Played by NCG: BroraNovember 16, 2018 Courses and Travel
If you're in the area to play Royal Dornoch then you must visit Brora. You won’t be disappointed, writes Tom Lenton
Reason for a Brora Golf Club review
As part of golf break around Scotland, we had a late afternoon tee time for Royal Dornoch so it seemed silly not to have a knock around Brora that morning.
Where is Brora Golf Club?
From Inverness it’s just over an hour up the coast. We stayed in Dornoch the night before and the 30-minute drive from there to Brora is incredible. I had to shout at my playing partners twice to get off their phones and take in the surroundings.
What to expect
A rugged links that is as natural as they come, the front nine hugs the coastline before you turn and head back to the clubhouse.
At around 6,200 yards off the back tees the course isn’t long, but it all depends on the wind. On the day we had it the front nine played down off the left before playing into after the turn, where bogey became a good score.
The greens were arguably some of the best I have played on all year, running so pure and fast. Several approaches downwind with lofted clubs had to be played away from flags to avoid big run offs and appreciate that par is a good score.
The 6th is a medium-length par 3 to a raised green framed with perfectly placed bunkers. Even after you have hit the green huge slopes make a two putt still tricky. If you miss the green the chip shot is challenging too, often the best option is playing away from the pin and using the huge slopes to feed the ball in.
The 17th (above) also deserves a special mention, a long par 4 with a raised tee giving you a view right across the course and to the ocean.
My best bit
Often my best bits come before or after my worst bits, I had one point from the 10th to the 12th and then parred my shot holes coming in to save my scorecard.
What to look out for
The 18th from the tee looks quite straightforward, but it needs a well-struck long iron. Anything short or long runs down huge slopes below the level of the green. It appears you can run the ball in from the slope on the right but bunkers are well placed here to gather in bouncing balls.
A stream runs through the course and out into the sea, watch out for it off the 5th tee and the lay up on the par-5 11th.
My playing partner failed to warn me about the 11th, where I hit what looked the perfect lay-up only to never see my ball again. He rolled in a birdie putt and I didn’t talk to him again for at least half an hour.
When I go back
I will watch out for the burn water on 5 and 11…