Gleneagles gears up for Johnnie Walker Championship

By: | Wed 22 Aug 2012


In an all star cast, twenty-six nationalities are represented in a field that includes a 24-man strong Scottish contingent for home fans to follow. The 2012 Johnnie Walker Championship field has amassed a remarkable 260 European Tour titles between them, including seven Majors. Joining defending Champion Thomas Björn and his fellow 2012 European Ryder Cup Vice Captains, Darren Clarke and Paul McGinley are Paul Lawrie, Francesco Molinari, Rafael Cabrera-Bello and Nicolas Colsaerts amongst others, who will all be looking to take the title off Björn’s hands.

Björn, who European Ryder Cup Captain, José María Olazábal named as one of his four Vice Captains last Thursday, is looking forward to defending his title at Gleneagles, a course that has undergone significant changes ahead of hosting the 2014 Ryder Cup. "Winning the 2011 Johnnie Walker Championship was one of the highlights of last season," said Björn. "To come back as Champion is very special and I’m raring to get going and see the new alterations first hand, especially the 18th Green"

Whilst eyes will be on Björn and whether he can defend his title, the Johnnie Walker Championship is also in the limelight due to the year-long race for European Ryder Cup places reaching its climax this week. Whilst Sergio Garcia confirmed his spot with a convincing win at the Wyndham Championship yesterday, Ryder Cup hopefuls Rafael Cabrera- Bello, Nicolas Colsaerts and US PGA Championship runner-up David Lynn are all hoping they can do enough to be in Jose Maria Olazabal’s team come Sunday. All three can oust the player in the last automatic spot, German Martin Kaymer, out of the side. Captain Olazábal will name his two wild card picks the following day and a good performance may be enough to convince the Spaniard they should be on that plane to Medinah in just over a month’s time.

One man who has his seat booked already is home favourite and former Open Champion, Paul Lawrie. Lawrie qualifies fourth on the European points table and the Scot, who ends a 13-year European team appearance drought, is keen to put on a good display at Gleneagles. "I’m thrilled to know that my place in the 2012 Ryder Cup team is now secure" said the Aberdonian. "My focus is on the here and now though and that continues with playing well here at Gleneagles. This is my twelfth Johnnie Walker Championship and it’s a tournament I really enjoy. I really hope the Scottish golf fans are out in force and enjoy the golf on show."

Other Scots who will be gunning for the Johnnie Walker Championship trophy and £233,330 winner’s purse include former Ryder Cup Captain and Championship Chairman Colin Montgomerie, West Lothian’s Stephen Gallacher, who has a history of playing well at Gleneagles, 2007 Champion Marc Warren, Glaswegian Alastair Forsyth and Gleneagles Scottish PGA Champion Graham Fox, amongst others.

Previous winners of the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles include England’s Warren Bennett in 1999; Sweden’s Pierre Fulke in 2000; Englishman Paul Casey in 2001 and 2006 (the only player to win on two occasions); Australia’s Adam Scott in 2002; Denmark’s Søren Kjeldsen (2003); England’s Miles Tunnicliff (2004); Italy’s Emanuele Canonica (2005); Marc Warren, the only Scot to win, in 2007; Grégory Havret of France (2008); Sweden’s Peter Hedblom in 2009; Edoardo Molinari in 2010 and Thomas Björn in 2011.

The prize fund is £1.4 million with the winner receiving a cheque for £233,330

The 2012 Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles will again be broadcast on Sky Sports and will be played at Gleneagles PGA Centenary Course from August 23-26.

For the second successive year in a row the Championship organisers have set the Friday ticket price to just £5. Once again Gleneagles will donate all the revenue from on-the-day ticket sales to ClubGolf – Scotland’s junior golf development programme.

Tickets are available at the course and at www.europeantourtickets.com. Parking is free. For full details on the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles visit www.johnniewalkerchampionship.com; for further details on The Gleneagles Hotel, visit www.gleneagles.com

In an all star cast, twenty-six nationalities are represented in a field that includes a 24-man strong Scottish contingent for home fans to follow. The 2012 Johnnie Walker Championship field has amassed a remarkable 260 European Tour titles between them, including seven Majors. Joining defending Champion Thomas Björn and his fellow 2012 European Ryder Cup Vice Captains, Darren Clarke and Paul McGinley are Paul Lawrie, Francesco Molinari, Rafael Cabrera-Bello and Nicolas Colsaerts amongst others, who will all be looking to take the title off Björn’s hands.

Björn, who European Ryder Cup Captain, José María Olazábal named as one of his four Vice Captains last Thursday, is looking forward to defending his title at Gleneagles, a course that has undergone significant changes ahead of hosting the 2014 Ryder Cup. "Winning the 2011 Johnnie Walker Championship was one of the highlights of last season," said Björn. "To come back as Champion is very special and I’m raring to get going and see the new alterations first hand, especially the 18th Green"

Whilst eyes will be on Björn and whether he can defend his title, the Johnnie Walker Championship is also in the limelight due to the year-long race for European Ryder Cup places reaching its climax this week. Whilst Sergio Garcia confirmed his spot with a convincing win at the Wyndham Championship yesterday, Ryder Cup hopefuls Rafael Cabrera- Bello, Nicolas Colsaerts and US PGA Championship runner-up David Lynn are all hoping they can do enough to be in Jose Maria Olazabal’s team come Sunday. All three can oust the player in the last automatic spot, German Martin Kaymer, out of the side. Captain Olazábal will name his two wild card picks the following day and a good performance may be enough to convince the Spaniard they should be on that plane to Medinah in just over a month’s time.

One man who has his seat booked already is home favourite and former Open Champion, Paul Lawrie. Lawrie qualifies fourth on the European points table and the Scot, who ends a 13-year European team appearance drought, is keen to put on a good display at Gleneagles. "I’m thrilled to know that my place in the 2012 Ryder Cup team is now secure" said the Aberdonian. "My focus is on the here and now though and that continues with playing well here at Gleneagles. This is my twelfth Johnnie Walker Championship and it’s a tournament I really enjoy. I really hope the Scottish golf fans are out in force and enjoy the golf on show."

The prize fund is £1.4 million with the winner receiving a cheque for £233,330

The 2012 Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles will again be broadcast on Sky Sports and will be played at Gleneagles PGA Centenary Course from August 23-26.

For the second successive year in a row the Championship organisers have set the Friday ticket price to just £5. Once again Gleneagles will donate all the revenue from on-the-day ticket sales to ClubGolf – Scotland’s junior golf development programme.

Tickets are available at the course and at www.europeantourtickets.com. Parking is free. For full details on the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles visit www.johnniewalkerchampionship.com.

 

.

 



More Ryder Cup Coverage







Latest Golf News

Editors Pick: Exclusives & Opinion
Scroll to top