Oklahoma City Golf & Country Club
Nichols Hills, Oklahoma
“Being given the responsibility to renovate and restore the Maxwell/MacKenzie course at Oklahoma City Golf & Country Club is uniquely exciting for me. I first played the course in 1985 as a freshman on the University of Oklahoma golf team, and it has since been one of my favorite courses in the world. Being able to bring the golf course back to more what it was intended to be by Mr. Maxwell and Mr. MacKenzie will be one the greatest thrills of my professional career.” - Tripp Davis.
Photo Credit: Mike Klemme
Tripp Davis and Associates (TDA) were retained by Oklahoma City Golf & Country Club to direct the extensive renovation and restoration of the Perry Maxwell and Alister MacKenzie designed course that opened in 1929. The Oklahoma City Golf & Country Club was one of only a few courses that Maxwell and MacKenzie collaborated on, with Crystal Downs in Michigan, and the Ohio State University Scarlett Course being two of the more high profile courses they did together.
TDA renovated drainage, cart paths, the structure of tees, greens and bunkers, and re-grass most of the course, to include using Latitude 36 Bermuda for tees and fairways, and 007 Bent Grass for the greens. Work included restoring the original rounded/irregular shape of the tees, returning strategic widths in fairways and removing many introduced trees, plus restoring the strategic intent and style of the bunkers and the size of the original greens.
The work to the greens also included preserving the existing contours, mostly original, while making minor changes to enhance them for modern play. All greens had the existing contours scanned and each layer of the rebuilding of the greens will be carefully monitored with GPS equipment to make sure the important contours are artfully preserved. TDA also worked with EC Design of West Des Moines, Iowa, to plan a completely new irrigation and pumping system.
TDA Shaper Jason Gold, who has been a TDA staff member for over 10 years, was on site to shape the course, while Tripp oversaw the shaping of the surfaces of the greens to preserve the existing character. "Jason and I made sure that every detail is right and that every strategic element is pure to how Mr. Maxwell and Mr. MacKenzie wanted the course to play. They were extraordinary at making everything they did look like a natural part of the land, and using that to create beautiful strategic variety and interest, highlighted by the angles they created and the importance of precision when playing into the greens,” stated Tripp.
Oklahoma City Golf & Country Club closed its golf course for construction in the winter of 2018. The club had a limited reopening in December 2019 and full play resumed in Spring 2020.