A field of international amateur and professional golfers tee'd-off this morning, Tuesday 3rd October, at Kilspindie, Aberlady in the 13th the LinkedGolfers World Hickory Festival. This year the event is being held over Scotland’s Golf Coast’s unique assembly of hickory-bespoke links featuring some of the world’s best layouts.
As in past years, the field reflects most of the best exponents of hickory golf in the world. Indeed, the organisers are delighted with support from more than a dozen countries – some which will surprise golfing aficionados. Out of the 120 competitors, 28 arrived this week from Switzerland, where their game is centred on Engadine near St Moritz, where members also tend indulge in toboggan racing in the winter on the infamous Cresta Run. But don’t be bluffed by these remarkable facts, the Swiss are serious hickory golf experts. For example, Paolo Quirici is one of the top seeds this year, and he was Championship winner in 2013.
Some wonderful outfits were seen disappearing down the first fairway, whilst OldField Clothing Company were seen adding the final touches to a few outfits from their stall in the clubhouse.
Councillor John McMillan, East Lothian Council spokesperson for Economic Development and Tourism commented, "The World Hickory Open is a relatively modest event by comparison with next year's Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open and Ladies Scottish Open, but it comes at a time of year where the hospitality sector needs all the revenues it can generate, so all the support we can give by attracting quality events during shoulder season will be welcomed.
"Meanwhile the international profile of the event has promoted Scotland's Golf Coast all over the world, with many of the players hopefully coming back year after year and encouraging friends and family to discover all that East Lothian has to offer, on and off the golf course."