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SPORTS WEEKEND

Southland Focus

April 30, 1999|MIKE JAMES, 11 handicap

A weekly look at golf courses open to the public in Southern California.

TORREY PINES MUNICIPAL GOLF COURSE (NORTH)

Address: 11480 N. Torrey Pines Rd., La Jolla

Phone: (619) 570-1234

Green fees: $20 weekdays and $22 weekends for San Diego city residents; $47 and $52 for nonresidents.

Tee times: Seven days in advance by phone, starting at 5 a.m. daily; up to eight weeks in advance from the pro shop for $95-$110 (including cart and a pro with the group for three holes).

The facility: The shorter of the two jam-packed seaside courses, both designed by William Bell Sr.

The good: Nice views, when the sun shines, and cool breezes. Large, undulating greens are not in peak condition now but will challenge most amateurs.

The bad: They're putting in a new irrigation system on the North and it's expected to be completed late this summer. Until then, there's pink pipe scattered around the back nine and little potholes and mounds of dirt in several fairways. "It's like a pinball game," one of my companions said. But there's no reduction in green fees. Also, keep a close eye on your ball at 18; the fairway and rough are littered with range balls.

The score: A double-bogey while the irrigation system is being installed. Stick to the South Course until then. Whichever you play, bring enough clothes. My playing partner and I had on four layers when we finished, although temperatures in low 70s had been forecast.

Overall rating: 2 1/2 balls.

Overall rating: 3 1/2 balls

* One ball: No-frills golf.

** Two balls: Worth an occasional round.

*** Three balls: Like shooting four strokes under your handicap.

**** Four balls: Where the golf gods play.

****

*--*

Hole Back Tees Middle Tees Par Front Tees 1 520 511 5 504 2 326 313 4 303 3 121 112 3 109 4 398 384 4 374 5 371 355 4 346 6 206 150 3 141 7 400 354 4 346 8 436 418 4 404 9 497 480 5 470 Out 3,275 3,077 36 2,997 10 416 404 4 391 11 437 422 4/5 410 12 190 174 3 159 13 430 418 4/5 407 14 507 490 5 478 15 3971 387 4 377 16 388 323 4 314 17 172 159 3 125 18 485 472 5 460 In 3,372 3,249 36/38 3,121 Total 6,647 6,326 72/74 6,118

*--*

Rating/Slope: Back--72.2/128; Middle--70.4/124; Front--71.7/125

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