Ogilvy ‘disgusted’ by Old Course changes

Geoff Ogilvy believes anyone who ever considers designing a golf course should simply take a look at The Old Course at St Andrews and ‘work’ from there.

So when the 2006 US Open champion, now ranked 47th in the world, criticises proposed changes to the Grand Old Lady, to toughen her up a little, one of the most respected voices in the game is deadly serious.

Geoff Ogilvy Geoff Ogilvy (Credit: Anthony Powter)

With St Andrews set to host its next Open Championship in 2015, the R&A plans to change several holes on the hallowed turf in an attempt to torpedo some of the low scores being shot there whenever the weather is calm.

Among the intended changes to be carried out over the next two Scottish winters are an alteration to the Road Hole bunker beside the 17th green.

Yet Ogilvy has criticised those plans.

“It’s like saying, ‘The Mona Lisa is fading a little so let’s put some colour into her face, people will enjoy it more’,” he said.

“Or ‘The Sistine Chapel is a bit small now for the number of people who want to go through it, let’s make it bigger’.”

“It’s disappointing in that the whole point of it is to make us shoot a slightly higher score [there] every five years.

“It’s embarrassing – disgusting – that they’re doing it for that reason.”

“It’s hard to find the words to describe the arrogance of doing something like that, it’s incredible.”