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Course 97: Ridder Farm GC

Ridder Farm GC (public)

East Bridgewater, Mass.

Date Played: May 5, 2023

Yardages: 4,862 - 5,917

Ridder Farm is a tale of two nines. Yes, it’s a cliche, but trust me.

The front 9 has dive bar vibes. The layout is wide open with arrow-straight holes aside from the cape-style 5th and 9th. It’s a par 34, no space for any par 5s on this side of the street.

Even for its scruffy appearance, Ridder Farm’s front nine had a bit of charm and interest. In particular, the third hole, on a drizzly, Irish-type morning, made club choice vital to avoid the water on the par-3.

I liked the 8th hole a lot. A long par-3 measuring 190 from the tips. It’s well bunkered and the green’s shape (a touch fallic…) and back-to-front slope makes par a very good score.

The back nine is a par 36 with a nice mix of holes. It’s narrower than the front nine, but not super-tight. The openness of the front 9 makes it feel more narrow than it actually is. But sprayers will pay the price.

The 11th hole, the first par 5, is a short one (473 yards), but it turns slightly up hill to the left. It’s the first hole with any elevation. After teeing off back down the hill on 12, it’s also the last time this former farmland tests a golfer’s cardio.

The other par 5 on the back is so preposterous that it deserves some respect. Massive power line polls are smack in the middle of the hole (they might be the same lines that cross Strawberry Valley a few miles down the road..)

Ridder is not a long course, but the holes that dogleg all have trees blocking corners, taking away angles. Namely hole Nos. 5, 9, 10, 14, and 16 would all be better with some more options off the tee. The 9th in particular had huge trees immediately to the left of the tee box and takes the water hazard out of play.

Ridder is an easy walk and a great place to scrape off the rust with the open front 9 and a back 9 that provides a bit more challenge.

I was SHOCKED at how good the greens were. Boomerangs and potato chips come to mind. Are they amazing greens? No. But they absolutely stand out in contrast to the rest of what RF has to offer. They made the round enjoyable and engaging.

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