Dom Pedro – Victoria

The first two days were phenomenal already so I was excited for the ultimate show down on day three.
Last year in September I already had the pleasure to play in the Portugal Masters ProAm and enjoy this beauty, designed by Arnold Palmer himself. I gotta admit, that I wasn‘t fully able to take in the course while playing in the ProAm, but still remembered the Victoria for the true masterpiece that it is.

Again the transfer took only 15 minutes, since the course is right next to Laguna and Millenium. When you arrive at the club house, you immediately know that this place is legit. The quality is premium from top to bottom.
My tee time was set for the early afternoon, so of course I had another one of the very recommendable club sandwiches before heading to the range and for a few puts.
Again, the driving range already speaks for the absolute quality of the Victoria Course.

Just a quick tip before talking about the course itself: I would always play the Victoria course early or in the later afternoon, because the midday sun is merciless and the new design of the course doesn‘t offer too many trees and therefore shade.

But let’s get into detail. The first tee gives you a perfect impression of what is waiting for you during the 18 holes here. Long holes with many many bunkers that are positioned perfectly, just where you don‘t want them, of course. Alright, first drive down the fairway, an iron to the middle of the green and the ball keeps rolling…
The greens are absolutely phenomenal. Super fast and just so much fun to play on.

Just what you‘d expect from an European Tour Championship course with the first nine holes just being overwhelmingly sweet. I especially like No. 3, a long Par 5 at about 490 meters from the white tee. You should really bomb one out there on this drive, because the second one can get really tricky when you‘re going for the layup.

The area where you‘d want to put that, is full of bunkers, so you better be accurate or choose a different gameplan. I was lucky enough to hit the fairway and only had a pitching wedge left to attack the green. Again, you don‘t want to leave this one short, because, like I said, the greens are super fast and undulating. Holes No. 5 & 6 are my personal favorites on the front nine due to their spectacularly built bunker design.
The No. 6 Par 3 is an absolute beast and at 160 meters a long iron for me. To play par you have to hit the green though, since this little fucker doesn‘t leave you with too many options. The bunkers in the front will easily catch your shorty if you’re hoping for a little member‘s bounce and if you‘re a bit too long the downslope of the green is just waiting to send you back off the dance floor.

The front nine are a lot different from the back. Here you only have one water hazard on the 7th, which you can easily avoid with a good drive.

That dramatically changes on the second part of your round. On almost every hole you will see well placed water and combined with the fast and bouncy fairways this can get really stressful. Pull a drive just a little bit and you‘re in trouble. Those who know me will be able to guess just how much trouble I was in, but I still liked the back nine better.
My signature hole at the Dom Pedro Victoria Course is the darned 13. A 155 meter Par 3 with an absolutely breathtaking tee box that offers a great view of the green and makes you appreciate the the beauty of the course again.

Snap out of it and hit your 7- or 8-iron into the green, which is very fair a definitely gives you a good chance for birdie. When you think, that was it, take another look in your bag and make sure you brought enough balls, because 14,17 and 18 will once more require your full attention and a well considered game. I would go as far as saying that a bogey on each of these holes is a great result for average players.

Every tee shot has to carry over the water into a small landing zone and then all three greens are also defended by water. This stretch will ultimately decide your score. No. 18, for example, is a brutal 415 meters long from the whites and I consider my double bogey, including a penalty stroke, still as good.

Overall the Dom Pedro Victoria is, in my opinion, one of the best courses in the region and I could easily play another ten rounds on it, while each time being as happy a little kid with a new toy. I can only warmly recommend this course to all of you

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