Castle Stuart toughens up for Scottish Open

2016 03 Getty Images 173270913
• Castle Stuart to toughen up ahead of the Scottish Open
• New bunkers have been created on the par-5 sixth hole
• Greater amount of rough and new fairway lines adopted too


Castle Stuart Golf Links is undergoing some changes to toughen up the course as it prepares to welcome some of the best players in the world this summer for the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open.

Phil Mickelson, Henrik Stenson and Graeme McDowell are among the players who have already signed up for the event, with the former hoping to repeat his success of 2013 at the Highland venue, where he then went on to win the Open Championship at Muirfield – his most recent professional win.

As far as the changes go, two new bunkers have been created at 320 yards on the 560-yard par-5 sixth hole to give players a new strategic challenge, while areas of rough have been bulked out and new fairway lines adopted on holes six, seven and 18 to further tighten the course.


Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open - Day Four

“The new bunkers on the sixth hole will come into play for golfers playing with an easterly wind,” said course manager Chris Haspell. “It will also narrow the fairway to 25-27 yards, so it will give them a new challenge.

“It will still be a two-shot hole for them but the second shot will be a long iron now into a tricky green so they will have to think more strategically. The other changes will bring new tests for all players and, in some cases, make them alter the way they play these holes.”

Rory McIlroy announced that he wouldn’t be playing the Scottish Open in Inverness-shire this year, continuing his stance of skipping the venue after not playing there between 2011-13 but playing at Royal Aberdeen in 2014, while he was also supposed to be playing at Gullane last year until he sustained the ankle ligament injury which also caused him to miss the Open Championship at St Andrews.


Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open - Day Three

“It’s not that Castle Stuart is too easy,” the former world No.1 told back in 2014. “It’s just not a true links course. I mean, how long has it been there? Five years?”

One player who can’t wait to return to Castle Stuart though is US-based Scot Russell Knox, who grew up playing at nearby Nairn Dunbar before heading across to the States.

“It’s a dream come true to play the Scottish Open at Castle Stuart,” he said. “I can’t wait to go to the Masters this year - that is the tournament I think we all dream about playing - but for me, going home to play the Scottish Open at Castle Stuart is giving me a similar feeling.”

Castle Stuart :: Are changes a good thing?

What do you make of the changes to Castle Stuart ahead of the Scottish Open? Leave your thoughts in the 'Comments' section below.

Share this Article

twitter-logo facebook-logo

Latest Videos See all videos right arrow

play button
TITLEIST TOUR SPEED – Better than the Pro V1???
play button
Golf Lessons
play button
TaylorMade MG2 TW Grind Wedges – Tiger Woods’ secret short game weapon
play button
A simple drill for perfect timing | IMG Academy
Golf Lessons
See all videos right arrow

Golf News

Nine-year-old to tackle golf marathon for charity
Patrick Reed leads at halfway stage of US Open
US Open 2020: Round 3 tee times
Robert MacIntyre stages back nine salvo to make US Open cut
Tiger Woods leads big-name casualties as cut falls at US Open

Other Top Stories

Tiger Woods: Inside his $41million Florida mansion
The very best pubs in St Andrews
The Scottish Golf Course Emoji Quiz!
24 lies every bad golfer tells
Doug Sanders: The extraordinary life of golf's original playboy

Quick Fault 'n' Fixes See all videos right arrow

play button
Use your height to maximum effect
play button
Even the right grip change can feel strange
play button
A simple drill to increase your shoulder turn
play button
A bad grip will lead to bad swings
See all videos right arrow