Robert Trent Jones Jr. honored as SentryWorld hosts US Junior Girls Championship
Robert Trent Jones Jr. has designed some of the best golf courses in the world, but he still considers SentryWorld to be one of his greatest creations.
The world-renowned course architect was honored Friday as the trailblazing and historic course hosts the 71st U.S. Girls Junior Championship, which got underway Monday with the first of two stroke-play rounds for 156 players.
Jones, who turns 80 this week, was honored with a plaque near the hole that SentryWorld is most known for, the No. 16 Flower Hole.
Jones Jr. said he’s always considered SentryWorld not just his “Mona Lisa,” but also the “Augusta of the North.”
“John Joanis, then (Sentry) chairman and my client, said, ‘Bob, I’d like this to be a parkland course like Augusta.’ I said, ‘You want this to be the Augusta of the North?’ He said, ‘Aim high.’ And we did,” Jones Jr. said.
SentryWorld opened in 1982 and was considered Wisconsin’s first destination course. Four years later, SentryWorld hosted its first USGA championship.
Jones Jr. returned 30 years later to help with major renovations that closed the course from 2012 to 2014.
“Maybe it is the Augusta of the North. I see the conditioning here actually being equal to Augusta,” Jones Jr. said Friday. “Now, that’s a big statement. Augusta may differ with me, but I went out and the greens are absolutely pure. The fairways look like greens. The white bunkers look like Augusta. It’s not a sandy links course like you’re seeing in the British Open. It’s its own self. And it’s a great piece of art. My Mona Lisa, but your SentryWorld.”