one amateur in the world in 2009.

In a field of 85, there will be golfers of all abilities, and Mocklow said the course would appeal to everyone.

“We've nurtured the golf course a lot over the last –12 months and we did player feedback last year, asked them how they felt we set the golf course up, and nobody complained about the slick run off from the green,” he said.

“We're going to look at doing a little bit of that (again this year). We've got a few surprises in store for the players. The greens are running a lot faster this year, I think players of all levels will enjoy the golf course.”

Leggatt was certainly impressed, and compared the Fairmont's executive course to Pebble Beach.

“I think the beauty of this place specifically is that it is actually designed for this,” he said. “A lot of par three golf courses are afterthoughts with some extra land, they just throw a couple of holes out there, and there's really not a lot of good design features.

“I really like the green complexes here, how fairly flat they are for a par three golf course. You have an opportunity to have numerous different pin placements, the bunkering is great, and obviously, the views are magnificent, something you would normally get at Pebble Beach, not on a par three golf course.”

The Canadian, who now manages players, including Taylor and current PGA Tour professional Hunter Mahan, through his agency, Wasserman Athlete Management, said he thought there was potential to grow the event in the coming years.

“I think the uniqueness of coming to play in a par three event is something that will appeal, I was fortunate enough to bring Nick (Taylor) along with me and I think we're going to add great value to the event,” he said.

“I think the potential for this event to grow out, something that Anthony definitely aspires to, is very viable and if I can add any value at all in any point in time to that, I'm more than willing to help.

“I was fortunate to get out and play the golf course this morning for the first time.

“I haven't played too many par three golf courses in my life and this is something that's very special.

“I think it has huge potential to attract other tour players to come here and hopefully we can do something to do that and make the event bigger and better in the future.”

Teeing-off: Fairmont Southampton director of golf, Anthony Mocklow (left), Ian Leggatt (centre) and Stuart Stewart Gurr. managing director – Bermuda Office, Bacardi International Limited, at Fairmont Southampton golf course yesterday. .

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Published March 25, 2011 at 2:00 am (Updated March 25, 2011 at 9:54 am)

Mocklow predicts Championship surprises

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