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Trump Takes Turnberry

Whether you missed the big news this week or not, it is worth repeating: Donald Trump has bought Turnberry, the iconic golf resort and British Open venue on the west coast of Scotland. There seemed to be more coverage of Trump’s securing a deal with the PGA of America to host the 2022 PGA Championship at Trump National Golf Club in central New Jersey (where the 2017 U.S. Women’s Open, a USGA event, will be held) and the 2017 Senior PGA Championship at his club outside Washington, D.C. But Trump has had his eye on an Open Championship for years: Before starting construction on his course in northern Scotland, he met with the R&A reportedly about staging an Open there. He quickly learned that it doesn’t work like that, and despite the acclaim for Trump International Golf Links near Aberdeen, and Ireland’s Doonbeg, which he purchased just a few weeks ago, neither is likely to get on the Open rota any time soon. But Turnberry? It’s already held four Opens, the first in 1977 (the famous “duel in the sun” when Tom Watson outlasted Jack Nicklaus), making it the newest of that championship’s venues; Open sites have been announced through 2016, and while Turnberry isn't on the list yet, it should only be a matter of time. For a reported price of $63 million, Trump gets three courses (the Open-hosting Ailsa, the 18-hole Kintyre, and the 9-hole Arran), the spectacular 149-room hotel overlooking the Irish Sea, another jewel in his growing crown of golf properties (this will be number 17), and more deeply embedded in golf’s highest echelons. Should Augusta National be worried?

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