After a good night’s rest, I was up early in the morning, awakened by the squawking of sea gulls. That seems to be a daily occurrence around 4:30 a.m.Our lodging accommodations in
The sinks have separate hot and cold spigots, so when I shave, I try to evenly distribute water in the sink. The hot water here is scalding. You can actually use tap water to brew a cup of instant coffee in the morning. It’s that hot.
There are seven rooms in the house where we stay. Four are occupied by the PGA of America and three by local residents. As I left the house this morning with golf shoes in hand, I was asked by a Scottish gentleman if I was going out for “a knock.”
Looking puzzled and my mind wandering to what he might mean, I asked, “What is a knock?”
To which he replied, “Golf.”
So, we headed to Dundonald Links for a knock with the British PGA.
The trip to Dundonald was crazy. We got lost and the GPS malfunctioned, so it was another wacky driving experience in
Dundonald Links is a typical Scottish course with fescue rough and pot bunkers as the predominant driving obstacles. The early-morning weather was stellar, with bright sunny skies and little wind. The temperature reached 70 degrees, and the wind stayed down.
This course had very undulated greens, and the fairway bunkers were strategically placed in the landing areas. These bunkers were more penal than those at Royal Troon. If the ball was in the
bunker, it was a definite sand wedge to get out. In some cases the shot had to be hit sideways to escape the steep faces.
On Tuesday we were told by the locals that Dundonald Links is one of the toughest courses in
The Scot Rail runs alongside Dundonald. This is the same train that passed Troon on Tuesday, making the hourly round trip from
Located on the other side of the railroad tracks was a course called
Today was an opportunity for us, as PGA leaders, to spend time with our British counterparts. Following golf, we had a couple of hours to discuss pertinent issues relating to the golf industry and both associations.
One topic of discussion, sure to be receiving worldwide exposure, is the possibility of adding golf to the competition at the Summer Olympics in 2016. British oddsmakers will take bets on the likelihood that this will happen. The conventional wisdom in the golf industry is that golf probably will be added to the Olympics.
The format of play will be 72 holes of stroke play. Sixty players would comprise the field, which will be filled by the World Golf Rankings. The biggest twist is that a country like the
On Wednesday we headed to Turnberry for a reception with the British PGA. Then it was on to another reception and dinner with the Royal and Ancient Golf Association later in the evening.
Today will be our last round of golf before the Open Championship occupies the rest of our week. Our destination in the morning will be Prestwick Golf Club, site of the first Open Championship in 1860, won by Willie Park. This is truly one of golf’s sacred venues, and it promises to be memorable.
The Open Championship tees off at 6:30 a.m. Scottish time today and Friday. This is golf’s largest field, and the final tee times each day are slated for 4:30 p.m.
I look forward to walking the course and reporting on the tournament.
Ted Bishop is director of golf for The Legends of Indiana Golf Course in Franklin and secretary for PGA of America. He is in
the British Open.
Photo Caption: After a good night’s rest, I was up early in the morning, awakened by the squawking of sea gulls. That seems to be a daily occurrence around 4:30 a.m.
Our lodging accommodations in