Gleneagles renovates tees on King’s course ahead of Senior Open

Gleneagles renovates tees on King’s course ahead of Senior Open
Richard Humphreys
By Richard Humphreys

Gleneagles in Scotland has completed a tee renovation on its King’s course ahead of it hosting the Senior Open on 21-24 July.

The layout underwent a restoration in 2016, with fairway lines taken back to how James Braid originally designed them, restoring several bunkers and widening some greens.

Recent work has focused on five holes: the seventh, eighth, twelfth, fourteenth and sixteenth.

A new tee has been built at the back of the sixth green to extend the length of the seventh hole from 444 to 468 yards. The new tee changes the angle for drives as there is now a more severe dogleg, making it much harder for players to cut the corner.

At the eighth, Gleneagles has extended the back tee and shifted it to the left to open up a view of the right side of the green from the tee. At the par-four twelfth, a new tee has been built 30 yards further back where a copse of trees is located, with players now required to hit their tee shots over fairway bunkers.

Work on the fourteenth has increased the yardage of tee shots but still retains the risk and reward element of this reachable par four, which has changed from 309 to 341 yards. And at the sixteenth, the existing tee has been lowered slightly and extended back and to the left to help open up a view of the entire green, even when the pin is positioned back-right.

Other changes include creating tightly mown surfaces around greens complexes and fairway bunkers to embrace the natural contours of the course. 

“Gleneagles’ reputation as a sporting estate has flourished for a century, with golf and the King’s course at the very heart of that rich history,” said Conor O’Leary, managing director of Gleneagles. “While our modern classic, the PGA Centenary course designed by Jack Nicklaus, has hosted iconic Ryder Cup and Solheim Cup matches, we are so proud to welcome legends of the game back to the King’s, where golf started at Gleneagles all those years ago.

“The sympathetic course changes we have made recognise the way the modern game has evolved, but still retain the King’s numerous strategic challenges that have made this timeless classic so revered the world over.”

In 2019, Gleneagles reworked its par-three thirteenth and fourteenth holes on the Queen’s course.