Open Championship - Dunluce Course Guide

The Open Championship - Course Guide

The eyes of the sporting world turn to Portrush on the 14th July as the Open returns to Northern Ireland for only the second time in its history.

The epic Dunluce Links is the venue for the 148th Open. Combining fairways which meander through soaring sand dunes, small greens protected by grassy knolls, with stunning views across the mighty Atlantic Ocean, the championship course at Royal Portrush is one of the most spectacular and challenging links layouts in the world.

There was once an annual fair at the lost town of Dunluce whose ruined castle lends the 2019 Open course its name. Closed down in the late 18th century due to excessive drunkenness and debauchery, the site of the ancient festival welcomes 200,000 spectators to witness the world’s finest golfers compete for the Claret Jug.

Bet UK’s online betting has golf betting odds for the 2019 Open Championship, as well as odds for all European and PGA Tour events. Also take a look at our Open Championship betting tips from Robert Cobley, as well as his golf betting tips for all major events.

Open Championship 2019 At Portrush & Dunluce

A seaside resort on the north coast of Northern Ireland, Portrush is renowned for its sandy beaches, famous golf club and being home to the largest amusement park in the province. Portrush lies in County Antrim, renowned for the Giant's Causeway natural wonder and for being home to the world famous Bushmills Distillery.

Royal Portrush Golf Club lies a mile to the west of the town. Home to two courses, the Dunluce Links is the most famous of the pair having previously staged the Open. Its shorter, less demanding neighbour, the Valley Links is home to the Rathmore Golf Club which boasts 2010 US Open winner Graham McDowell among its members.

Fans of Game of Thrones will recognise the ruined medieval castle which overlooks the Dunluce layout. Dating back to the 13th century, Dunluce Castle sits atop a basalt outcrop and featured as the House of Greyjoy in the iconic TV series.

History of Royal Portrush & the Dunluce Links

Founded in 1888 as The County Club, the new golf club at Portrush received royal patronage four years later and assumed its current name in 1895.

The Dunluce Links course at Royal Portrush was redesigned in 1929 by legendary golf architect Harry Colt. The man behind courses at Sunningdale, Wentworth, Muirfield, Hoylake and Royal Liverpool, it’s said that Colt considered Portrush to be his finest work.

In 1951 the course became the first to host the Open outside of Great Britain. Englishman Max Faulkner lifted the Claret Jug that year to claim his first and only Major title.

How Does Dunluce Links Open Championship Course Play?

Dunluce is a classic seaside links and while the layout poses a challenge to rival the most demanding on the Open rota, on a calm day this is a playable 18-holes which won’t punish as much as the most brutal courses out there.

But when the wind is howling, Dunluce becomes a beast and can be wild on some of the more exposed holes. Whatever the weather this is a course which demands solid driving as it twists its way along the Antrim coast. The mystifying greens are small and well guarded and straying into the rough can be a truly chastening experience.

With the lowest number of bunkers of all the Open courses, the true test at Dunluce lies in the tactical challenge it will pose the world’s best. Each hole offers risk and reward, the option to cut a corner, play aggressively or defend. Every shot option on this course comes with a pro and a con. This is links golf in its purest form and it will be the wiliest tactician who emerges victorious after 72 holes here.

Bet UK’s online betting has golf betting odds for the 2019 Open Championship, as well as odds for all European and PGA Tour events.

The Signature Holes At Dunluce

It used to be said that the Dunluce course offered seventeen world-class golf holes, and the eighteenth. And that the 17th wasn’t up to much either.

With the return of the Open after a 68-year hiatus, a little extra bite worthy of a Major has been added with the introduction of two new holes at seven and eight. That means a round now finishes at the former 16th, a superb dogleg right with exceptional bunkering.

The 17th was at least famous for featuring one of the largest sand traps in Ireland. So as a nod to history, a new “Big Nellie” has been constructed at the new seventh.

The “White Rocks” fifth is perhaps the second most famous hole at Dunluce. The elevated tee offers a stunning vista and the green is perched at the very end of the course, 50ft above the shore below.

The par-3 16th, affectionately known as “Calamity Corner”, is considered to be one of the hardest holes in golf. This is an uphill hole carrying over a yawning chasm short and right. The green is buffeted by the relentless wind coming off the Atlantic and is protected by mounds and hollows. “Calamity” could yet make or break the round of any prospective Open champion.

Donluce is certainly set to challenge the contenders at this year’s Open Championship, but who will come out on top? You can find the latest golf betting odds right here at Bet UK and back your favourite.

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*All odds from Bet UK’s online betting markets correct at the time of writing.

If you are betting on the Open Championship, please gamble responsibly and remember that when the fun stops, stop. All players must be 18+.

