Kilmarnock (Barassie) Golf Club, one of the finest championship links courses in Scotland, is looking forward to hosting two leading female events at amateur and professional level in 2020.
The prestigious Ayrshire club on the outskirts of Troon has been selected by The R&A as Final Qualifying venue for this year’s AIG Women’s British Open, which is staged at nearby Royal Troon in August.
Final Qualifying will take place at Barassie on Monday 17 August, before a stellar field assembles at Troon three days’ later for the four-round event – won by Englishwoman Georgia Hall in 2018 and Japan’s Hinako Shibuno last summer.
Continuing their support of female golf, Barassie looks forward to welcoming world-class players for The R&A Women’s Amateur from 23-27 June. Won last year by England’s Emily Toy, the event has been staged since 1893 and past winners also include Leona Maguire and Major champions Hall and Anna Nordqvist. The selections continue Barassie’s impressive history of hosting leading amateur and professional events, having acted as a Final Qualifying venue for The Open in 2009.
Barassie, which staged the Boys Amateur in 2010 and the Scottish Amateur Stroke Play in 2012, also held Final Qualifying for the 2012 Senior Open Championship and the 2017 Scottish Open. The club are delighted to now be achieving further recognition, announcements that reflect positively on the membership and to help attract further visitors to the west coast layout.
David Addison, General Manager, said: “We very much look forward to hosting these prestigious events in 2020, adding to the rich history of Kilmarnock (Barassie). Being associated with the AIG Women’s British Open is fantastic for the club, while The Women’s Amateur is another leading event on the global golf circuit. We are delighted with our selections which reflect the quality of our product at the club – both on and off the course.”
Barassie, which impressively saw Euan Walker become the fourth member from the club to represent Great Britain and Ireland in last September’s Walker Cup, has worked hard to maintain and improve the standard of its renowned links.
Last year, course changes – notably the addition of a new short 12th hole – saw Barassie achieve a new look to help boost enjoyment and playability. Working with designer Paul Kimber, an area of the club’s property was identified to create the exciting new par-3 hole with good drainage, as well as removing two long walks between holes. After gorse was taken away and sand imported from other parts of the site, the new 12th, known as ‘Hillhouse,’ replaced the former par-3 6th hole.
To create a better link between the 5th green and the former 7th fairway, Kimber also built new teeing grounds near the 5th green to enable play towards the new 6th fairway from a completely different angle and achieve a right-to-left dogleg hugging the railway line. The total yardage for the par-72 course has reduced by eight yards to 6,814, while the standard scratch for all levels has remained the same.
Coupled with other initiatives, such as rough reduction, the course changes have been welcomed by members and visitors alike.