- TV deals mean millions will see the Scottish Open at Castle Stuart Golf Links
- Paul Lawrie visits for start of Castle Stuart’s 2013 season
- Ryder Cup stars confirm for Scottish Open field 11-14 July
Hundreds of millions of people from around the world are set to enjoy TV coverage from this year’s Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open, hosted at Castle Stuart Golf Links, thanks to commitments made by broadcasters Sky and NBC.
Sky is to treat the tournament like a golf major and will be on air eight hours a day from Castle Stuart. This will showcase not only the links but also the Highlands of Scotland in general.
The event will also be the first regular European Tour event to be shown live on a major United States TV broadcast network following an agreement signed with NBC which will complement the existing coverage on the Golf Channel.
NBC will broadcast two-and-a-half hours of live coverage on each of the final two days’ play from Castle Stuart.
Fraser Cromarty, Castle Stuart Golf Links’ sales and marketing director, said: “The Scottish Open will be seen by a worldwide television audience of 700 million due to historic broadcasting deals to cover the event. Despite being a very young golf course, Castle Stuart is already known globally because of our association with the tournament.
“This year we have an even greater chance to get into peoples’ living rooms around the world and promote our wonderful location. We intend making the most of this opportunity for the benefit of the Highlands and Scotland as a whole.”
Former Open champion and Ryder Cup hero Paul Lawrie added his voice to calls for Castle Stuart Golf Links to host further world class events as he opened the course for the 2013 season. Phil Mickelson, a past Masters champion, has urged the European Tour to stage a World Golf Championship event at the Inverness venue and Lawrie was quick to agree with the American.
He said: “Why not? You can see any tournament being brought here as it is a magnificent place. Imagine a WGC event round here – 64 of the world’s best players competing.”
The European Tour used the course opening to also launch a special green fee discount scheme to run in conjunction with this year’s Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open (11-14 July). Each person who buys a day ticket for the event will receive a £10 voucher or on purchase of a season ticket for the four days will receive a £25 voucher that can be redeemed against a green fee at Castle Stuart Golf Links.
Among the stars already confirmed to play in the Scottish Open are Lawrie’s fellow Ryder Cup stars Francesco Molinari and Nicolas Colsaerts, as well as leading Scottish players Stephen Gallacher, Richie Ramsay, Marc Warren and former Open and Masters champion Sandy Lyle.
Fraser Cromarty added: “The 2013 season will be another exciting year for us with the Scottish Open returning and a number of developments taking shape on and off the course.
“Paul has got us off to a great start by visiting the course to help us get the season under way and we look forward with great excitement to the year ahead.”
Opened in 2009, the spectacular Castle Stuart links has been listed by the influential Golf Magazine as number 56 in the list of the world’s top courses.
It quickly won global acclaim for its design, location and its ability to suit both amateurs and professionals and in 2011, just two years after opening, it hosted the Scottish Open, the first ever European Tour event to be held in the Highlands.
Since then golf superstars, including major winners Mickelson, Ernie Els, Graeme McDowell and Padraig Harrington have spoken in glowing terms about Castle Stuart.
As well as continuous improvements to the links, the course is progressing a number of developments to ensure facilities match its breath-taking setting. This year on-site accommodation was enhanced with the opening of three, three and four-bedroom luxury lodges.
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