Yellow, yes please
Yellow, yes please.
I have only missed one Open since moving to the UK in 2001 and that was at Muirfield before I move to Scotland. I know Muirfield now and can therefore safely say that St. Andrews is probably the worst of the Open courses to visit as a spectator. Never mind, it is always great to be at St. A. and at the Open you might not see much golf but the atmosphere is something else.
The course looked beautiful and the wind helped to protect the Old Lady from being thrown apart.
I know lots of golfers are somewhat disappointed after playing The Old Course for the first time and fair enough, if you are only familiar with modern parkland designs I can see how you might find this course a bit odd. There are blind holes and many deep and sometimes blind bunkers too. The gorse is brutal and add to that the linksy playing conditions. I love The Old Course and would not compare this course to any other – it is a piece of history and deserves to be seen in that light. Why the 17th tee had to be moved back to the range I really don’t get – I was told it was to “force” the players to hit a driver – silly.
Unlike some years, the course was all green with not a single yellow straw of grass in sight – a shame, had the competition been 2 week earlier it would have been a whole different matter – June was dry and at least the Gullane courses were as yellow as a haystack – absolutely fantastic. The balls were bouncing all over the place and only the crispiest of short games would give you some sort of chance of putting together a decent score.
A few years back I was stunned to find the son of a very well know golf course architect giving some rather strange opinions on the presentation of one of The Open courses. The previous Open had been at Royal Liverpool and yes it had been dry and yes the course was yellow and yes Tiger was hitting irons off the tee to keep the ball under control – GREAT.
While taking part in a panel discussion the following spring which I was attending (in the US) this son of the famous golf course architect went on and on about how un-presentable the course had been – it had looked all dead and why had the R&A allowed this to happen – my jaw hit the floor! I was in shock, anyone who really appreciates links golf would prefer it this way – so I told him, politely. I don’t really care about his opinions but I was shocked at the level of obvious ignorance and more frighteningly, people listen to semi-celebrities like this thinking that they must know what they are talking about – scary.
Well it's all gone now – July has been wet so the links are green again.
Below - The Open at Royal Liverpool 2006