From 10-17 July 2022, the world’s oldest and most prestigious major championship in golf will return to St Andrews for The 150th Open.
It is one of the most anticipated and highly sought-after sporting events on the globe this year. The R&A received 1.3 million applications for tickets, resulting in a record 290,000 fans attending the Championship being played at the home of golf, where 156 of the world’s best players will hope to lift the iconic Claret Jug.
A Landmark Year
First held in Prestwick in 1860, The Open is now being held for the 150th time, a milestone celebration that is rarely seen in modern sport.
With a major anniversary to commemorate, this year’s Championship is set to be an amazing and memorable experience, for players and spectators alike.
In honour of the historic milestone, The Open will return to St Andrews, a stunning coastal town in the east of Scotland, famous for its former Royal residents and renowned across the world for its golfing history and heritage. St Andrews Links, ‘The Home of Golf’, dates back to 1552, when the people of St Andrews were granted the right to play golf on the links by Archbishop John Hamilton.
As the only major championship to be held outside of the United States, The Open is sure to be a definite highlight of the UK’s summer sporting calendar.
The 150th Open, coupled with the return to St Andrew’s, and the increased desire amongst fans to get back to live events following the pandemic, is encouraging a special kind of atmosphere.
Due to being held on the prestigious Old Course, the most historic golf course in the world, a number of golf’s greats, including the likes of Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Justin Thomas, are all expected to tee off this summer.
With wide double fairways, seven extensive double greens and several dramatic bunkers, this iconic links course has played host to some of the most remarkable moments in the game’s history, and this year is sure to be no exception.
It is believed that golf was first invented here as early as the 15th century, and despite its long-lasting popularity and grand status, one of the greatest features of the Old Course is it remains a public golf course and, tournament aside, it is open to all.
Indeed, the Old Course’s spectacular layout has changed little since St Andrews’ first hosting of The Open in 1873, and it has been attracting professional and amateur golfers from all over the world for generations, all of whom are eager to tee off from Hole 1 – arguably one of the most iconic shots in golf – and drive over the landmark Swilcan Bridge on the 18th hole.
The Return of Tiger Woods
Fans are eagerly anticipating the return of Tiger Woods to The Open for the first time since 2019 following his return to competitive golf after recovery from a car accident. Tiger, who has won two Championships at St Andrews and previously declared the Old Course as his favourite place to play, first lifted the Claret Jug in 2000, famously avoiding all bunkers for the entirety of the Championship to win by eight shots on 19-under-par, the lowest 72-hole score in relation to par and a then-record for major championships.
He proved in the first two majors of the year he still has the desire, hunger and passion to compete at the highest level. Do not be surprised to see him near the top of the leaderboard come 17th July.
Ones to Watch
By its very definition, the Open is actually the most ‘open’ of all the major championships, where even the most unlikely contenders have a chance of victory.
As a links golf course, the purest version of the game, The Open at St Andrews will require skill, subtlety and an ability to adapt to the tricky Scottish conditions.
Spanish-born Jon Rahm is currently the bookmakers’ favourite to emerge victorious this summer. Fresh off a win at the Mexico Open, he has achieved a top-13 finish in three of his last four appearances at a PGA Championship.
Scottie Scheffler and Justin Thomas are also popular contenders, with current World Number 1 Scheffler winning his first major at the Master’s Tournament in April, and Thomas bagged his second at the PGA Championship in May in testing conditions.
Louis Oosthuizen, a brand ambassador of Loch Lomond Whiskies, the Official Spirit of The Open, should also not be overlooked. Having previously won in St Andrews in 2010 and finishing runner-up in 2015 to Zach Johnson after a play-off, last year he also placed second at Royal St George’s. He is adept at playing links golf and will be highly motivated to win another Claret Jug.
The Spirit of The Open
This year’s Championship will see a record-breaking 290,000 fans descend upon St Andrews, and those lucky enough to attend will have plenty to enjoy on, and off, the course during the eight-day event.
Scotland’s national drink, whisky, goes hand-in-hand with its number one sporting export, and The Open will have an exceptional selection of single malts to sample, brought to spectators by Loch Lomond Whiskies, the Official Spirit of The Open.
Loch Lomond Whiskies is an award-winning scotch whisky distiller from the Highlands of Scotland, sitting in the shadow of the iconic Ben Lomond. Fuelled by an eternal spirit of exploration, the whisky-making team spend their days looking into the endless possibilities of Scotch, crafting unique flavours that appeal to a wide range of whisky aficionados and new fans alike.
Loch Lomond Whiskies produces whisky in a way like no other, using its remarkable straight neck stills, entirely unique to the distiller, to craft an extraordinary collection of flavoursome single malts that accentuate its signature style of fruit, honey and soft smoke.
Loch Lomond’s partnership with The R&A is now in its fifth year, having commenced in 2018. Over the course of Loch Lomond Whiskies’ time as the Official Spirit of The Open, a number of special edition single malt whiskies have been released to commemorate the partnership, working in collaboration with some of the most renowned names in golf. Colin Montgomerie was the first official signing as a Loch Lomond Whiskies Brand Ambassador in 2018, working with the distiller to promote the full product range worldwide, including the multiple limited-edition whiskies which carry his name.
Through partnerships with some of golf’s most well know golfers such as Paul Lawrie, Darren Clarke, Lee Westwood and golf presenter Iona Stephen, Loch Lomond Whiskies has proudly hosted exclusive events both at The Open and events across the globe.
A Showcase of Limited-Edition Single Malt Whiskies
To celebrate the prestigious 150th Championship, Loch Lomond Whiskies’ Master Blender Michael Henry has crafted three limited single malts to help tell the story of this extraordinary sporting tournament, including:
Loch Lomond The Open Special Edition 2022 (£45, ABV 46%) was crafted in partnership with legendary golfer Colin Montgomerie, who worked closely with Master Blender Michael Hendry to create a whisky worthy of The Open’s historic anniversary.
Loch Lomond The Open Course Edition 2022 (£225, 48.2%), a rich and elegant single malt whisky which pays homage to all the golf courses where The Open has taken place, from the first-ever championship in Prestwick in 1860 to St Andrews in the present day.
Loch Lomond Mizunara Cask (£1,500, ABV 52.8%) is exclusively available to purchase from Loch Lomond Whiskies’ marquee at The Open, providing a unique memento of this significant milestone in golfing history.
At The Open, Loch Lomond Whiskies will have a spectacular two-tier marquee located in the heart of the Spectators Village. Here, fans will be able to enjoy a remarkable range of single malts, while sitting back and watching the tournament unfold across a number of large TV screens.
For more information on The Open, please visit www.theopen.com