The whole cluster of holes 15-17 with the nickname “Bear Trap” ranked top 4 in terms of difficulty on March 20 – the penultimate day of the PGA Tour event with a prize fund of seven million USD in Florida.

Inspired by the nickname “Golden Bear” by the great golfer Jack Nicklaus who owns 18 major in the collection of 73 PGA Tour trophies, “The Bear Trap” is one of the most difficult series of holes in the world, consisting of two par3 holes. par4. On the side of the small path to the 15-hole teeing ground, there was a sign engraved with the warning “Win or lose is here”.

Yesterday, hole 15 was 154 yards with the target near the right edge of the green. And like that, a lot of players got caught in the water trap. At the end of the round, it recorded eight birdies while hole 16 was full par or worse, hole 17 was only one birdie. In terms of the overall difficulty of the field, hole 15 is third, hole 16 is fourth and hole 17 is first.

Bear Traps at PGA National Stadium.  Photo: PGA Tour

Cluster of “Bear Trap” on PGA National Stadium. Image: PGA Tour

At the top of hole 15, Keegan Bradley was close to the top thanks to a score of -6 after 14 holes at the same time -8 from the start of the tournament. However, he played in the lake and closed the double bogey hole, then because of water, the bogey of hole 16 and kept the par hole. Other players also fluttered.

Matt Jones said he did not venture into the green in the holes in “Bear Trap”. At this point, he hit par – the key factor to top Group -10 after 54 holes at the end of the day. “There’s no hole in the trap for birdies. They’re kind of ‘don’t make a big mistake. My part gets par so it’s fine.’

JB Holmes passed “Bear Trap” with birdie-bogey-par, followed by T2, three strokes behind Jones. Aaron Wise kept the top of the group and led the penultimate first three strokes, raising the gap to six strokes after five holes. However, Wise bogey both the par3 holes in the bear trap and it was the 15th bogey that made him lose the top of the table. At the end of the match, Wise stood T2 with Holmes.

And defending champion Im Sung-jae reached -3 through 16 holes. But at hole 17, he hit the bunker on the left side of the green. Due to being afraid of the ball in the lake behind the flag that marked the crater, Im changed direction on the second shot. He escaped the trap but caught rough. Into the green in the third shot, the Korean player added two more putts to close the double bogey. Less than five strokes but in theory, Im still has the door to defend the title.

Since Honda Classic was first moved to PGA National in 2007, considering the out-of-major events, “Trapping Bear” has been the third series of three difficult holes at the PGA Tour. The first position belongs to sections 16-18 of Quail Hollow, followed by sections 8-10 of Pebble Beach.

From the initial period to 2020, there were 543 different golfers hitting at least one round and 415 of whom lost at least one ball to the lake at “Bear Trap”. Calculating the total number of lost balls since 2007, the water trap swallowed 666 balls in hole 15 and 455 in hole 16. In 2019, the area recorded a total of 257 bogey points or worse.

Quoc Huy (follow PGA Tour)


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