Hello Again Everyone –
The past two days have been spectacular at Royal Birkdale and Royal Lytham & Saint Annes. Birkdale is only about 10 minutes from the hotel, and guess what… we had sun!
Birkdale is well-known for being a staple in the Open rota with notable past champions like Tom Watson, Johny Miller, Lee Trevino, Arnold Palmer and Jordan Spieth.
When you play the course, it’s easy to see why it is dubbed for championship golf – the holes are long and demanding with tall sand dunes framing many of the holes.
They make for amphitheater environments for fans.
The clubhouse at Birkdale is also iconic. It has an “art deco” style and was constructed in 1935.
“The Concession” occurred here when Jack Nicklaus conceded a short putt to Tony Jacklin in the 1969 Ryder Cup’s deciding match to halve the overall competition.
The ladies in our group, Dorothy Wasinger and Nancy Thomas, dominated the scoring at Birkdale with good drives and great putting.
Couples joined up for dinner around town, many finding the Sparrow Hawk to be a local favorite, and others took the train into Liverpool to visit the Beatles old stomping grounds, the Cavern Club.
Early this morning we were up and headed to Royal Lytham & Saint Annes, about 70 minutes by bus. Lytham has hosted 10 Opens and two Ryder Cups, so we were all eager for the challenge. The main feature to stand out at Lytham is the bunkering – plentiful, deep and well-placed.
If a golfer must take a cart to play, the club requires a caddy to drive the cart due to the liability and danger of the bunkers!
Lytham is overall a flatter property than some we have played, but the wind was up and penalties for shots off line were sever.
It’s easy to see why the Slope Ratings on many courses on this trip are 140+.
Jim Kohl and Dick Wunderlich took the team match by one point over Dan and Nancy Thomas today.
We all eagerly await results in the club pub post-round each day.
The group is excited for the final round tomorrow at Hillside which has been said by Greg Norman to have “the best back nine in England.”
Sounds like a great way to cap a fabulous week.
Hit ‘em straight!