Opinion: Donald Trump can only be good for Turnberry

The Donald 's helicopter at Turnberry
The Donald 's helicopter at Turnberry

Having spent significant time in Donald Trump’s company this week I believe that the American tycoon can only be a good thing for his newly named Trump Turnberry resort.

There can be no doubting that the billionaire American tycoon is what Scots people would affectionately call a ‘character’.

Donald Trump and golf course architect Martin Ebert survey the Ailsa course

Donald Trump and golf course architect Martin Ebert survey the Ailsa course

Whilst he has faults, like we all do, the American’s takeover and investment is massive news for the Carrick area and should be welcomed with open arms.

What Donald Trump brings to the resort is a worldwide brand name as well as a fistful of money and a love of golf. The Trump Turnberry resort is in need of change if it is to stay in front of its competitors in the West Coast of Scotland such as Royal Troon and Prestwick and other golfing paradises across the country like St Andrews and Carnoustie.

There can be no doubting Mr Trump is a golf fan. He now owns 17 golf courses/resorts across the world and takes pride in upgrading them to the highest standards. If you want evidence of that, check out the massive revamp he made of Doral in Miami which hosts a World Golf Championship each year. Those sort of changes are the stuff of dreams and the plans he has for Turnberry’s Ailsa Course will fully utilise the fantastic coastline. Turnberry’s Ailsa Course has hosted four fantastic Open Championships in its time. Most notably of course in 1977 when Tom Watson beat Jack Nicklaus in the ‘Duel in the Sun’ which is widely recognised as one of the greatest golf matches of all time.

Watson almost won again at Turnberry in 2009 at the age of 59, but suffered the agony of a play-off defeat to Stewart Cink. Factor in Greg Norman’s win in 1986 and Nick Price’s in 1994 and you see that Opens at Turnberry only cater for the very best golfers.

And a Trump Turnberry Open Championship would continue that. Some whispers suggest that Trump’s takeover might take the course off The Open rota but I’d be very surprised if that happened.

Of course every Open Championship course is of a world class standard but there are none better than the Ailsa Course at Turnberry when the sun is shining. It provides a truly majestic spectacle for spectators in attendance.

And can you imagine the build-up? Trump is the master of getting publicity for himself and the plans he is investing in. You only needed to be at the press conference this week in the 1906 restaurant to see that. Everyone in the media was keen to hear what Donald Trump had to say and that would multiple many times over with Trump promoting golf’s greatest championship.

Next years Women’s Open at Trump Turnberry also promises to be a spectacular affair and the next year will surely see Trump and his associates make sure the word gets out about that tournament as much as possible.

And as for the hotel it is great that Donald is putting his son Eric in charge of the £100m revamp. Trump’s hotel buildings are renowned all over the world and the ambition he has for Trump Turnberry is to be admired.

With all due respect to previous owners LeisureCorp, Trump is someone people know. And now he is investing in Turnberry and Carrick. There is sure to be a knock on effect with tourists, particularly Americans coming over to play a Trump inspired course.

The finished article at the resort promises to be superb. I personally can’t wait to see the changes.