Sandy Lyle to Compete in World Hickory Open At Panmure
On Tuesday, October 7, top British golfer Sandy Lyle MBE will be amongst the 100 golfers teeing off in the first round of the World Hickory Open, which is being played on one of Carnoustie Country’s top golf courses – Panmure Medal.
“I’ve been playing hickory golf for close on three years,” said Sandy Lyle, who was the first British winner of the Masters. “I am really looking forward to playing in the World Hickory Open at Panmure.”
The World Hickory Open 2014 is one of the main events in this year’s Carnoustie Country Festival of Golf and will be played over two days by a field of over 100 hickory golfers from across the globe. “We are absolutely delighted to be joined by a golfer of Sandy Lyle’s calibre,” said World Hickory Open founder and director, Lionel Freedman, who explained that the hickory golfers will have a warm up round at Forfar on Monday, October 6 in preparation for the tournament on Tuesday and Wednesday.
“The majority of competitors will be playing with pre-1935 golf clubs,” continued Lionel, who added that, in keeping with the traditional ethos of the tournament, most of the competitors will be wearing golf clothing reminiscent of the hickory era.
“For a few of the competitors, this will be their first time playing golf using hickories, while others are highly experienced hickory golfers. But whether novice or expert, they all share a common bond – a passion for golf in its truest form, which they will certainly experience when they play Panmure, widely considered to be one of the top 100 courses in the world.”
This is the third consecutive year the World Hickory Open has been held in Carnoustie Country, which covers 34 courses within a 40-mile drive of Carnoustie Championship. Since 2012, Monifieth Links, Montrose Links and now Panmure have welcomed the World Hickory Open, with many competitors returning year after year, including American hickory golfer Mike Stevens.
“The World Hickory Open is a first rate tournament in every aspect and is the trip I look forward to the most each year,” said Mike, who has been playing hickory golf for 15 years. “It’s always wonderful to see so many old friends, meet new friends and be in one of my favourite places in all the world – Carnoustie Country. To walk on courses where golf has been played for hundreds of years and to play as they did all those years ago is beyond description.”
The tournament is for amateur and professional golfers and this year, thanks to sponsorship from The World Golf Teachers Federation, a prize fund of £3,000 is on offer.
“We believe teaching professionals, as ambassadors to the game, should have a keen sense of – and appreciation for – the history of our game,” explained Geoff Bryant, President of the United States Golf Teachers Federation. “Hickory golf takes us back in time, enabling us to experience how the game was originally played and actually ‘feel’ the implements used by those who preceded the modern era of golf.
“Having occasionally played hickory golf, I know that what makes this version of the game extra special is the camaraderie between hickory golfers, who share a love for the history and traditions of the game.”