Day two of our Mauritius golfing odyssey at Belle Mare Plage saw us take on The Legend course. This was where David Frost (RSA) won the MCB Tour Championship last December. Albeit off the blue tees (6,588 yards) with me off the white tees (6,178 yards). Although I did have a caddie the same as they would have done.
The Legend does allow you to walk the course and carry your bag, but in the heat you would have to be bonkers to do that. A, what is called, 1st Grade caddie will cost you around £9 + tip and these will not just carry, but offer advice on club selection, line off the tee and crucially lines on the green.
There are also 2nd Grade caddies available, think “Fore Caddie” in the USA where they just carry your bag, find your ball if necessary and that’s it.
My caddie was called Miguel (8 handicapper) and if you go there an play I recommend you ask for him by name. Within five holes he was handling me clubs without any discussion and with only one exception he was right every time. He knew when to chat, when to keep quiet and got me round in 5 over par (handicap 7) and no double bogies or worse….which in unusual for me (I normally throw in at least one double bogey every round if not two). The highlight was consecutive birdies at holes 13 & 14, stroke index 6 & 4, so not particularly easy holes!
The course is very different to The Links. Much flatter and better worked into the natural surroundings. Lots more water around. In fact there is water on around 16 of the 18 holes, but for someone with my length & handicap, there are probably only 9 holes where it is truly in play.
My only encounter with the water was actually on the 18th. I pushed my 3 wood second shot into the water right of the fairway/green, when frankly I should have hit a 4 iron to 100 yards out and left a wedge for my third shot. As it was the point where my ball crossed the hazard was 105 yards out and with a hard 52 degree wedge to 12”, it was a tap in for a five!
Having played both courses I can’t actually choose a favourite as they are so different in terms of layout and the types of holes. If you spray the ball around, then I think The Links is much more forgiving.
I really nice touch on the 18th green was Miguel asking me to write a little recommendation for him in a small notebook, which I was of course very happy to do. I also left him the address of this blog, so one day I hope he’ll pop up below with a comment!