THE Championship Course at Royal Dornoch always features in any debate about the world’s most treasured links.
Inevitably, perhaps, the sister Struie Course has lived in its shadow, despite enjoying a UK top 50 ranking in its own right.
But many of the world’s leading senior amateur players are discovering the club offers two first-class, but contrasting, golfing experiences.
For the first time, The R&A Women’s and Men’s Senior Amateur Championships are being held concurrently at the same venue. The action runs from Tuesday to Friday.
Nearly 300 competitors enjoy a practice round on each course before qualifiers for the final two days over the Championship Course.
“Both courses are in excellent condition and the Seniors are already enjoying their experience at Royal Dornoch,” said general manager Neil Hampton.
“While the Championship Course regularly figures in the lists of the world’s top courses – most recently ranked at number three by Golf Digest – we are also very proud of the Struie Course.
“It’s often said that if we didn’t have the Championship Course, the Struie would be a household name in its own right.
“It has been overshadowed to a certain extent but this is an occasion where it will stand on its own two feet.”
“And with the tee-sheet full for the Championship Course, we are finding more and more visitors booking the Struie.”
The Struie has undergone various guises over the decades, with some holes dating back to the Ladies Course opened by Louise Carnegie, wife of Sir Andrew, in 1899.
A Par 71, it stretches 6265 yards off the white tees, with three Par 5s and four Par 3s.
In addition to the golden gorse, trees and a burn come into play on several holes.
“The competitors have been presented with two very different challenges,” explained Neil.
“The Championship Course is renowned for its rumpled, rolling fairways with plateau greens and deep bunkers.
“The Struie is shorter and flatter with tighter fairways, smaller greens and shallower bunkers.”