ClubGolf, the junior golf development programme in Scotland, was today given a ringing endorsement from Ryder Cup Europe when the dates for the 2014 match at Gleneagles were officially announced.
On a historic day for Scottish Golf, it was revealed the Ryder Cup
will take place at the world-renowned Perthshire venue from Friday
September 26 to Sunday September 28, 2014. Final changes to the PGA
Centenary Course, host venue for 2014, are being made this winter
following the input of designer Jack Nicklaus, the world's greatest
It was also a significant day for the clubgolf programme, given
the praise it achieved from some of the most notable figures in
Scottish society and European golf.
Richard Hills, European Ryder Cup Director, speaking at the Dormy
House at Gleneagles as the dates were revealed, compared the
ClubGolf programme to having the same worldwide impact as legendary
Spaniard Seve Ballesteros' famous chip shot, threaded between
bunkers, on the 72nd hole of the Open Championship at Royal
Birkdale in 1976.
Describing the ClubGolf initiative, created as a legacy of the
2014 Ryder Cup, Hills said: "We, as Ryder Cup, would like to
congratulate you on the initiative of clubgolf. It's a shot which
has rung out around the world in a similar way to Seve Ballesteros
in 1976 at Birkdale.
"The initiative that you have undertaken with clubgolf is
outstanding and we, as Ryder Cup, are very proud to be a part of
Hills added: "The engagement of Scotland to host the match has
been outstanding. Three agencies, Event Scotland, Visit Scotland
Scottish Enterprise, have been outstanding."
Hills was joined at the top table by Alex Salmond, Scotland's
First Minister, who expressed his delight at the milestone
announcement of the dates for 2014 and also the success of the
Salmond said: "Ryder Cup Europe and the Scottish Government are
together interested in the legacy effect of the amazing event that
will be 2014 at Gleneagles, which includes ClubGolf.
"We firmly expect to be through the 40,000 mark this year in terms
of the number of nine-year-olds in Scotland who are going to have
the opportunity to pick up a golf club. We're absolutely convinced
that the future of golf is to make sure every child in Scotland has
the opportunity to play golf and then get the opportunity to go on
"ClubGolf gives thousands of children in Scotland the chance to
play golf, putting a club in the hands of every nine-year-old in
the country, and the Scottish Government recently announced a £2
million investment in the programme to build on the legacy
opportunity The Ryder Cup offers."
Diageo, the world's leading premium drinks business and producer
of Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky, was today named as an Official
Partner of The 2014 Ryder Cup at Gleneagles. Diageo owns The
Gleneagles Hotel, the host venue for the 40th staging of the
Also offering his backing to clubgolf, Peter Lederer, Chairman of
Gleneagles Hotel, said: "Gleneagles and Diageo have a strong record
in supporting youth golf development in Scotland and we are
determined to use this sponsorship to contribute to the long-term
"The Ryder Cup generates for Scotland and Scottish golf."