Everything To Know About 2018’s Ryder Cup Site: Le Golf National
The 2018 Ryder Cup will be hosted by the European team, specifically at Le Golf National in Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines, Paris. As a quick refresher, the Ryder Cup is a biennial tournament in which some of the best golfers from America and Europe take each other on. The two teams alternate hosting duties such that the course is never the same twice, and the players compete purely for pride (and fun) with no prize money on the line. These factors – the pride-centric competition and the nature of America versus Europe – combine to make it one of the most openly joyous and fun-filled occasions in professional golf. Ryder Cup matches tend to have looser atmospheres, and sometimes even the players seem to be having more fun than usual.
This year the spectacle will take place, as mentioned, at Le Golf National, and we’ve put together everything a fan might want to know about the course in advance of the tournament (which takes place late in September).
It’s Ranked 13th Best In France
According to at least one very thorough ranking if European courses, Le Golf National is the 13th highest-ranked course in France (7th in its region, and 57th in all of Europe). That may actually not sound that high when considering it’s being used for a major international tournament. But France has more golf courses than some might guess, and these rankings are always subjective to a degree. 13th in France is fairly strong recognition, and it’s also indicative of the course’s unique quality that the Ryder Cup is being held there instead of at a top-10 course.
The Course Is Marked By Lakes
This point speaks for itself, but still needs to be made. This course is beautifully dotted with small lakes and ponds, which comprise a lot of the hazards but also make it that much more picturesque. Most notable of all is a lake that touches the greens on 15, 16, and 18 and serves as a sort of natural stage for a thrilling home stretch.
There’s Room For A Ton Of Spectators
Some of these beautiful European courses can sound sort of remote and small by description. But an overview of the tournament for 2018 noted specifically that even as venues differ year by year, each must be able to hold tens of thousands of fans. Accordingly, Le Golf National (which is actually in Paris, technically) has room for the kinds of huge crowds that can often show up for the Ryder Cup. Evidently, as many as 60,000 fans at a time can pack the course in spectator areas.
It’s A Difficult Course
There’s actually a good mix of terrains and challenges at Le Golf National, and many of its heels are notable for their stadium designs. That said, a rundown of the course points out several significant hurdles including long rough, the aforementioned lakes and ponds, and a few narrow fairways mixed in. It’s not a course that’s notoriously difficult, but rather one with some intricacies and hazards that can sneak up on a player. It’s a little more treacherous than it looks.
It’s likely going to be very difficult to secure a tee time at Le Golf National for the remainder of this year, as it’s undoubtedly in higher demand with the Cup coming, and will need to be maintained for the tournament as well. Generally speaking though, this is fairly accessible for a course being used professionally. Le Golf National is owned by the French Golf Federation and often available for public use.