• Scottish Open Stroke Play Championship tees of next Friday
• Six-week programme of changes has been welcomed at the club
MORAY GOLF CLUB
Moray Golf Club has released details of a series of course improvements that have been made ahead of the Carrick Neill Scottish Open Stroke Play Championship.
The changes at the renowned Scottish links, which includes the redevelopment of 24 bunkers, the introduction of three new bunkers and the removal of four, will provide a stunning backdrop for the SGU flagship event and were devised to enhance the much-loved routing of the Old Course, which was first laid out by Old Tom Morris in 1889.
Along with new tees and an ongoing gorse control programme, the six-week programme of improvements has been universally welcomed at the club.
“I am extremely proud of the work carried out by the greens staff over the winter programme,” explained John Thomson, captain of Moray GC. “They have shown what can be achieved without having to break the bank. Their knowledge of reconstructing bunkers, building tees and managing the gorse around Moray is second to none and that makes them a valuable asset to the club.
"We expect a high standard of golf in the quest to lift the trophy" - David Somerville
Daniel Sommerville, events manager at the SGU, said: “We are looking forward to a great tournament at Moray. The Old Course offers a true championship test and we think all the players will enjoy the challenge. This year’s event boasts another strong, international field and, in a Walker Cup year, we expect a high standard of golf in the quest to lift the trophy.”
Moray GC is one of the most admired links courses in Scotland and was most recently among the climbers in Golf World’s Top 100 Scottish golf courses, jumping three places to No.34. It was described by the panel as an ‘absolute gem’ and ‘a hugely underrated course’.
For new courses manager Kevin Thomson, the programme of works has been particularly satisfying, especially the most significant change which involved swapping the 12th tee on the Old Course for the 12th tee on the New Course, which was designed by Henry Cotton.
“From our point of view, these projects are brilliant,” he said. “The tee-swapping was a huge job because we had to move paths and build new tees. When we stripped everything back, it looked like a bomb had gone off. It was only when things started to take shape that the golfers could see what was going on.
"It was a great project to work on and what has made it especially satisfying is the positive feedback from the members" - Kevin Thomson
“They’ve made the courses harder for better players and easier for less experienced players. It was a great project to work on and what has made it especially satisfying is the positive feedback from the members.”
The course changes will influence most of the 36 holes at Moray GC but will in particular affect the fifth, eighth, 11th and 12th holes of the Old Course and the 12th on the New Course.
The stellar field assembled for next week’s Carrick Neill Scottish Open Stroke Play Championship will be among the first to test out the new-look Moray, with the players looking to join former Ryder Cup captains Bernard Gallacher and Colin Montgomerie and current European Tour stars Stephen Gallacher and Richie Ramsay as winners of the competition.
Moray Golf Club :: Changes
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