Scottish Open: Stephen Gallacher hails new Jock MacVicar Award as 'great touch'
Lothians star Stephen Gallacher is delighted to be in with a chance of getting his hands on a new trophy up for grabs in this week’s abrdn Scottish Open at The Renaissance Club.
The Jock MacVicar AGW Memorial Award will be presented to the leading Scottish player in the Rolex Series event at the East Lothian venue.
The trophy has been commissioned by the European Tour on behalf of the Association of Golf Writers to commemorate the legendary Scottish golf writer, who died at the age of 83 in April.
“The introduction of the Jock MacVicar AGW Memorial Award for the leading home player in the abrdn Scottish Open is a great touch,” said four-time European Tour winner Gallacher.
“Jock was a legend and always enjoyed watching players progress in their careers after first coming across them in the Scottish Boys Championship.
“I know the Scottish Open was one of his favourite events of the year and well done to the European Tour for commissioning this new trophy on behalf of the AGW.”
Others with a chance of becoming the inaugural recipient are Bob MacIntyre who paid tribute to fellow Argyll man MacVicar by travelling from Oban down to the Mull of Kintyre to stand at the roadside as his funeral cortege passed by.
“It would be brilliant,” said the Scottish No 1 of that new opportunity in his third Scottish Open start. “Obviously not just that one, but the even bigger prize at the end of the week.”In the two previous editions at The Renaissance Club, Mother Nature hasn’t played ball - and now it’s happened again.CEO Jerry Sarvadi was delighted how the Tom Doak-designed course had been shaping up during the recent dry spell only to see the sting taken out of it by heavy rain over the past few days.“The golf course has softened up a little bit and, judging by the weather forecast, it doesn't look like there will be too much wind which is not the best. But it's what we're getting given,” said MacIntyre.“But the course is great. I spoke to Jerry when I walked off yesterday in pouring rain and I told him there's a lot more definition on the golf course. Like you're standing on tees and it does look more daunting.“I think that's a great thing because you know you're not standing up there and smashing driver like you could before. Although there's certain holes where you were like, you know what, I don't mind hitting in there, it’s a bit patchy in parts.“It's long enough that with an iron, a longer iron, it can wrap around the shaft and get you, but the course is looking really good this year.”
MacIntyre, who has been paired with world No 4 Collin Morikawa and European No 1 Lee Westwood in the opening two rounds, is delighted that fans are being allowed, albeit a strictly limited attendance.“It's good there's going to be crowds,” he said. "You're in Scotland, there's not going to be many of them against you.“Obviously playing with the bigger-named, higher-ranked players is always good. They are going to play well and they are going to drag you along and vice versa; if you're playing well, you'll hopefully drag them along."