Craig , Michael and myself were at Pittodrie on Saturday for the Kilmarnock game. We played lovely for the first 20 mins then really struggled with some pretty poor stuff but it's still early season and TBF their still unbeaten in the league after 5 games so it's all good.
Saturday was my first home game of the season but hope to get to more games this winter
Tuesday 12th September
I was down in London playing with RSM staff and customers at Coombe Hill GC last Tuesday. I gave a short-game clinic in the morning then played one hole with each group. It was a lovely day and I was very impressed with the condition of the course at Coombe Hill. The greens are pretty small with some decent slopes which makes it short but tricky. I had a great time with everyone and hope all the golfers enjoyed their day
Sunday 3rd September
Today, we had nearly 40 kids at PLGC who had all qualified throughout the year in the under 10s and 12s flag events. As always, we had some brilliant scoring and great to see the boys and girls all playing with a smile on their faces and enjoying their golf. After the prize giving I gave a short-game clinic for all the kids and their parents which was good fun. Massive thanks to Foundation Manager, Michael Macdougall, and his assistant, Simon Hanson, for all their hard work through the season. Thank you to all the golf clubs for allowing the kids to play and of course thank you to the parents for being the taxi drivers to their Wee Angels.
Marian , Michael MacDougall and myself were down in Coatbridge on Friday to attend the funeral of former Secretary of the PGA Scottish Region, Peter Lloyd. Peter was in charge of the Region when I started to play Pro-Ams in the late eighties/early nineties. I always really enjoyed Peter's company and he was always very good to Marian and I. RIP my friend.
Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Par 3 Championship
We held the above event at our Golf Centre in Aberdeen with 54 teams - consisting of one pro and one amateur - play 36 holes over 2 days. It went extremely well with some fantastic feedback from the players. Louis Gaughan from Bathgate won in an play off against Alistair Forsyth, after both players finished on four under par. I finished in a tie for third with four other players. I struggled with an sore back and foot in first round shooting +2 but felt good yesterday shooting -5.
Massive thanks to all sponsors/players but most of all to our magnificent staff at PLGC and Clarets Coffee Shop who all worked extremely hard.
I won't play again on tour until the Portugal Masters from 21-24 September. We have the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Par 3 Championship at PLGC Ardoe on 28/29 August which should be great fun with 54 pro's and 54 amateurs playing 36 holes over the two days. Michael Campbell , Scott Jamieson and myself are playing along with some Challenge Tour , EPD and Europro players as well as the cream of the Tartan Tour. We are making a 30 minute programme which will be shown on sky sports which is great
Just home from another brilliant week at the PL Matchplay, this year in Germany. The feedback from the players was again excellent with all of them saying they'd like to see more matchplay events on tour. I did a wee bit of commentating with Sky after I got knocked out as well as some hospitality visits with the sponsors. The whole week couldn't have gone any better and was nice to see a German player in the final and great to see a first time winner who probably played the best golf for the week.
Massive thanks to everyone at 4sports, the European tour, Saltire Energy and of course Bad Griesbach Golf Resort and again many congrats to our new champ Adrian Otaegui!
Lost 2&1 this afternoon to Alejandro Canizares from Spain. I struggled early in the round to be 3 down after 8 then played some lovely golf to be 1 up after 13. I hit really poor shot off 16th tee for second day in a row to be 1 down playing 17. My foot, which wasn't good today, gave way on my tee shot at the par 3 which ended up in the water and that was the end of that. Disappointed to again go out in the second round ( every year ) but all the best to Alejandro for the rest of the week .
I flew from Edinburgh on Tuesday morning direct to Munich. It was then a 2 hour drive to golf resort Bad Griesbach. We had good fun in the pro am on Wednesday and the course is in fantastic condition.
It was a tough match yesterday but I manage to go through at the 20th against Peter Hanson.
We had our annual dinner at the Marcliffe Hotel on Monday night which was again a great night. Thanks to special guests Sam Torrance and Stephen Gallacher as well as MC, Richard Gordon, and auctioneer Alex Fleming you were all brilliant. As always, the meal was fantastic and everyone seemed to have a good time. Massive thanks to all our table sponsors and everyone who bought items on givergy and the main auction, your support is much appreciated by Marian and myself.
Michael and I went straight to Birmingham from Ohio for this weeks Farmfoods British Par 3 at Nailcotte Hall. It's always a reallygood few days but the course can be very frustrating... I shot -1 for the 27 holes which finished up 9th. Michael did really well and won the Norma C Herd Trophy which is presented to the leading amateur of the week. Craig, his brother, also won it a few years ago which is pretty cool they've now both won it. Massive thanks to Eric Herd from Farmfoods, who's support of the event is incredible.
It was nice to play in The Bridgestone invitational last week as it has been a few years since I was last there. I got in the field after winning February's Dimension Data in South Africa. I played nicely the first day but the rest of the week was a real struggle (eventually finishing +7 for the week and around 60th position). Last week was my 600th European tour appearance making me just the eighth player to reach that number, I'm extremely proud to have reached 600 and hope there will be a few more.
