Vehicles, spectators fight for space at Old Course

Tom Watson plays a shot from the fifth tee surrounded by spectators during the first round of the British Open.
Tom Watson plays a shot from the fifth tee surrounded by spectators during the first round of the British Open. ( Associated Press )

Sunday, July 18, 2010


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ST. ANDREWS, Scotland – In spite of being the oldest major championship, the British Open (first played in 1860) has one annoying modern characteristic.

This championship has a huge number of motorized vehicles zooming around the course – during the competition. With 43,000 spectators in attendance Saturday, the melee of golf fans and golf course vehicles created roadblocks and interrupted the smooth flow of people around the seaside layout.

Most of the vehicles are ordinary golf carts, but some are small trucks. They fight for use of the footpaths at St. Andrews just as the spectators do. What a mess.