Top Designer Names Cavendish

Tom Doak gives his verdict

Tom Doak, American golf course architect and renowned author of guides to courses worldwide, has just written an article in Links Golf USA naming the 10 most underrated courses in Great Britain and Ireland.

Alongside such iconic courses as The Old Course at St.Andrews, Royal St George’s and Askenish on South Uist he has included Cavendish, writing that ‘the 440-yard 10th will confound any notion that the course isn’t challenging enough’

In Doak’s recently published book which surveys 288 British and Irish courses he writes that Cavendish‘was overlooked for decades by architectural groupies because of its 5800-yard scorercard … Its par 68 punches well above its class.


Cavendish is certainly in good company here …



It just gets better.


Tom Doak is a leading golf course architect and the most respected and forthright of course appraisers.

He has been appointed to advise on the facilities at the National Golf Centre, the home of England Golf at Woodhall Spa in Lincolnshire.


About Tom Doak

Doak is a “minimalist” designer. Minimalism is a school of golf design that focuses on concentrating design of a golf hole (or routing) around the natural features of the land. His most successful courses have been built on sand dunes, taking advantage of the sandy soil for drainage also allowing for the reuse of native elements.

Doak credits most of his accomplishments and success to golf course designer Pete Dye. Doak worked with Dye to learn how to construct golf courses during graduate school. Doak was exposed to several different schools of design on multiple continents in a variety of conditions. Jim Urbina taught him how to run a bulldozer allowing for Doak to think in three dimensions and how to use the materials around him.

In 2015 he announced he would spend a significant amount of time during the ensuing few years, researching for a new edition of his book, The Confidential Guide to Golf Courses.


Doak has written four books about Golf Course Design:



2 replies
  1. Brian Doig
    Brian Doig says:

    Live from Abu Dhabi, during my Captains year 2016, I had the priveledge to play a round at our beloved Cavendish with Mr Malfeit from Belgium, who is one of only a few who has played all the MacKenzie courses Worldwide. On reaching our tenth tee he was literally leaping in the air ” this is the finest par 4 I have seen anywhere in the World on MacKenzie courses. He said the design was pure genius considering when and how the course would have been constructed. Thanks to Mike Watson for getting us where we belong in the Golfing World.

    • Mike Watson
      Mike Watson says:

      Hi Brian (blessings be upon you)
      Thanks for reminding me of Mr Malfeit’s visit last year and his incredible quote.
      When you get Tom Doak making the same comment, the serious golfers will want to take a look and challenge themselves against the course.
      Many thanks for your generous comments and we hope to see you safely back in Blighty very soon – and hopefully before the snow!
      Best regards


Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.