EDINBURGH-BASED Richie Ramsay fell just short in his bid to become Scottish Open champion but left Castle Stuart with a trip to Troon this week as compensation.
The 33-year-old signed off with a 67 – his best score of the event – to finish joint-sixth behind Swedish winner Alex Noren in the £3.25 million event outside Inverness.
It was Ramsay’s best effort in his home Open and has given him the belief that he can claim the title in the future, with his next chance coming at Dundonald Links when the Ayrshire course stages the event for the first time next July.
But he’s heading to that part of the country a lot sooner after securing one of the four Open spots up for grabs in the Castle Stuart event along with Englishman Tyrrell Hatton, Belgian Nicolas Colsaerts and Italian Matteo Manassero.
“Standing on the tenth tee, I knew I could win the tournament and was trying 100 per cent to do that,” declared Ramsay after making a charge up the leaderboard on the back of four birdies on the spin from the third.
“That’s a great feeling and I just have to take that into this event in the future and see if I can get the title in the bag one of these years.”
On bolstering the home contingent at Troon to six – Sandy Lyle, Paul Lawrie, Colin Montgomerie, Russell Knox and Marc Warren had already secured spots in the 145th Claret Jug joust – he added: “It is fantastic to have qualified for The Open.
“I don’t think I’ve done myself justice in my three previous appearances, but this time we’ll be taking our little daughter Olivia, who is four-and-a-half months old, and I think she will enjoy her first major. It’s more of a treat for her.”