New Medal Presented to Knost

Colt Knost (pictured holding the US Amateur Trophy) was finally presented with the Mark H McCormack Medal identifying him as the world?s leading amateur golfer of 2007 at his home club in Dallas, Texas this week.

After receiving the medal from Todd McCormack, son on the late founder of the International Management Group (IMG), Knost said: ?I am delighted to be the first winner of this award, and to receive it at my home club is something special. It is the perfect way to sign off my amateur career.?

?Colt is worthy winner of this, the first Mark H McCormack medal awarded by The R&A, and I am sure he will go on to have a long and successful career in the game that my father lived to promote,? said McCormack.

Open Championship Entry Change

The R&A has announced a number of alterations to the entry criteria for the 2008 Open Championship at Royal Birkdale.

The majority of these concern Amateur entrants, in particular the decision to hand the runners-up in The Amateur, US Amateur and European Amateur Championship a guaranteed place in Final Qualifying. The same applies for the leading ten non-exempt players in the World Amateur Golf Rankings.

Also – for the professionals – the highest placed non-exempt player in the top five and ties at the AT&T National, John Deere Classic, European Open and Barclays Scottish Open will be rewarded with direct entry into the field attempting to take Padraig Harrington?s crown.

Meanwhile, the R&A have announced that Littlestone, Prince?s and Royal Cinque will host Local Final Qualifying Events for the 2011 Open Championship at Royal St. George?s.

Wentworth at centre of new bursary scheme

The world famous Wentworth Club has joined forces with the Royal Holloway, University of London to provide outstanding facilities for two students showing exceptional golfing talent.

Royal Holloway has been providing financial and academic support to talented individuals over a range of sports for the last decade and its new link with the Wentworth Club looks promising for young golfers.

Wentworth, after all, has been the driving force behind similar schemes for local youngsters. Ross Fisher was one such player and he rose to prominence in 2007 after securing his maiden European Tour title with victory at the KLM Open.

Professor Stephen Hill, Principal of Royal Holloway said: “We are delighted to have teamed up with one of the world’s leading golf clubs. Our student golfers will benefit enormously from having access to such high quality facilities and these bursaries will help them progress to compete at the highest level both during their studies and beyond.”

“This is a great way to develop the golf talent of the successful candidate and gives them exposure to the Wentworth standard of club and golfing excellence,? added Julian Small, Managing Director of The Wentworth Club.

Seniors Open on the move

The Ryder Cup Wales Seniors Open is set to visit new venues over the next three years as organisers attempt to show off the nation?s golf to the world.

For the second successive year, the 2008 event will be played out over the Caernarvonshire Golf Club layout with big names such as Ian Woosnam and Sandy Lyle set to make their European Seniors Tour debuts in the principality. The tournament will then be moved to the links of Royal Porthcawl until 2010 before a new, as yet undecided, venue will take over.

From coal to hole

A former opencast colliery at Polkemmot is being transformed into a residential area featuring two championship golf courses.

The site in Scotland is undergoing this re-generation with the help of WRAP (Waste & Resources Action Programme) that will see more than 150,000 tonnes of compost dropped onto the Ecosse Regeneration owned area.

?Compost provides an excellent balance of water and nutrient retention properties when mixed with screened colliery shale. The new soil will also be sufficiently free-draining to ensure that the golf courses remain playable under the wettest of conditions, which is most important given the local climate,? said Ecosse Regeneration Project Manager Alex Muirhead.