After a break of almost two years, it is finally time to tee off again at The Open. The 149th edition of the oldest major golf championship in the world will take place from 15 to 18 July at Royal St George’s Golf Club in England. Last year, The Open could not take place due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Now the world’s best golfers return to Great Britain to play for the prestigious title of the only major outside of the United States of America.
Mercedes-Benz has been the Official Patron of The Open since 2011 and ensures mobility for players, officials and selected guests by providing a fleet of over 100 vehicles. A close partnership has since developed between organisers The R&A and the luxury car brand with the star. Fittingly for the tenth anniversary, the venue for The 149th Open in 2021 is the same as 2011: Royal St George’s Golf Club.
“We are a proud partner of The Open, one of the most prestigious golf championships in the world, and are delighted with what is now a ten-year successful partnership,” says Bettina Fetzer, Head of Communications and Marketing at Mercedes-Benz AG. “Mercedes-Benz and the championship organisers R&A share the ambition to actively shape the future with sustainable innovations and new standards, both in golf and mobility.”
With the Return of the Claret Jug, the official ceremony at the start of the championship week, defending champion and reigning Champion Golfer of the Year Shane Lowry handed over the iconic trophy to Martin Slumbers, Chief Executive of The R&A. Shane Lowry arrived in a Mercedes-Benz S 500 4MATIC lang (fuel consumption combined: 8.6-8 l/km; CO2 emissions combined: 197-183 g/km). The Irish professional golfer was presented with the Claret Jug in 2019 at Royal Portrush in Northern Ireland after winning the championship.
“Mercedes-Benz has been a strong, reliable Patron of The Open for ten years, advancing mobility and innovation issues together with us,” says Neil Armit, Chief Commercial Officer of The R&A. “Looking back, it has been a decade of achievements. Mercedes-Benz is a great supporter of golf and a very valued partner of The R&A.”
From a sporting perspective, Mercedes-Benz brand ambassadors Jon Rahm, Ian Poulter and Rickie Fowler are in for an exciting time at The Open. Jon Rahm is in excellent form. A few weeks ago, the 26-year-old Spaniard won the 121st edition of the U.S. Open and thus his first major championship. He also finished among the top eight in both previous major tournaments this year.
As the world’s number two golfer, Jon Rahm is one of the favourites to win the Claret Jug. Rickie Fowler has been among the top six in The Open three times in the past ten years and is competing in his second major this year at Royal St George’s Golf Club. Ian Poulter, runner-up at The Open in 2008, is most excited about the championship, which is being held in his home country of England for the first time since 2017.
Golf legend Bernhard Langer on the other hand will not be taking part. The long-time Mercedes-Benz brand ambassador qualified for The Open by winning the 2019 Senior Open. Due to the tight schedule with the U.S. Senior Open taking place immediately before and The Senior Open immediately after The Open, Bernhard Langer has decided with a heavy heart not to tee off at Royal St George’s Golf Club. He wants to put his focus on the two senior major championships and primarily on his title defence at The Senior Open.