Golf: Grant Forrest explains why he's swapped caddies as John McClure takes bag

Grant Forrest. Pic: SNSGrant Forrest. Pic: SNS
Grant Forrest. Pic: SNS
Lothians golfer admits it was 'tough call' to make change

Grant Forrest is hoping a “caddie swap” can help him build on a promising first season on the European Tour.

The Lothians star, one of four Scots to graduate from the Challenge Tour at the end of last season, comfortably held on to his card for the 2020 campaign by finishing 94th in the Race to Dubai.

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He’s in South Africa this week to get the new term underway in the Alfred Dunhill Championship at Leopard Creek and has made a change on his bag.

Fellow Lothians man Scott Carmichael caddied for Forrest last season, but he’s switched to Northern Irishman John McClure, who, like Rory McIlroy, hails from Holywood.

“John has been with (Frenchman) Clement Sordet for the last couple of years. He did a couple of events for me, one as an amateur, and a couple of Challenge Tour and also one last year.

“It’s still early in my career and Scott was the only full-time caddie I’d had. I just felt it was time for a change. He’s a great caddie and he’s actually working for Clement now, so we’ve done a straight swap.

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“I wanted to see how it worked with someone else. Scott’s a good mate, so it was hard. It was a tough decision, but I hope it works out.”

Forrest recorded top-ten finishes in his rookie season, had a stroke average of 71.22 and racked up earnings of ¤381,886.

“I can’t be too disappointed about how my first season ended up,” said the 26-year-old from North Berwick. “I comfortably kept my card, but I was disappointed not to be at least playing in Turkey with the position I was in halfway through the season.

“I took the decision after the Irish and Scottish Opens to tweak a few things in my swing, starting to work with Liam James, who is with the Robert Rock Academy but is out on tour most weeks.

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“We were doing stuff at tournaments that, ideally, you’d try and do away from events. It is all starting to come together and the changes are bedding in nicely. We are really just building for the 2020 season.”