Celebrating its 30th birthday, Lingfield Park is a varied and challenging course that will keep you interested from start to finish - Rob Smith returns...

Lingfield Park Golf Course Review

The distinctive layout at Lingfield Park that runs either side of the horse racing track was opened in 1987. More recently a large hotel with spa has been added to appeal equally to golfers and race-goers, and it is now managed by Arena Racing Company under the Marriott brand. It is now in fine company as two courses in the Golf Monthly Next 100, Forest of Arden and Hanbury Manor, are also in the group.

The course opens with a short hole, usually played with the wind behind, which enables the golfing groups to spread out right from the start.

The well-framed par-3 opening hole

The next is a par 5 that runs adjacent to the railway line, and the 3rd is a very attractive par 4 where anything short will find water and there is a run-off to the right.

A pond guards the approach at the third hole

Holes four and five run through mature woodland, and the 6th is perhaps the prettiest hole on the course played over a pond to a tricky two-tier green. A short par 4 runs up the hill which you then descend and climb again at eight and nine.

The seventh plays left to right and up a slope

The back nine starts with another attractive par 3, this one slightly downhill and to a green that can be difficult to find.

The short tenth is well protected by trees

After the par-4 11th, you cross the racetrack to play the next five holes on the other side. The 13th is a pretty dogleg, played right to left, and the fifteenth is an excellent long hole which the really big hitters may want to go for in two.

The approach to the attractive thirteenth is over a ditch

Crossing the racetrack again, you play a short par 4 with an approach to a green that has OOB on the left and trees and a stream on the right. Anything offline will be severely punished.

A scarily narrow approach awaits at the penultimate hole

The closing hole raises hopes of a par or even birdie as it is a reachable par 5, but once again it demands straight hitting.

The closing hole at Lingfield Park is a short but narrow par 5

The club has recently launched a new Academy with residential packages making it a great place to learn the game.

I have been playing the course at Lingfield Park on and off since it opened and it has matured well, offering plenty of fun from start to finish.