A SPECIALLY commissioned tartan has been designed to mark the hosting of next year’s Ryder Cup in Scotland.
The golf tournament between Europe and the US will be held at Gleneagles, Perthshire, in September 2014.
The tartan was made by Lochcarron of Scotland and has four shades of blue, inspired by the Scottish landscape, white trim to represent the Scottish Saltire and gold thread to reflect the stars on the European flag, the manufacturer said.
It was created with the input of European team captain Paul McGinley and was unveiled by Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond and tournament director Richard Hills at the Lochcarron of Scotland mill in Selkirk, Borders, today.
The tartan will be made into kilts, scarves and ties for sale to fans and they are likely to be worn by players before the tournament.
Golf fan Mr Salmond, who said last week that he will not be attending this year’s Open Championship at Muirfield, East Lothian, because of the club’s men-only membership, was delighted to see the tartan.
He said: “Tartan’s importance to Scotland cannot be overestimated. It is deeply embedded in Scottish culture and is an internationally recognised symbol of Scotland, therefore this beautiful tartan is the perfect way for the Ryder Cup to celebrate its return to the home of golf.
“Next year’s Ryder Cup at Gleneagles is going to bring enormous economic benefit to Scotland and it’s estimated that the tournament will add up to £100 million to Scotland’s economy, supporting people, businesses and the surrounding communities.
“As one of the world’s largest sporting events, the Ryder Cup is broadcast to 183 countries worldwide reaching more than half a billion homes each day of the competition, truly making this event Scotland’s moment to shine.”
About 250,000 spectators are expected to descend on the Perthshire area for the event and 1,800 people have been selected to fill roles such as scoreboard carriers, safety marshals and buggy drivers at the Gleneagles course.
Mr McGinley said: “I’m delighted with the final design of the official Ryder Cup tartan and very honoured that my input was sought in the overall procedure.
“While it was obviously important that the tartan was uniquely Scottish to reflect the host nation of the 2014 Ryder Cup, I also wanted it to illustrate the continent of Europe that we will all be representing at Gleneagles next September, and I think we have done that superbly with the subtle blending of the blue and gold of the European flag.”
Lochcarron of Scotland was established in 1947 and famous designers including Vivienne Westwood and Ralph Lauren have worked with the mill.
The contract for the tartan is the first to be awarded by Ryder Cup Europe since its procurement process for the 2014 event began.
Daniel Kim, chief executive of Lochcarron of Scotland, said: “We are really excited to be involved in such a huge sporting event coming to Scotland.
“We have paid careful attention to ensure the design reflects the unique quality and drama of the most treasured trophy in golf while still paying close tribute to the Scottish heritage behind the game.”