Reasons to love The Open Championship

Published 15/07/2009 12:23:42

The Open Championship is the oldest major in golf. Referred to in America as "The British Open", most others know it simply as "The Open". There's just something so grand about the original tournament of golf, originally competed by a narrow field of just 8 Scottish golfers. It's tough but it's full of history. If you strike the ball well, you're probably going to be in the running come Sunday.


Here's why we think The Open is the greatest major in golf.


The Weather

The weather? Surely that's the worst thing about "the British"? Wrong!

Coastal courses always give unpredictable conditions. The only certainty is that no-one will be able to predict what it'll be like and when it will change. Holes can play entirely differently depending on how the wind is blowing. Us Brits know how fickle it can be - and we like to moan about it at every opportunity.

Then there's the rain - there's usually a downpour at The Open but that's part of the fun. If you want perfect conditions then go play in a driving range - this is about being exposed to the elements and proving you're a match for them.


It's a true open championship

The ethos of the tournament has always been "if you qualify, you can play". That hasn't changed and there's something about this attitude we love. It's almost at odds with the snobbery and elitism so typically associated with golf.


You can't pick a winner

Look at the past winners of The Open - sure Tiger's got 3, so has Jack. But for every one of those there's a Paul Lawrie, Ben Curtis or Todd Hamilton. It's about who brings their A-game on the day - and who adapts to whatever the weather, deep rough or rolling hills throws at them.


Few players have dominated The Open - and that's just the way we like it.



The first major played by a few Scots on a hill, 138 years later we're all talking about it. It gave birth to the game and for that we should be thankful.

Imagine playing the 18th at Turnberry, looking at the hotel, thinking "What did Jack feel here in '77?". Or playing Royal Liverpool and trying to emulate Tiger's razor-sharp iron play - then a few tears just for fun.

Old Tom Morris and the boys sure did get things right, didn't they?


Links courses

The Open is always played at a links golf course. Links courses are unique and fabulous tests of a golfer's skill. They are what golf was designed to be played on and truly push golfers to their limit.

Just look at some of the courses on the rotation - Turnberry, Birkdale, St Andrews - the list goes on. All of these courses are rated some of the top in the world.


1.  I'm glad you've referred to it as "Open" as I do so hate the Americanism of calling it "The British". Factually true but historically moot!

comment by Alex Wooldford - 03/07/2012 10:17

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