Golf Digest (South Africa) - - Must Play Courses -

Kemp­ton Park is one of the younger mem­ber clubs in Gaut­eng, founded in 1965, and will al­ways be as­so­ci­ated with Ernie Els, who was a ju­nior mem­ber at Kemp­ton Park when at 16 he be­came the youngest win­ner of the SA Am­a­teur ti­tle in 1986. It’s a good con­fer­ence venue, be­ing the clos­est golf course to O R Tambo In­ter­na­tional Air­port, five kilo­me­tres away, and has the ben­e­fit of not be­ing both­ered by air traf­fic.

The orig­i­nal park­land lay­out was de­signed by the part­ner­ship of Bob Grims­dell and Bill Kerr, but both the course and club­house were re­designed in 1981. The course lies on two lev­els, the flat­ter top front nine nearer the club­house, and the lower back nine over­look­ing a recre­ational park. There is a long walk from the club­house past the 18th hole to the tenth tee. The 13th hole takes golfers down­hill to the lower holes. The course opens with a test­ing par 5 of 582 me­tres, but the over­all length is just 6 548 me­tres from the back tees. The club logo is of an Egyp­tian goose, re­flect­ing the large va­ri­ety of birdlife found on the course.

Kemp­ton Park, as Ekurhu­leni Golf Union league cham­pi­ons, re­cently won the Gaut­eng Scratch League Cham­pi­ons Tro­phy for the first time in their his­tory.

Kemp­ton Park has fea­tured in Golf Digest’s Top 100, be­ing ranked No 93 in 2004, but made its last ap­pear­ance in 2005. The club cur­rently has a mem­ber­ship of 814, but is look­ing for new mem­bers. Early bird vis­i­tors (af­fil­i­ated and non-af­fil­i­ated) can play at Kemp­ton Park for R100 if they tee off be­fore 8.30 on week­day morn­ings. Mem­o­rable hole: The 13th is a down­hill par 5, dog­leg right, 496 me­tres, guarded by sev­eral dams on the le˜ of the fair­way, and a bunker in front of the green. Gen­eral Man­ager: Craig Bell. Golf Di­rec­tor: Mike Se­banz.

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