It is only the seventh time in more than 600 years that a golf course has been named at the Home of Golf but on Friday a new name was added to the canon of courses headed up by the world famous Old Course.
After a naming competition which attracted more than 4,000 entries from around the world the name of the new St Andrews Links course is the Castle Course.
The name reflects the history of the headland to the south-east of St Andrews where Kinkell Castle once stood in the middle ages.
The winner of the naming competition is Edwin Burtnett from America. He was selected after a random draw of all those who had suggested the winning name. Mr Burtnett will be invited to the VIP opening ceremony of the seventh course next year and will be given the opportunity to play one of the first rounds on the new course.
The decision on the new name was taken at a meeting of the Trustees of St Andrews Links Trust after a careful selection process. The Trustees considered a shortlist of names which was compiled by the St Andrews Links Course No 7 Working Party. The Trustees were seeking a name which was easy to understand, relevant to the course and St Andrews and which fitted in with the Links Trust’s family of names.
Alastair Dempster, chairman of Trustees, said, “In golfing terms this is a major decision and an historic announcement. It is not every day that a new course at St Andrews is named. In reaching this decision, we were acutely aware that the name of the new course would have to stand the test of time and remain appropriate to a world famous golfing destination.
“In selecting the Castle Course as the name I think we have made an excellent choice. I am sure golf fans around the world, many of whom entered the naming competition, will have their own views and will debate its merits for years to come but I am confident that people will appreciate the Castle Course as a fitting identity for a younger sister to the Old Course.”
The naming competition ran throughout last November through the www.standrews.org.uk website and attracted a massive field of entries from every continent including countries as diverse as Australia, Argentina, Thailand, Canada and Iceland.
The Castle Course has been designed by David McLay Kidd, a Scot who has gained worldwide renown for his work on courses such as Bandon Dunes in Oregon, Nanea in Hawaii and Queenwood in Surrey. The 220 acre cliff top course is expected to open for full play next spring and each hole will feature five tees to cater for all levels of ability. The par 71 layout will range in length from 5,600 to 7,200 yards. As with the existing six St Andrews Links courses the Castle Course will be public.
Alan McGregor, general manager of the Links Trust, said, “It has been an exciting process waiting to learn what the name for our seventh course would be. We were extremely pleased with the huge response we received for the naming competition and I would like to thank everyone who took the time to enter and play their part in the making of golf history.
“The Castle Course promises to be a wonderful course which we believe will attract golfers from all over the world with its quality and its spectacular views of St Andrews Bay, the Grampian mountains and out to the North Sea. We will begin taking bookings for play next year on the Castle Course and I am sure that, like me, many golfers will be looking forward to playing it for themselves.”
St Andrews Links Trust www.standrews.org.uk