Scottish Open: 'Bulldog' Richie Ramsay pips Bob MacIntyre for Jock MacVicar Award

Richie Ramsay showed “bulldog” qualities to pip Bob MacIntyre in a thrilling battle to win the inaugural Jock MacVicar AGW Memorial Award for the leading home player in the abrdn Scottish Open.

Sunday, 11th July 2021, 6:38 pm
Richie Ramsay hits a tee shot during the last day of the abrdn Scottish Open in East Lothian. Picture: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images.
Richie Ramsay hits a tee shot during the last day of the abrdn Scottish Open in East Lothian. Picture: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images.

The Aberdonian birdied the 16th and 17th holes at The Renaissance Club as he closed with a 69 to finish joint-15th on 12-under-par, beating MacIntyre by a shot after the Scottish No 1 signed off with the same score.

“Today was a big deal, I can’t shy away from it,” said Ramsay of being in with a chance of landing the big prize as he started out just four shots off the lead. “I thought about it a lot this morning and the connotations go through your year.

“I managed to settle down on the range and was two-under before making a couple of silly mistakes on 10 and 11.

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Bob MacIntyre during the final round of the abrdn Scottish Open at The Renaissance Club. Picture: Mark Runnacles/Getty Images.

“It got tricky in a little bit of a breeze and then the rain came on, but I holed a great par-saving putt on 15 then birdied 16 before making a great birdie on 17.

“It could have flipped the other way, but I enjoy having to be gritty. A bit like a bulldog getting in a fight, I don’t back down and 16 and 17 showed that.

“It’s more Race to Dubai points on the board and it’s been a significant jump in the last two weeks (having finished joint-fourth in the Irish Open), which is exactly what I needed.”

Ramsay, who had started the day on 10-under, birdied the third and seventh before dropping his first shot of the weekend at the 10th then letting another shot slip away at the next.

With three holes to play, he was trailing MacIntyre by a shot in that battle to finish as top Scot, but it was job done as he birdied both the 16th and 17th then overcame a 90-minute weather delay to par the last.

Helped by a “tweak” to his driver and “trusting lines” on the greens, MacIntyre finished with a bogey-free effort, picking up an early birdie at the second but then having to wait another 14 holes for his only other gain.

“It was the same as Saturday. I played great, within reason,” he reported afterwards. “I just didn’t get much out of it.

“When I birdied the second, I thought, ‘here we go’, and I teed-it a bit lower on the third to take a bit of speed off the ball. Instead, I cannoned it and it snuck into the bunker.

“That killed my momentum. I needed momentum to get going through the first five holes. You get days like that and it just seems to be happening a bit often right now.

“I hit a great shot at the 13th right at the pin and it almost ran off the green. It was just one of those days. It wasn’t meant to be.”

Looking at the positives as he now turns his attention to the 149th Open at Royal St George’s, where he will be the sole Scot in the field, he added: “Today was a bogey-free round and I was never in trouble.”

David Law, who started the day alongside Ramsay on 10-under, saw a lot of his good work from earlier in the week undone by a run of four bogeys in six holes around the turn.

But, playing alongside European No 1 Lee Westwood and watched by mentor and manager Paul Lawrie from outside the ropes, the Aberdonian repaired most of that damage with a burst of three birdies in four holes from 13th for a 72.

That left him in joint-35th on nine-under alongside Connor Syme, who came home in 32 in his 68 to make it three top-50 finishes in a row in his home event.

Grant Forrest, who had been handily-placed heading into the weekend before losing ground on Saturday with a 72, signed off with a 73 to finish on two-under to be just outside the top 70.

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