Aberfeldy to Pitlochry 9.5 miles
Final leg of our walk this year was from Aberfeldy to Pitlochry. It was a nice easy start along the River Tay to Grandtully and a much deserved stop at the Highland Chocolatier, Iain Burnett, which was awesome. From there, it was a steep climb over the hill to Pitlochry. Val was none to impressed with Alan and said, after eventually catching up with him, "I've come to the conclusion your a terrible husband.... Paul is always looking after Marian and Brian's always with Audrey but you just bugger off and leave me" ........Oh dear, but can't believe it's taken you this long to realise that Valerie. JK Rowling has a summer house near Aberfeldy and we were told to look out for her house. I stupidly asked what does she write about again .......what a clown. I was watching my iPad this morning before breakfast and I heard a funny noise so hit the pause.....it was Marian shouting "Help!" as she couldn't get out of the bathroom .... The thought of leaving her in there never crossed my mind......honest. Yet again we've all had a great time during our yearly walk and had some laughs along the way. Many thanks to the Reids and the Morrisons for your fantastic company!
Ardtalnaig to Aberfeldy - 14 miles
Val was on top form last night and said to the waiter "if I have 1 more gin I'm going to be wrecked ....ok I'll have a gin"..... Taxi for Valerie. Her snoring was also legendary and a room next to her from now on is a no no. Quite a steep start this morning up the hill towards Hermits Cave which was really nice. Brian swallowed a fly and was drinking a bit of water to get it to go down when Audrey grabbed it from him saying "for god sake Brian dinna drink all the water" ...... Aye Brian just choke to death !!!!!
Today was really nice walk but quite demanding with loads of ups and downs but was a really nice finishing bit at the Birks of Aberfeldy. I'm writing this from the Black Watch Inn where we're having a deserving couple of pints.
Killin to Ardtalnaig
Last night's accommodation and food was again excellent and after another big breakfast we set off on the road to our next destination.
Val is struggling with her hips, Alan is struggling with his shoulder, Marian has sore knees , shins , a blistered toe and elbows Zzzzzz, I have sore feet, Audrey has sore shoulders but Brian, the athlete, is struggling with nothing whatsoever - must be the training he did before we came !!!!
It was a very nice walk today alongside Loch Tay but it was Tarmac all the way which is hard going on the feet. We stopped for lunch at Ardeonaig Hotel which was very nice especially the two pints of east coast ipa.
We set off this morning from Strathyre after a lovely stay at the Airlie House B&B. It pretty much rained all the way but again was a really nice walk and was roughly 13 miles.
We all had rain gear, ponchos, hats and bag covers on but was again a great laugh especially when we came across a huge jobbie still steaming that even Big Innes from Still Game would have been proud of right by the side of the road - I have picture evidence but not for public viewing.
We had a pit stop at Kings House for a coffee and to dry stuff off, especially Valerie who could have easily entered a wet tee shirt comp. We are staying at the Courie Inn tonight, which is in Killin and very nice indeed.
We had a fantastic breakfast this morning at abbotsford lodge then headed off on the lovely tarred path to strathyre - only 9.5 miles today which was a nice gentle opener.
We had a stop at Forest Cabins Cafe and even managed a wee peroni around 11am. Very boring today with nothing funny to report but it was a very nice walk in perfect weather.
Rob Roy Way - Day 1
We drove to Pitlochry to have lunch and leave the cars at Fonab Hotel, as that's where we will finish on Saturday. We jumped on the 4.17pm train to Stirling followed by a taxi to Callander. Our first night's accommodation last night was the superb Abbotsford Lodge where the landlady's accent was a cross between Mary Doll and Haotong Li....but couldn't have done more to help and is without doubt the best guest house we've ever stayed in and even Audrey finished her porridge which to my knowledge hasn't ever happened before....sorry Audrey !
This week is always one of my favourite weeks of the year. Royal birkdale is one of the very best in the world and again it did not disappoint. I shot 70 on Thursday which was disapointing as I hit it really nice but missed quite a few short putts. Right from the off on Friday I was poor and ended up shooting 79 which is so disapointing but I really struggled and didn't deserve any less. We managed to get a flight home on Friday night as its always good to get straight home after missing a cut. I felt pretty close on Thursday but miles away on Friday who ever said this game is frustrating knew what he was on about. Congrats to Jordan Spieth who is the Champion Golfer of the Year. As always, The Open Championship was a huge success. Thanks to the many volunteers who work very hard all week.
Had my first look at Royal Birkdale this morning and was very impressed with the course. The whole place is looking awesome and you would be hard pressed to find a better lay out anywhere. We played with young Scottish amateur Connor Syme who looks the real deal to me and also a lovely lad. Michael and I have rented an apartment in Birkdale Village, which is only 5 mins from the course, which is handy.