Valderrama, Spain

• 28 June 2011 •

Sophie Horn at Valderrama


Having played golf for all but four years of my life, I hadn’t had the opportunity of playing Valderrama, but had obviously heard so much about it.

Having held the Volvo Masters there for so many years and the Ryder Cup with Seve as Captain, there is so much history associated with the course already, even though it’s not that old.

I was however, presented with that opportunity of playing there recently, as my Manager Woolfie decided it would be a fitting birthday present for me.

Valderrama has been consistently voted the No 1 Golf Course in Europe for many years now. I can see why.

Everything is geared up for your enjoyment. From them taking your clubs from your car, to them being placed on the range. We hit a few balls to loosen up and then headed to the practice putting green, before taking our place at the 1st tee.

It’s not an exceptionally long course by modern standards, but it’s genuinely the first course I’ve played where you have to think about every single shot and work out exactly where you want the ball to be.

For instance, the 2nd hole – it’s no good smacking a drive straight down the middle, as there is a tree there which will then block your path to the green!!

Hit too long (above the hole) on the par-3 6th and you can easily look at triple bogey.

The course is presented immaculately. The ‘run-ups’ to the greens are good enough to be greens themselves, and of course the greens are like carpets. Very, very fast carpets!

It was a beautiful golfing experience and one that I would recommend to all serious golfers to try to do at least once during their golfing career.

For the record I beat Woolfie 3 & 2 and luckily for him I didn’t putt particularly well or it might have been a bigger margin of victory!