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Midway • The 2012 U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship might be a year away, but improvements and changes to the Soldier Hollow Golf Course have already begun in preparation for Utah's first USGA Championship.
And the call for the more than 350 volunteers has begun.
"This is the most important public event in the world," USGA representative Mike Bailey said.
Between 5,000 and 7,000 public golfers from the United States and abroad will attempt to qualify for a place in the championship field of 156.
"It changed my golf career," said 2005 champion Clay Ogden of Farmington, whose victory vaulted him into the 2006 Masters. "I realized I could compete with anybody."
Utah Golf Association and United States Golf Association representatives gathered at Soldier Hollow on Tuesday to review the changes that have taken place on the championship Gold Course. One change includes a new hole for No. 11. What was a par five will eventually be turned into a 550-yard par 4.
The Utah State Amateur Championship was recently held on the Gold Course. Eventually, the par 71 course will measure at more than 7,500 yards. New championship tee boxes have been built for six holes and a new scoreboard is already in place. Rough and bunker renovation has also begun.
Volunteer registration begins Aug. 15.
"By this time next year, we'll be in day two of stroke qualifying," Soldier Hollow's Chris Newson said.
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