Donald Trump says R&A wants to end absence of Open Championship at Turnberry, former US president will punish PGA Tour for failing to reach an agreement with the Saudi-backed LIV series.
Trump spoke after he played the pros at LIV’s final event of the year at Miami’s Doral, which he, like Turnberry, owns. He said the famous Ailsa Links in Ayrshire, which last hosted the Open in 2009, had been targeted by a host of groups looking to host tournaments.
“Everybody wants Turnberry, but we’re a little wary of Turnberry,” Trump said. Afterwards, he was asked if the Open could return.
“They want, I can tell you they want to come back,” he said. “The Open wants to come back. It is now considered the #1 course in Europe. We did a big operation and it got great reviews even from people who hate me. They want the Open back.”
This may well be news to the R&A. Five days after the attack on the US Capitol, R&A chief executive Martin Slumbers issued a statement saying: “We have had no plans to host any of our championships at Turnberry and will not be doing so for the foreseeable future. We will not return until we are sure that the focus is on the championship, the players and the course itself, and we do not believe that is achievable in the current circumstances.” The R&A has been approached for any updated comments.
Trump also took aim at the PGA Tour for its staunch opposition to the LIV scheme. “The Tour handled it so badly,” the 76-year-old added. “Tour, people are up there, something has to happen. They had the advantage of dealing with very good people with unlimited money. Something should have been resolved very easily, and Tour decided, as Richard Nixon said, to shut it down. What the Tour did was bad for golf. They missed a great opportunity.”
Doral has previously hosted both PGA Tour and World events Golf The championship was moved to Mexico City until the last one. Trump clearly enjoyed having big names back on his court. “He doesn’t need it because he’s doing so well,” he insisted. “It was a huge success from day one. Tour really wants to be here. The players are in love with this place, they always have been.”