Alan Tait, who was one of the main driving forces behind the Optical Express Tour just under a decade ago, has come up with a new Scottish circuit for both pros and amateurs.
The ‘Get Back to Golf’ Tour swings into action next Friday and is set to provide playing opportunities for Scottish golfers through until the middle of October.
Players have a ten-day window to play an 18-hole stroke-play round at the various venues with fellow pros or amateurs with a handicap of four or better for an entry fee of £30.
The first event starts next Friday over the Craighead Links at Crail, with Tait having been encouraged by the early reaction to his attempt to do something positive for fellow Scottish golfers.
“It’s something I’ve been thinking of for a while,” he said. “It was a ‘ping’ 3am idea moment, but then the pandemic started and I also got the full-blown Covid virus myself and that was that!
“It’s been a frustrating year for all golfers, especially for our elite players who rely on tournament conditions to maintain their sharpness.
“Having played golf at a reasonable level both amateur and professional, I totally understand the need to remain competitive and to test yourself against others of a similar standard to yourself.
“With the lack of Opens, pro-ams, medals etc, I hope the players use this to keep their edge. I’ve been amazed at the response I’ve had from fellow pros and category 1 players when I ran the idea past them. Everyone loves it and are all excited to play.”
The venues and dates in full are: Crail (31 July-9 Aug); Murrayshall (10-19 Aug); Montrose Links (20-29 Aug); Duddingston (30 Aug-8 Sept); Hayston (9-18 Sept); Arbroath (19-27 Sept); Musselburgh (28 Sept-7 Oct); Longniddry (8-17 Oct).
“Every one of these clubs understand, appreciate and value the importance of top Scottish golfers playing their course and then spreading the word about the venue,” added Tait. “Ultimately, the club will benefit going forward, with increased visitor revenue and hopefully some new memberships.”
* The Scottish PGA Championship is heading back to Deer Park in Livingston after a 30-year gap. The Tartan Tour’s flagship event, which is being sponsored for the first time this year by Loch Lomond Whiskies, will be held on 1-4 September.
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