Open Championship - Complete Guide

Guide To The Open Championship 2019

The small seaside town of Portrush in County Antrim is buzzing as the Royal Portrush Golf Club prepares to welcome 200,000 spectators to watch the world’s best golfers compete in one of golf’s most prestigious events - the Open Championship.

This year is the 148th edition of the world’s oldest golf tournament and only the second time the Open has been held outside of mainland Britain. It’s been a long wait for golf fans in Northern Ireland to welcome back the Claret Jug - 68 years in fact since Royal Portrush last staged the championship.

Bet UK’s online betting has golf betting odds for the 2019 Open Championship, as well as odds for all European and PGA Tour events. Also take a look at our Open Championship betting tips from Robert Cobley, as well as his golf betting tips for all major events.

2019 Will Be A Truly Special Open Championship

The 2019 Open promises to be an Open like no other. Tickets sold out almost as soon as they were released last year. No other Open has ever sold out entirely and the event will be watched by 600 million viewers worldwide.

The players will even be allowed to wear shorts during practice rounds for the first time ever - should the weather hold out. Such is the hype in Portrush ahead of the Open it was even rumoured that Banksy had visited the town after a piece of artwork depicting a young boy playing golf was spotted on the wall of the town’s lifeboat station.

Even people who don’t watch much golf during the rest of the year tune in for the Open and even more so this year. Always played on a coastal links course - considered the purest form of golf - the Open is traditionally held in mid-July and is the most international of the game’s four major championships.

Format Of The Open Championship

The Open Championship is the final major of the season and this year is held from July 14th to the 21st.

156 players compete in a stroke-play format to have their name etched on the Claret Jug - the prize awarded to the Open winner since 1872.

The field is cut after the first two rounds. If the players are tied after 72 holes, there will be a four-hole aggregate play-off which continues to sudden death if there is still no clear winner.

The Dunluce Links Course At Portrush Is One Of The World’s Best

The 2019 Open Championship will be played on the Dunluce Links course at Royal Portrush Golf Club. The course, considered to be one of the finest in the world, is regularly ranked towards the top of “the world’s best course” lists.

The course is named after the ruins of Dunluce Castle which overlook it. The 7,337-yard layout sits among giant sand dunes on the North Antrim Causeway Coast - an area which includes World Heritage Site, the Giant's Causeway, the Glens of Antrim and Rathlin Island - Northern Ireland’s most northerly point.

Royal Portrush Golf Club was established in 1888 and the Dunluce Links course was designed by legendary course creator Harry Colt in 1929. The course hosted the 1951 Open Championship and Royal Portrush has staged the Irish Open on five occasions. The 2012 edition of the Irish Open set a record for attendance figures on the European Tour with a crowd of over 130,000.

The Dunluce Links course is notable for its tiered undulating greens, thick rough capable of devouring any wayward ball, assorted natural hazards crafted from the natural landscape, and stunning ocean views.

The Last Time The Open Was Held At Portrush

The 80th Open was held at Royal Portrush and was the first time the championship had been held outside of England and Scotland. Englishman Max Faulkner took the 1951 title with a two-stroke winning margin over Antonio Cerdá from Argentina. A youthful Peter Allis made his professional debut at the event.

Faulkner had form at Portrush having previously been runner-up twice when the Irish Open had been held at the club. Faulkner was a flamboyant character with a penchant for brightly coloured golfing attire and would later become a journalist for the Daily Mail.

Players to watch at the 2019 Open Championship

2014 Open Championship winner Rory McIlroy regularly names Royal Portrush as one of his favourite courses. As a 16-year-old the Belfast native shot a 61-stroke course record at the Ireland Amateur Open so he sure has form here.

McIlroy has been in good fettle this year, winning the Players Championship in March and the Canadian Open in June. The 30-year-old posted top ten finishes at the PGA Championship and the US Open.

Other local boys to look out for include 2010 US Open champion Graham McDowell. McDowell only secured a spot at his home town Open by finishing joint eighth at the Canadian Open after he slipped right out of the world’s top 100 this year. But finding form at the right time bodes well for his chances of a good finish at Portrush.

The rest of the favourites for the 2019 Open are made up of the likes of Tiger Woods, Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka. Koepka has a stunning record at recent majors with first, second, first, second finishes in the last four – and his caddy is from Portrush and played the links here as a boy.

Last year’s winner Francesco Molinari is also worth keeping an eye on as is Justin Rose who threatened to mount a serious challenge at the US Open before fading on the final day.

With several strong contenders in the mix to take this year’s title, along with some potential outsiders, it’s certainly shaping up to be an exciting tournament for spectators. You can find the latest Open Championship golf odds here at Bet UK and get behind your favourite.

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*All odds from Bet UK’s online betting markets correct at the time of writing.

If you are betting on the Open Championship, please gamble responsibly and remember that when the fun stops, stop. All players must be 18+.