As some of the world’s top players were out trying to master the Gullane greens, a new book that aims to make putting easier for players of all levels was being launched at the East Lothian venue.
‘The Lost Art of Putting’ has been produced by Gary Nicol, a renowned coach now based at Archerfield Links, and Dr Karl Morris, pictured, one of the top performance coaches in the game. “While we are not dismissing technique, people are trying to be someone else when they are putting,” said Morris, who helped Louis Oosthuizen win the 2010 Open with a “red-dot” stratetgy. “People are drowning in information and this book is aimed at getting them connected back to the natural way of putting.”
The foreword has been written by Paul Lawrie, who attended the launch. “The common thread in playing well is good putting,” he said. “I’ve struggled with my putting over the years when I’ve got too technical. The only event I won not putting well was the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles in 2012. I hit it so well from tee to green.”
The first-day hole flags were a little different from normal, with a series of different maths calculations that equated to the corresponding hole replacing the standard 1 to 18 numbering.
The calculations were the result of a competition run by Aberdeen Standard Investments as part of the Scottish Government’s “Making Maths Count” programme and some of the winning young number crunchers got to meet Paul Lawrie on a visit to Gullane.
“The Maths on Flags initiative highlights the importance and prevalence of maths in everyday life in a way that is fun and engaging, and I’m delighted to be able to see the results today,” said Minister for Business, Fair Work and Skills, Jamie Hepburn.
Gullane member Jill McNicoll enjoyed a day to remember in the pro-am event as she recorded her first hole-in-one. Playing in a group that had former Masters champion Trevor Immelman as the pro, the two-time East Lothian champion made her ace at the 12th, which normally plays as the 13th. “Words can’t describe how much I loved today,” she wrote on Twitter afterwards.