The great James Braid won five Open Championships before he designed the King’s Course at Gleneagles which opened in 1919. Of the more than 200 courses he would go on to design, the King’s is considered to be Braid’s parkland masterpiece. You’ll find links-style pot bunkers, heather and gorse combined with inland characteristics like trees and forests, a generally slower surface; plus numerous elevation changes several of them considerable.
Treasure hunting links golfers will be pleased to find new loot in the Highlands at Castle Stuart. It was Golf Magazine’s “Best New International Course of the Year” in 2009. It was ranked World 56 and selected to host the Barclays Scottish Open in 2011. Better still, if you’re the type that likes to hit the ground playing, the first tee is but 2.9 miles from the airport!
The Championship Course at Carnoustie has been host to the British Open on seven occasions, most recently in 2007 when Padraig Harrington won in a playoff over a gallant and deeply disappointed Sergio Garcia. Ben Hogan won here in 1953; it was his only appearance in the Open but he left a unique legacy for his play on No. 6 named thereafter as “Hogan’s Alley”.
The Turnberry Resort and the Ailsa Course are found on Scotland’s west coast in South Ayrshire. Designer Mackenzie Ross is credited with restoring the course to championship standards when it re opened in 1951 after World War II when the property was converted to an RAF airfield and hospital. Ailsa has staged The Open Championship on four occasions beginning in 1977 with the legendary showdown between Tom Watson and Jack Nicklaus remembered as the “Duel in the Sun”.
Watson’s weekend of 65-65 clipped Nicklaus’ 65-66. They both birdied 18 on Sunday; Nicklaus from 40 feet… Watson from 3! The 2009 British Open was more of the same – remarkably including the same but 59 year old Tom Watson – who came within an eyelash of becoming the oldest major champion in golf history. A visit to Turnberry would include regional clubs like Royal Troon, Prestwick, Western Gailes, Machrihanish and impressive Machrihanish Dunes; plus very often St Andrews for a west coast / east coast combination.
This is one of sixteen Scotland golf course videos we’re posting on a weekly basis to start the year. Each one provides a great sense of the respective experience which we hope will help you confirm your selections from the many available options.