Why are golfers teeing off on Nos. 1 and 9 at The Olympic Club in the 2021 US Women's Open?

Why are golfers teeing off on Nos. 1 and 9 at The Olympic Club in the 2021 US Women’s Open?

Lake Course at Olympic Club

The 2021 US Women's Open marks the first time the USGA has brought the women's national championship to The Olympic Club in San Francisco.

With a field of 156 of the best golfers in the world teeing off on Thursday and Friday, the field has to be split into teeing off from two tees for the opening two rounds. Most weeks, golfers are split up and go off the first and 10th tees at golf courses. However, at The Olympic Club, there's a unique routing that means the golfers go off the first and ninth tees. That's right.

The Olympic Club's Lake Course -- one of three that the club has and is serving as host this week -- has a front eight holes, with the eighth hole coming back to the clubhouse. Then there's a back 10, more or less, with the ninth hole starting at the clubhouse and working out for the final portion of the round.

For players who go off the first tee, they'll, of course, play in ordinal fashion all the way through to the 18th hole. However, for the players who tee off on No. 9, they'll start there and then play around through the 18th hole. They'll then head to the first hole and play the final eight holes of the course to wrap up their round.

That makes leaderboard watching a bit confusing, with players starting on the ninth hole. After all, the scorecard shows a front nine and a back nine, even though that's not how Olympic Club's Lake Course plays logistically.

It's a cool quirk, something unique in the game, and it's a good thing that the players are able to experience it as intended.

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