Pinehurst Resort & Country Club’s famed Course No. 2, in the Village of Pinehurst, N.C., has been selected by the United States Golf Association (USGA) as the site of the 2024 U.S. Open Championship. The dates of the championship are June 13-16.

“Pinehurst has elevated itself to one of the great and historic places in golf in this country,” said Thomas J. O’Toole Jr., USGA president. “Some say it’s our St. Andrews – it’s certainly something special, and that’s why we’re going back there for the 2024 U.S. Open.”

Prior to the 2024 U.S. Open, Pinehurst will host the 2017 U.S. Amateur Four-Ball Championship and the 2019 U.S. Amateur Championship. The resort hosted the historic back-to-back U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open Championships in June 2014, won by Martin Kaymer and Michelle Wie.

“It’s quite a compliment for Pinehurst to extend to us such generous invitations for both the U.S. Amateur in 2019 and the U.S. Open in 2024, right on the heels of our marvelous experience with the back-to-back U.S. Open and U.S. Women’s Open last year,” said Diana Murphy, USGA vice president and Championship Committee chairman.

The 2024 U.S. Open will mark the fourth U.S. Open and 11th USGA championship at Pinehurst. In addition to the unprecedented 2014 Opens, the USGA has conducted these national championships at Pinehurst No. 2: the 1962 U.S. Amateur (won by Labron Harris Jr.); the 1989 U.S. Women’s Amateur (won by Vicki Goetze-Ackerman); the 1994 U.S. Senior Open (won by Simon Hobday); the 1999 U.S. Open (won by Payne Stewart); the 2005 U.S. Open (won by Michael Campbell) and the 2008 U.S. Amateur (won by Danny Lee).

Donald Ross designed the course, which opened in 1907. Ross would fine-tune the layout several times until his death in 1948. Rees Jones completed renovations prior to the 1999 U.S. Open. Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw completed a restoration of the course in March 2011 that brought back many of the design characteristics from Ross’ own 1935 renovation.

“There are so many iconic holes at Pinehurst,” said USGA Executive Director Mike Davis. “Take the fifth hole, which we played as a par 5 (in 2014) – a great risk-reward hole where we saw players laying up in two and having a tricky third shot. We also saw players go for it, and saw some eagles there – but we saw a lot of ‘others,’ too. It’s a great course that requires fine shotmaking and good thinking.”

The club annually conducts the North & South Amateur Championship, a prestigious national competition that began in 1901, as well as the Women’s North & South Amateur, which began just two years later.

Pinehurst No. 2 has also hosted three international championships, the 1967 World Senior Amateur Team, 1980 World Amateur Team and 1980 Women’s World Amateur Team. Other significant championships played on the course include the 1936 PGA Championship (won by Denny Shute), the 1951 Ryder Cup Match (won by the USA), the 1991 Tour Championship (won by Craig Stadler) and the 1992 Tour Championship (won by Paul Azinger).

“It is an honor and a privilege to be named as the site for the 2024 U.S. Open,” said Pinehurst Resort & Country Club President Tom Pashley. “We take great pride in our relationship with the USGA and feel fortunate they have chosen to bring the national championship back to Pinehurst for the fourth time in just 25 years.”

Bill Coore’s history in Pinehurst dates back to the 1960s, when he and boyhood friends from Davidson County often played 36 or 54 holes on summer days on No. 2.

Ben Crenshaw first visited Pinehurst in 1973, when he finished second in the World Open in his second event as PGA Tour member.

Their experiences then and since playing and studying Donald Ross’s tour de force have been bedrock influences in their golf design partnership, which dates to 1985. Since then they have designed more than two dozen golf courses worldwide, and in 2010–2011 they returned to Pinehurst to supervise the restoration of No. 2 from an emerald green swath of Bermuda grass back to the wide fairways and rugged look of hardpan sand and wire grass bordering the fairways.

“You have to go to Dornoch and to the old country to understand the appeal this ground had for Mr. Ross,” Crenshaw says. “You set your feet on links turf for the first time and you say, ‘My gosh, this is bone dry, this is different.’ The only water on those golf courses is what falls from the sky. The ball takes off and you just say, ‘Wow.’ The turf conditions there are very different. There are only a few spots where you can emulate Dornoch, and this is one of them.”

Coore made frequent references during his monthly visits to Pinehurst that the course was too pretty and too much defined by smooth, straight lines—like those surrounding bunkers and fairways.

“You look at all the golf magazines today, the courses they are featuring have this very natural, evolved look to them,” Coore says. “None of them portray the sense of the perfectly manicured look. Those are not the ones coming to the forefront. Bandon Dunes is in every magazine you pick up. Well, Pinehurst has been that since its inception. It was the leader in the beginning of very natural golf courses. It was one of the most natural-looking golf courses in the entire country.”

A key element of the restoration was the removal of some 32 acres of Bermuda rough and the reinstallation of hardpan sand and the planting of more than 100,000 wiregrass plants.

Coore remembered watching a U.S. Open qualifying tournament on No. 2 in the 1960s when Phil Rodgers cleanly picked a long iron shot off the hardpan and landed it on the green.

“The sound the club made hitting that sand was different from anything I had ever heard,” Coore says. “It was so interesting to me. I remember standing there and thinking, ‘This is infinitely more interesting than if he’d been in grass three inches thick.’ It’s a vivid memory.”

By Lee Pace