Tucked away in the annual media guide for the Masters for this year are changes to Augusta National that will add 35 yards to the card, extending the course to 7,510 yards.
The club said the par-4 11th hole tee has been moved back 15 yards and to the left, making it play 520 yards. The fairway has been recontoured and several trees have been removed on the right side.
The par-5 15th hole has a new tee 20 yards back with the fairway also reshaped.
That means the par-4 11th will play longer than the par-5 13th, which remains unchanged at 510 yards. There had been speculation the 13th would be lengthened after Augusta National purchased acreage behind it at Augusta Country Club.
But while the 11th is longer, Rory McIlroy says that doesn’t mean it will be harder.
« I do know they’ve taken the tee back and to the left, so it’s more of a straighter tee shot than a dogleg right, » he said. « They’ve widened the fairway and taken a lot of trees out. Even though it’s a longer hole, they made the tee shot and the second shot a touch easier. »
He said the bigger change is a steeper depression to the right of the green, meaning players missing there will be a few feet lower than the putting surface.
« It will make it trickier, » McIlroy said.
Asked if he was happy the 13th wasn’t changed, McIlroy smiled and said, « I’d be happy if they left everything alone. »