“As we’ve done nearly every year since the inception of the Masters, we evaluate the golf course and make refinements we think are necessary," Billy Payne, tournament and club chairman, said in a prepared statement. "This year, only minor changes were implemented and all were made in order to provide greater flexibility in the event of adverse weather conditions, which we have experienced the last couple of years.”
The changes are:
Hole No. 1: Back of tee reduced 7 yards to improve patron traffic flow between the tee and the practice putting green. Tee marker relocated and Masters scorecard changed from 455 yards to 445 yards. Green rebuilt for agronomic reasons and a heating and cooling system installed.
Hole Nos. 5 and 6: Greens rebuilt for agronomic reasons and heating and cooling systems installed.
Hole No. 7: Landscaping completed on the rear of the tee to reforest a large area which was left open due to the removal of a tournament storage building in 2005. An additional 10 yards added to the front of the tee without necessitating a change in length to the hole.
Hole No. 15: 8-9 yards added to the front of the tee, and a couple of trees removed on the right side of the fairway. Scorecard yardage remained 530 yards.
Mr. Payne also announced the addition of more parking spaces in land acquired by the club off Berckmans Road and an update on the club's new practice facility.
“For 2009, there will be approximately 4,500 more parking spaces located west of Berckmans Road, and significant progress has also been made toward the completion of our new state of the art practice facility, which will be ready for the 2010 Masters," Mr. Payne said. "We also completed construction on our new tournament first aid and security facilities.”