9 reasons to love Augusta National

2016 04 Getty Images 519259204
• Bryce Ritchie is in love with Augusta National
• 'Even the rubbish is pretty'


It’s only Tuesday and I’ve already fallen in love with Augusta National. Here’s why.

No.1 It’s a no-nonsense place

At the Open, there’s always somebody trying to figure something out. Cables, trucks, somebody reversing a buggy, a lorry going somewhere it’s not meant to, some drunk guy lying in the rough. Everywhere you go, there’s a racket. Not here. The place is as tidy as you can imagine.

No.2 Everyone is happy

You can see it in their faces and in their tone of voice. Every single patron know they’re in a special place, and there’s a healthy respect amongst them. Isn’t that the way it should be?

No.3 It smells like heaven

Not only does it look tremendous, it smells tremendous. This is my favourite part of Augusta National. I’m told it’s caused by the mass of pine needles that line many of the walkways. Hopefully Dobbies has bags of them in stock for my return.

No.4 Customers are No.1

Despite what you might have been told, Augusta National cares about its customers. The place is ridiculously geared towards making patrons feel welcome. And parking is free. Apparently that’s to discourage patrons from being ripped off elsewhere. What’s not to admire about that policy?
'Not only does it look tremendous, it smells tremendous.'

No.5 Phones are banned

I remember standing behind the 18th tee at the 2004 Open Championship, in near darkness, watching Ernie Els and Todd Hamilton go at it in the play-off - and some idiot was talking on his phone four feet from Els as he was going through his practice routine. That can’t happen here as phones are banned. So is running. Who’d want to run, anyway?

No.6 Magnolia Lane

I’ve only seen Magnolia Lane in the dark and even then it looks incredible. Washington Road is nothing to write home about, but one driveway certainly stands out.

No.7 Amen Corner

Nothing beats your first visit to  Amen Corner. Nothing.

No.8 The merchandise tent

I was only in the for 15 minutes and parted with $92. And it’s only the first day. “Get me out of here!” says one patron, knowing his Visa is going to take a hit. He did have a massive smile on his face, though. Little wonder. I mean, who doesn’t want a massive Augusta National bath towel?

No.9 Even the rubbish is awesome

You don’t throw your beer cup in the bin. It’s got the Augusta National logo on it. So do the packets of crisps! I saw one guy going through the bins for beer cups. Seriously.

Augusta National :: Have you ever been there?

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