Where to Stay: The Gleneagles Golf Resort
The PGA Centenary Course
The PGA Centenary Course at Gleneagles is just one of the three outstanding golf courses on offer at the prestigious Gleneagles golf resort. Not many venues in Europe can boast having three courses on-site, let alone three courses in any country’s top 100 golf courses.
The PGA Centenary course which was formerly known as the monarch course opened for play in 1993 and is reminiscent of the stadium course layout just like the stadium course at PGA Scottsdale. The Centenary is, in fact, the longest inland course in the whole of Scotland measuring over 7300 yards. Rest assured though with five different tee boxes to choose from the course is, in fact, playable for all ranges of handicaps.
A true test of golf is provided on the Centenary Course and has held two of the most prestigious tournaments in world golf in recent years. Team Europe secured a comfortable victory in the 2014 Ryder Cup beating the Tom Watson team from the USA 16½ points to 11½ securing third consecutive supremacy for team Europe between 2010 and 2014.
In more recent years the Centenary course has hosted the Solheim Cup and also saw a fantastic victory for the Catriona Matthew’s Ladies of Europe defeating Juli Inkster’s Team from the USA by a close margin of 14½–13½.
The PGA Centenary has been designed and remodelled by the master himself, Jack Nicklaus, and is his only design in the bony country of Scotland. Jack once stated that Gleneagles was “the finest parcel of land in the world I have ever been given to work with”.
Playing the Centenary Golf Course
The PGA Centenary Course begins by teeing off southeast towards the glen, propelling its way up the Ochil Hills to the summit of the pass below Ben Shee which joins it to Glendevon. The whole round you are surrounded with stunning scenery and a real sense of being somewhere very special.
To score well it is absolutely pivotal to make sure you do not leave any approach shots short as you will find the majority of all trouble in front of the greens.
The signature hole on the Centenary would be the Par 4 5th Hole named “Crookit Cratur” which is the hardest stroke index on the entire layout, A mid-length par 4 at 461 yards and a real test of skill. A very tight tee shot is required before navigating through a bottlenecked entrance to a green where anything short will be swallowed up by the lake just short of the hole. Walk away with a par on the 5th, and you have done exceptionally well.
The best score in competition on the Centenary was by Australian Adam Scott in the 2002 Scottish PGA Championships where the in-form Aussie scored an impressive 23 under par and fought off an illustrious field of golfers by 10 strokes.