Solheim Cup: Des Moines GCC and weather update

(Photo by Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images)
(Photo by Thomas Niedermueller/Getty Images) /

Solheim Cup teams start official practice rounds at Des Moines GCC today and the Junior Solheim Cup foursome and fourball matches begin.

Our Solheim Cup countdown continues with a focus today on the venue and the weather.  But first, it’s Tuesday and there’s more going on at the Des Moines Golf and Country Club than the Team USA and Team Europe practice rounds.

The gates open Tuesday morning at the Des Moines Golf and Country Club at 7am, with Junior Solheim fourball matches teeing off at 7:30am and the foursome matches at 1pm local time.

For those who are following the Solheim Cup practice rounds begin, they begin at 8am local time with Team USA going off the 1st tee and Team Europe off the 10th.

The KPMG Women’s Leadership Summit convenes from 10am-5pm.

The venue

The Des Moines Golf and Country Club has Pete Dye’s imprimatur on it. Dye designed the original 36 hole North Course-South Course layout in 1967-1968. Working with Tim Liddy during the 2013-2016 period, Dye also supervised course renovations. We can look forward to some typical Dye challenges and tests in strategic bunker placement and the use of other hazards.

The Solheim Cup layout combines 9 holes from each course into the 18-hole championship layout that will play up to 6894 yards this week. Only Colorado Golf Club, which hosted the 2013 Solheim Cup, has played longer. The Des Moines track, played at less than 1000 feet ASL, will feel considerably longer and post different kinds of skill tests than the Colorado track (6100 feet ASL).

Power and length are going to matter in Des Moinesl So are attitude, fortitude, and determination. The Pink Panther is certainly looking ready for the test!

Summer started hot and early in Iowa but the temperatures have leveled out over the past month, so the golf course is green but dry and the greens are going to be fast.

Rick Tegtmeier, the the Des Moines GCC director of grounds, summed up playing conditions this way:

"[The players] are going to find a nice course, challenging and difficult, and looking ahead — you can never believe the forecast — if we get rain, the rough will just get thicker."

The weather

More from Solheim Cup

Nothing’s certain when it comes to weather forecasting, particularly during August in Iowa, but conditions are looking to be very favorable for golf.

There’s a 20% chance of daily rain from Friday through Sunday. That’s about as good as we’re going to get in the way of an assurance of no severe weather delays.

Daytime temperatures will range in the high 80s. The wind will be light and primarily from the west, and humidity will stay below 60%.

In other words, it’s looking like the weather will remain favorable and not negatively impact on distance or roll. Fast greens are probably going to be the norm throughout this year’s Solheim Cup.

Next: Meet Team Europe

Don’t expect pairings for the Friday foursome and fourball matches until late Thursday. I’m eager to see how the captains pair their players because then we’ll have a sense of strengths and weaknesses, but we can’t rush Captains Inkster and Sörenstam..