Paul Lawrie, The 1999 Open Champion, will tee it up on home soil at the Scottish Senior Open for the first time on Europe’s over-50s circuit when the Staysure Tour returns to Craigielaw Golf Club from August 16-18.
Lawrie, who turned 50 at the beginning of the year, will continue his maiden voyage on the Staysure Tour with an appearance at the East Lothian links, just three weeks after playing The Senior Open Presented by Rolex at Royal Lytham & St Annes.
Aberdonian Lawrie, who has eight European Tour titles to his name, including three on home soil; The 1999 Open Championship, the 2001 Dunhill Links Championship, and the 2012 Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles, is eager to take on the challenge.
“It will be very special to play in my first Scottish Senior Open in August,” he said.
“It’s always great to play on home soil and I’m looking forward to be playing in front of home crowds as a member of the Staysure Tour.”
“I’ve got a lot of happy memories from European Tour events in Scotland and hopefully I’ll be able to create some new ones this year on the over-50s circuit.”
The two-time Ryder Cup player could write his name in the history books by winning the Scottish Senior Open, becoming just the second Scottish player in successive years to win their national senior open. Gary Orr won the championship in 2018 to become the first Scot to claim the title since Sam Torrance accomplished the feat in 2006. David Huish became the first homegrown winner in 1998 before Bill Longmuir clinched the title en route to finishing fifth on the Staysure Tour Order of Merit in 2004.
Orr clinched the title in gruelling conditions during the final round, where birdies came at a premium. However, the Helensburgh-born home favourite kept his nerve, carding a birdie on the last hole to take a one stroke victory over Rookie of the Year Paul Streeter.
Having grown up on Scottish links and become accustomed to the changing conditions, Lawrie is hoping his fond memories of home will stand him in good stead when he takes to tackling the Craigielaw track in August.
“I have played links golf all my life so I’m looking forward to the challenge of Craigielaw, which is one of a number of excellent East Lothian courses, but especially since there’ll be a title up for grabs.
“Naturally, it would be a privilege and honour for me to join the list of great names already on the Scottish Senior Open trophy.
“The weather normally plays a big part on links courses, as it did last year when Gary Orr won. You never know exactly how the conditions will play but that’s part of the fun of it and I’m certain it’ll be a great week when it comes around.”
East Lothian Council’s Head of Service (Development) Douglas Proudfoot, said: “I am delighted that once again East Lothian will be hosting this wonderful tournament. It is a fantastic family event with a great atmosphere.
“I’m sure the fact Paul Lawrie has confirmed he will play will be a big draw and we can look forward to an even bigger grown than last year, all of whom I’m sure will enjoy visiting Scotland’s Golf Coast with its wonderful scenery and hospitality.”
Admission to the course is free on all three days, and car parking is charged at £5 per car with all proceeds going to a local charity.