European Tour Professional Duncan Stewart – Top 5 Scottish Golf Courses!
On a Sunny October afternoon Fairways Scotland Director and PGA Professional Pete, bumped into Duncan on the practice green at Turnhouse Golf Club. They rolled in a few putts and chatted about the Tour, the game and life in general. Pete asked the man from the highlands what his 5 favourite golf courses are in Scotland. Find his top 5 below…
No. 5 – Balgownie Links course, Royal Aberdeen Golf Club
Balgownie Links, Royal Aberdeen – par 71, 6900 yards
Founded in 1780 as the Society of Golfers at Aberdeen and later renamed the Aberdeen Golf Club in 1815. The club received it’s ‘Royal’ title in 1903, granted by Edward VII. The course was originally designed by the Simpson Brothers, Archie and Robert of Carnoustie. James Braid then later re-bunkered and lengthened the course. In 2014, Royal Aberdeen Golf Club was host to the AAM Scottish Open, won by Mr Justin Rose.
Royal Aberdeen voted 9th in Scotland’s best Courses in 2017 rated by top100golfcourses.com.
No. 4 – Nairn Championship Links
Nairn Golf Club – par 72, 6721 yards
Nairn Championship is a wonderful seaside links. Founded in 1887 and created from a wilderness of heather. The opening holes stretch out along the shoreline with the turn for home at the tenth. Nairn hosted two huge Amateur events; the 2012 Curtis Cup, won by Great Britain and Ireland. Also the 1999 Walker Cup, also won by Great Britain and Ireland. The likes of Paul Casey, Luke Donald and Matt Kucher have all competed here.
Nairn Championship Links voted 20th in Scotland’s best courses in 2017 rated by top100golfcourses.com
No. 3 – Moray Golf Club (Old Lossiemouth course)
Old Lossiemouth – par 71, 6578 yards
Initially set up as 7 holes in 1875 the course extended to the full glorious 18 holes in 1890. Designed by Old Tom Morris of St Andrews, the course is set on some breath-taking land over-looking the Moray Firth. The course seems untouched, as mother nature intended it to be. Many golfers view Lossiemouth as one of Scotland’s hidden gems. In fact some even claim the Par 4 18th is one of the finest holes in Scottish Golf.
Moray Old voted 28th in Scotland’s best courses 2017 rated by top100golfcourses.com
No. 2 – Royal Dornoch Championship Links
Royal Dornoch Championship Links – par 70, 6514 yards
It is a wild course and isolated with a pure white sandy beach dividing it from the Dornoch Firth. The club has hosted golfers since 1616. The unique features of the links land have been used to create a magical golfing experience. Uttered by the locals as one of the finest golfing tests in the world. Golfing legend, Tom Watson also frequently visits and it’s easy to see why thousands of golfers each year flock to play this links.
Royal Dornoch Championship Links voted 2nd in Scotland’s best courses 2017 rated by top100golfcourses.com
No. 1 – Carnoustie Championship Links
Carnoustie Championship Links – par 72, 7143 yards
Golf has been played at Carnoustie Golf links since the early 16th century. Over the years, the course has had major modifications to make it the championship course it is today. James Braid added new bunkers, greens and tees in the 1920s to host The Open Championship in 1931. Carnoustie has also hosted the British Open seven times in total, last in 2007 and will again next year in 2018.
This course, steeped in history with hosting so many huge golfing events. Boasting British Open Winners such as Padraig Harrington, Paul Lawrie, Tom Watson and Ben Hogan. Hogan won at Carnoustie on his only appearance at The Open. Subsequently the 6th hole, ‘Hogan’s Alley’ is named after him. In all 4 tournament rounds Hogan aimed out of bounds left and faded the ball into the middle of the fairway to avoid the tricky bunkers. Leaving him in position to reach this tough par 5 in 2.
Carnoustie Golf Links voted 5th in Scotland’s best courses 2017 rated by top100golfcourses.com
What’s next for Duncan?
Looking at those courses you can see the man from Grantown-on-Spey favours the Northern Courses. But who could argue as they are all exceptional! Duncan narrowly just missed out on retaining his European Tour Card for 2018. He flies out to Spain this week to participate in Final Qualifying at Lumine Golf Club, Tarragona, Spain. Everyone at Fairways Scotland wishes Duncan the best of luck for the week ahead and look forward to seeing him back on tour again next year.
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