Nov 18th, 2016
Dundonald Links to host men’s & ladies Scottish Opens
In ground-breaking LPGA & LET co–sanctioned deal
Words: John Dean
A ground-breaking co-sanctioning agreement between the LET and LPGA has been reached that will see Dundonald Links host both the 2017 men’s and ladies’ Scottish Opens.
The Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open will also be elevated to the highest prize fund event on the Ladies European Tour outside the Majors.
The initial three-year deal, brought together by the LET and the LPGA in partnership with title sponsor, Aberdeen Asset Management and key partner, VisitScotland, will see the event transition from a Pro-Am format to an individual stroke-play event with a strong field and global media exposure.
With a full 156–strong player field and a prize fund of US$1.5m, the enhanced 72–hole Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open will sit on both the LET and LPGA schedules and underlines Scotland’s commitment to growing women’s golf as it looks towards hosting The 2019 Solheim Cup at Gleneagles.
It also draws on the strong support of Aberdeen Asset Management across all levels of the game, giving equal prominence to both men and women whilst helping to ensure live footage from both the men’s and ladies Scottish Open’s is shared with golf fans around the world.
Taking place the week before the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Kingsbarns in 2017, the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open will kick off a superb two weeks of links golf in Scotland. The back-to-back stretch of events echoes the successful strategy employed by the men’s Scottish Open taking place the week before The Open – an approach proven to be a competitive advantage for those players competing in both championships.
The men’s and ladies’ Scottish Open’s will be played at the same venue within a three-week period for the first time in Scottish Open history - a great accolade for the Kyle Phillips designed course at Dundonald Links in Scotland.
Paul Bush, Director of Events with VisitScotland, said: “The huge success of the men’s Scottish Open taking place the week before The Open provided the inspiration for us to achieve similar success with the Ladies Scottish Open ahead of the Ricoh Women’s British Open and these outstanding two weeks will now rival anything the world of golf has to offer. This historic agreement underlines Scotland’s commitments to women’s golf as we look forward to The 2019 Solheim Cup and I would like to pay tribute to both the LET and the LPGA, alongside our partners at Aberdeen Asset Management, for the vision to make this a reality.”
Without wishing to rain on anyone's parade, there is talk that Phil Mickelson won't be coming to Dundonald Links as he doesn't want to have to learn a new layout. And there are noises that Rory is also doubtful. But at least they will definitely have the in form Alex Noren, who will want to defend his title.