The course hasn't hosted the tournament since 2009 when Stewart Cink beat Tom Watson in a playoff
Is Turnberry Still On The Open Rota?
Royal Portrush hosts the Open Championship this month for the first time in 68 years, with St George’s hosting next year for the first time in nine years, St Andrews in 2021 for the first time in six years and Royal Liverpool in 22 for the first time in eight years.
St Andrews usually hosts every five years but the average gap between hosting for the other venues tends to be between 8-12 years.
However, there is one course that hasn’t held an Open Championship for 10 years and it still doesn’t have a date penciled in. And it’s arguably the best of the lot.
The Ailsa course hosted the tournament in 2009 when Stewart Cink defeated Tom Watson in a playoff after the 59-year-old five-time Open champion bogeyed the 72nd hole.
Turnberry is a much better course now than back then thanks to some phenomenal upgrades after the 2015 Women’s British Open.
Martin Ebert changed a number of holes including those around the famous lighthouse, with a stunning new par-3 9th playing directly next to it along the rocky coastline.
It saw the course elevated to number one in Golf Monthly’s UK and Ireland Top 100 course rankings for 2017/18 and 2019/20.
But is it still on the rota?
“We have 10 courses that we look to stage the Open Championship on, of which Turnberry is one of them,” R&A Chief Executive Martin Slumbers confirmed in a conference call with journalists last year.
That was after the announcement that Hoylake was going to be the venue in 2022, hosting again after 2014.
That made some question why Turnberry wasn’t hosting, but Slumbers confirmed that having the Open in Scotland two years in a row isn’t “sensible commercially.”
“Turnberry will be in consideration for 2023, but it’s not a rota,” he said.
“We look at all the issues in the round, but Turnberry remains as one of the 10 courses where we could stage the Open Championship.”
Muirfield was briefly taken off of the rota in 2016 after the club’s Honourable Company of Edinburgh Golfers voted against allowing female members, but then both Muirfield and the R&A reversed their decisions.
Turnberry has never been taken off of the rota, but it is owned by the President of the United States so that can only be the reason for its exclusion, you’d think.
Either way, the Ailsa course looks set to host in 2023 considering that the Open will return to Scotland after Liverpool in 2022 and Troon, Muirfield, St Andrews and Carnoustie will have all hosted much more recently than Turnberry in 2009.
14 years after its last Open, it does look like we’ll see Turnberry’s fifth Open Championship in 2023.
Let’s hope anyway!
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