- Paperback: 272 pages
- Publisher: McGraw-Hill; 1 edition (March 1, 1999)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0809226812
- ISBN-13: 978-0809226818
- Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.7 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
- Average Customer Review: 9 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,401,014 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Bury Me in a Pot Bunker Paperback – March 1, 1999
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Published in 1995, "Bury Me In A Pot Bunker" is limited to his designs up the that time. The book is organized into 18 chapters, each taking on the story behind a specific course or two, and Dye's philosophy to course design is introduced only tangentially in asides. Dye and co-author Mark Shaw focus instead on Dye's many personal relationships with course owners and underlings, until the text begins to read like an overlong Oscar speech.
Occasionally an insight into course strategy pokes through, like when he discusses the adversarial character of his job: "Golf course architects should prey on those potential moments of anxiety and pressure," he explains. "The great golf professional's response is to beat them at that game."
That attitude got Dye some flak over the years. His Harbour Town course in South Carolina hosted its first PGA Tour event in 1969, on the same day Dye and his team finished building it, and saw a number of high scores and angry players. It was only when Arnold Palmer won the event that Dye saw the course was going to be a success. His Sawgrass design in Florida drew comparisons between Dye and Darth Vader. Now that course hosts what is considered the Tour's "fifth major"; its "island hole" one of the most thrilling venues in sports.
Not all his courses have been total successes. His PGA West course in California was once a Tour venue until the players urged it be dropped. Dye gives rare expression to hurt feelings about that decision, and also notes some issues that got between him and his employers over the years. One course owner refused to take down trees. Another attempted to micromanage his design. But the narrative never stays on anything long.
Mostly the bosses were all good guys as Dye and Shaw explain it, and stories of one such top-of-the-line rich fellow after another enabling the creation of another showcase track get rote after a while. Dye also discusses his wife and design partner, Alice, and their two sons, but I never felt I got to know him or understand his vision of golf beyond the idea it is for everyone and should be both fun and challenging.
"Although golfers believe Alice and I build demonically difficult courses, that is true only when they are played from the back tees," he notes.
If you care about course design, and have an interest in Dye going in, "Bury Me In A Pot Bunker" may be fine as it is. But if you are an outsider expecting to be drawn into the world of golf architecture, you may find this a surprisingly slow read despite short chapters and a breezily-written narrative. The result is a decent book that leaves a nagging feeling of things unsaid.
The story of the famous island green 17th at the Stadium Course at TPC is one of a kind. I particularly enjoy the story of "Teeth of the Dog", a course that could hardly be replicated in history since it was practically built by hand decades ago at Casa de Campo in the Dominican Republic. It is not only the best Golf Course in the Caribbean -according to Golf Digest and many other publications- but also the birthplace of golf in the DR at this enchanted destination. I consider this course as the "Prima Donna" of the Caribbean and one of the top 20 in any most play list. I hope that in a next edition he could also include one of his most recent courses "Dye Fore" also at this destination which I partially saw in the book Caribbean Architecture: Exclusive Designs by Gianfranco Fini in Marina Casa de Campo and has a breathtaking view all over the Chavon Cannon, the Casa de Campo Marina and, of course, the Caribbean Sea.
Pete's book will help you understand why there is such connection between the player and his courses, how he makes it happened and best of all the anecdotes behind the creation of each one of them. This book is a keeper and it rating is 5 out 5 starts with any doubts. The pictures are touching; the text is like talking to Pete himself and; is a most for any golf aficionado.
Great read here. If you are into golf or into Pete Dye you will love this book.