Interview with André Bossert, Andermatt Golf Ambassador
André Bossert is one of Switzerland’s most successful golfers. His illustrious career to-date includes being the first Swiss player to win on the European tour, and his 2013 golf season has got off to an equally good start. Winning and also placing 2nd in his first outings on this year’s Swiss Tour , André looks in good shape for the season ahead. André’s next adventure on the course will be at the Challenge Tour events, which culminate in the Swiss Challenge in Sempachersee from 11th -14th July 2013.
Mr. Bossert, since 2007 you have been part of the construction of the golf course – recently it was announced that you are the Andermatter Golf Ambassador and their pro consultant. How did this cooperation occur and what fascinates you in particular about the golf course project in Andermatt?
I was approached by Bernhard Russi at the beginning of the project and he asked me to join the Building Commission. I have been involved in golf design with a partner Jean Dardelet for the last 10 years and I am always interested to be involved in new golf projects, so I said yes. It was also a great opportunity for me to work with the renowned golf architect Kurt Rossknecht and bring my experience as a long time playing professional and part time golf designer to the commission.
You have described the golf course in Andermatt as a first class championship golf course. Does the golf course offer outstanding features to describe it as such?
Yes definitely, on paper it has the necessary length and tactical design to qualify for a Championship Golf Course. I played a few holes last year, but I am looking forward to playing all 18 holes this year and then I can give you a true summary of how it plays. What I love about the course is the way it fits so well into the Andermatt landscape; Rossknecht used a lot of the natural elements like rocks and water in his design, which looks great.
The new golf course is situated 1,460 m above sea level. Do players have to adapt the way the play, referring especially to the strong winds? What do players need to consider? Can it be described as an alpine training course?
I grew up in Johannesburg, South Africa which lies at an altitude of 1,800 m above sea level, so I know the effects altitude can have on the ball very well. In Andermatt the ball will fly about 8% further on a nice summer’s day which will make many golfers happy, so they will have to remember to adjust and take 1 club less than they do at sea level. The wind I believe will also be a big factor, but because it generally only blows in 2 directions up or down the valley and the clever design of the holes also run in these direction you will have very few difficult side wind shots but rather into or downwind shots. In the middle of each 9 holes you climb to a plateau and as you turn to return back down you are struck by the great views of Andermatt valley. It will of course depend on a player’s fitness to see how the altitude will affect the game, but the good Andermatt air, beside the altitude, should do wonders to tired golfer’s brains.
Talking about the golf course in Andermatt; we are talking about a PAR72 championship course consisting of 12 more likely flat and 6 hilly fairways. What is your favourite hole and for what reason?
I like the variation of holes you find at Andermatt and because each hole is so unique I don’t have one favourite but a few. I love hole 6 which is the first hole after the turn back down from the plateau, the fairway is banked on both sides as it meanders down to a uniquely located green. I love the holes 7 and 14 because you tee off from a high point and can bomb your drive long down the fairway. I love the little par 3 hole 13 which is set on the side of a cliff and requires a precise approach. The most spectacular use of water on the course comes on holes 9 and 18 which share the same green, the one an extremely demanding par 3 hole and the other an inviting par 5 hole which can end in disaster if you find the pond by the green.
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