The British Open at Royal Portrush was a resounding success last week, not only because Shane Lowry took the claret home or the fantastic and majestic course but the atmosphere and support for the event was unbelievable!
It was first time Royal Portrush hosted the event in sixty eight years but by all accounts it certainly won’t be that long again. When the deal was signed, Royal Portrush were guaranteed to host the event three times in thirty years however the event could be back as early as 2024.
Next year’s Open will be staged at Royal St.George with the 150th Open at St.Andrews the following year. In 2022, Royal Liverpool will host and it is expected that Muirfield will host the following year.
If St.Andrews gets it normal rotation in 2025 then it will disqualify a Scottish venue from hosting it the year previous so it could mean Royal Portrush is in with a great chance to hold it in 2024. It will face stiff competition from Lytham but with the overwhelming scenes witnessed at Portrush, the Northern Ireland venue may just have the edge.
Portrush native, 39 year-old Graeme McDowell has urged his golfing peers to rate it the best links championship venue, he told the media “”The players just love the golf course, they feel like it’s the best links course they’ve ever seen.”
In fact a number of golfers made very positive comments about the event with Tiger Woods saying “”I just think that this venue, it’s just amazing it’s been this long that it’s taken for us to come back here. It’s such a great venue.
“Everyone who’s played it, whether it’s guys who grew up here or people who have come up here and just have played, they’ve always enjoyed it. They’ve always enjoyed playing this golf course
“And I can understand why. It’s straightforward. It is tricky a little bit here and there, but overall it’s just a wonderful links golf course.”
Jordan Speith commented on the event saying “”It was amazing, I hope it’s on the rotation. I enjoyed the golf course. It played tough and fair.
“In the town itself, the people were top-notch. This tournament they always are. Here and Augusta are my two favourite events in the entire world, and it never disappoints. And it didn’t here. It was awesome.”
Mc Dowell admitted that he heard that the R&A may take the Open back to Portrush in the near future saying “”I’ve heard the whispers that we could be back here as soon as five years from now,” said McDowell.
“The financial commitment Portrush have made to this, for it to get the recognition and get back here soon, and keep that Portrush train rolling, it would be huge.”
It remains to be seen when Royal Portrush will be hosting the Open again but one thing is for sure, the people of Ireland will never forget 2019!
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