On the Fairways

Johnny Miller, with the Open championship in 1976. Source: The Times.
Johnny Miller, with the Open championship in 1976. Source: The Times.

With spring arriving at last the Girvan ladies have taken full advantage of the weather and on 22nd. April went out to compete in the Jenny Robb Trophy which brought in Roz McCulloch as winner on nett 70 followed by Jill Bone 73 and Susan Low 74. On 30th. April in the Girvan Ladies Arran Rosebowl competition Cecilia Finan came in to win on 35 Stableford points followed by Moira McAlpine 31 and Sandra Deeney 30 points.

Over at Turnberry the members competed for the Saturday medal on 25th. April with Martin Brown coming in to win on (21)71 followed by Darwin Johnstone (5)72, Ian Walker (11)75 with Steven Stamper, Billy McCulloch and Quintin Dunlop all on nett 76.

The Turnberry members Bob Adamson Trophy for 7 clubs only was competed for on 2nd. May bringing in Clive Douglas (5)73 followed by Michael Whiteford (20)74, John McMillan (8)76 Jack Galloway (9)78 and Steven Stamper (+1)78


Johnny Miller on the practice ground ‘Here we are making thousands of dollars a year and we’re still trying to change our swings’.

Jim Bishop in a syndicated column 1970 ‘HOOK: the addiction of 50% of all golfers.

SLICE: the weakness of the other half.’ That says it all, now decide which of these you are.


I read with great interest about the golf course at Machrie on Islay which has been re-designed to accommodate the type of golfer who relies on skill rather than brute strength and a lob wedge. It is under the direction of former European tour player D.J. Russell who has installed holes where a bump and run by a four iron is more efficacious than say a chip with an 8 iron. It will be a course designed for the game as it used to be with low running shots which may seem old fashioned to some, but more skill and fun for the ordinary amateur, particularly the golden oldies who remember when that form of play was normal in Scotland.. Russell feels that the days of the present course designers who think of the distance where Rory McIlroy or other big hitting professionals drives will finish and then make it difficult from there, are limited. There is little future in that attitude as golf courses will certainly not attract the majority of ordinary golfers if they become too difficult to play and take too long to play round. We need courses which attracted the skilful player the likes of Lee Trevino and Seve Ballesteros who managed to get round courses by using their brain rather than their muscle to run up good scores. I can remember when the Machrie course attracted a lot of visitors with a plane leaving from Glasgow airport early in the morning full of golfers and their equipment and returning to Glasgow late in the evening. Those were the days and no doubt they could well come back again to play on the completely re-designed course with 18 high quality holes on a very attractive site.

I am glad to realize that others seem to share my views, as this constant lengthening and tricking up of championship courses will not, to my mind, attract people to take up the game and then where will the future tour professionals come from.. However there are enough good courses in Scotland to attract the ordinary golfer who wishes to get around the course in a reasonable time.

*FOOTBALL Well Well the great unexpected happened last Saturday as I do not think anyone expected Ayr United and Stirling Albion to both win. This means of course that I will be able to sit in the stand at Somerset Park next season and watch Ayr chase promotion to the championship. Now all we need is the match time to be reduced to 80 minutes as it seems that Ayr always seem to lose a game in the final 10 minutes.