The ‘Home of Golf’ has become much more accessible

Mark McGowan

St Andrews Old Course

Mark McGowan

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The Old Course at St. Andrews is among the most famous sporting venues in the world. It’s golf’s Madison Square Garden, its Wembley Stadium, its Alp d’Huez. It’s the oldest of its kind, host to 30 Open Championships and on the bucket-list of just about every aspiring golfer.

Whilst some of the world’s most popular public tracks charge an arm and a leg for a tee-time, The Old Course is playable for a shade under £300 in high season – far from cheap, but reasonable in comparison – however, such is the demand for tee-times on any given day that a ballot is held two days prior to determine who gets to tee it up on the storied links.

Well, there’s good news for anybody who fancies taking the aggressive line over the hotel from the 17th tee; you can. And you don’t have to pay £300 or visit Eastern Scotland to do so.

Partnering with Toptracer, St. Andrews’ Old Course is available to play virtually at more than 750 Toptracer locations worldwide.

Danny Campbell, Commercial Director for St Andrews Links, explains: “There is no question that Toptracer is the dominant force in range technology. They literally invented the space and as a result reinvented the range experience. It’s clear that through this wealth of experience, they’ve come to understand operator challenges, how to transform practice areas into experiential destinations and how to build a seamless platform that provides a valuable experience to all golfers.

Since installing Toptracer technology at their practice facilities in August, St. Andrews have seen more than one million balls hit using the radar system, and each Toptracer location provides valuable data and real-time feedback to players via the Toptracer app which can easily be synced with the specific bay you’re occupying.

Ben Sharpe, President at Toptracer, commented on the landmark opportunity: “We are delighted that the partnership between Toptracer and St Andrews Links has begun so successfully. Our aim is to encourage more people to play and help range owners improve their business, and it’s exciting to see The Home of Golf put their stamp of approval on Toptracer Range. We’re delighted to hear about the improvements St Andrews Links have seen since install, and it’s yet another example of how Toptracer Range is transforming the driving range experience.

“Furthermore, bringing arguably the world’s most famous golf course, the Old Course, to the world’s number 1 range technology on an exclusive basis means that more golfers than ever before will have access direct from their bay in any of our 750 sites across 31 countries worldwide.”

As the days get shorter and the weather colder, sodden fairways rapidly lose their appeal, but hi-tech ranges are a game changer for serious golfers and casual players alike.

I’ll be paying a visit soon.

And I know which course I’m playing first.

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