Royal Birkdale: The Spirit of Sportsmanship
The Royal Birkdale GC dates back to 1889, and has been an Open rota course since hosting its first Open Championship in 1954. It's obvious this storied links has some pedigree; Jordan Spieth’s adventure from holes 13 to 18 in the 2017 Open anyone?? But Birkdale is also the site of “The Concession”, where a ferociously contested 1969 Ryder Cup ended in a tie after Jack Nicklaus conceded a short putt to Great Britain’s Tony Jacklin.
The concession is widely regarded as one of the greatest acts of sportsmanship in golf, if not all of sports. Would that same sportsmanship be on display when our friends at Golf Away Tours sent four groups of their clients to Birkdale?
Our photographers were keen to find out, but first had to deal with some difficult conditions during the day. The pictures and videos show that often times at a links course the only consistent is inconsistency, but our crew was prepared and handled the weather like the pros they are.
From an architectural perspective, Birkdale winds through high mounds that are visually stunning, and those features are apparent here. This perspective is unique to other published pictures of the course, and we think might just give a new appreciation to the challenge and fun of the course.
From the golfer’s expressions, it’s clear they had a great time and hopefully reveled in that spirit of sportsmanship for which Birkdale is famous.