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Your Chance To Play The Old Course In Reverse

By: Golfshake Editor | Fri 01 Dec 2023

The timeless atmosphere of the Old Course at St Andrews is set to take on a new twist, as golfers are invited to take a journey through time and explore the ‘Old Course Reversed’.  Once a year on the Saturday closest to St Andrews Day (30 November), the reverse routing is still used for a competition limited to a small number of local club members but that is all set to change with the announcement of a new annual event taking place over 6 days from 2024.

To commemorate 50 years of the St Andrews Links Trust being custodians of the world’s most renowned golfing landscape, they have announced an annual event that will give golfers a unique chance to experience the famous course from a fresh perspective - playing the famous Old Course in reverse.

The Old Course Reversed

From the 1400s the Old Course emerged and evolved from the living landscape with outward and inward holes played to the same greens and using the same fairways, meaning it was designed to be played in either clockwise or any-clockwise direction. In 1764 it was reduced from 22 to 18 holes and in 1870 Old Tom Morris introduced the current 1st green by splitting it from the 17th to form the standard anti-clockwise routing in use today.

The Old Course at St Andrews in Reverse - Scorecard, Routing, Hole Images

Taking place over 6 days, from the 28th of March until the 2nd of April 2024, this unique event will see the historic clockwise routing (with the holes played in reverse order) in play, giving golfers the opportunity to experience something truly special. The first three  days will see the course played in reverse, with the remaining days played in the current-day routing to give golfers the unique perspective of playing both ways.

Tee times will be available for St Andrews Links ticketholders through the usual local ballot and a dedicated ticketholder day, while other golfers will be able to enter an open ballot as well as applying for a limited number of advanced packages.   

Advanced public packages will be priced at £575 and feature three rounds of golf with one Old Course, one Old Course Reversed and one on the Castle Course as well as food & drink and Academy vouchers.

Applications for packages will open for a limited 48-hour window from 11-12 December 2023.

St Andrews

Neil Coulson, CEO of St Andrews Links Trust, said: “We are excited to introduce Old Course Reversed, which will give more of our ticketholders and golf visitors the opportunity to experience something unique in the world of golf.

“The anti-clockwise routing is such a vital piece of the history and evolution of the Old Course we feel it is important to celebrate this during a dedicated event open to all golfers from near and far. We believe the introduction of Old Course Reversed will be hugely popular and will capture the imagination of golfers around the world.”

Stories of the reverse routing has captivated golfers for decades, with many of the historic features becoming more prominent when played a different way.  The current routing has been the standard since the early 1900s when the course was regularly switched on alternative weeks. 

For more information on Old Course Reverse visit: standrews.com/old_course_reversed

Related Articles

The Old Course at St Andrews in Reverse - Scorecard, Routing, Hole Images

How to Get a Tee Time on the Old Course at St Andrews

The Experience of Playing the Old Course at St Andrews

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Tags: st andrews Scotland

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