Carly Booth, one of the UK’s leading female golfers and top Scot at last week’s Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open, has ‘high hopes’ for her home Major this week when she plays in the Ricoh Women’s British Open at Kingsbarns on the Fife Coast.
Carly finished tied for 31st last week at Dundonald Links and she climbed to 18th on the 2017 Order of Merit. Her tendency to rise to the occasion when playing in Scotland, as proven by her win in the 2012 Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open, may serve her well this week.
She said: “I’ve played here a number of times and then I qualified for the British Open here in 2013 for the one at St Andrews. I do have fond memories here. The course is amazing, the greens are fantastic and it’s such a beautiful course. I would say the most picturesque and challenging hole is the par-3 14th.
“My golf was pretty solid last week. My putting let me down but I’ve been working hard on that. Obviously, I have high hopes being in Scotland for the British Open and I want to win, so that’s my goal this week.”
The 25-year-old from Crieff in Perthshire recently signed a multi-year deal to play on the Ladies European Tour with a Pink Volvik S4 golf ball and she added: “I now know which ball’s mine in the middle of the fairway! I quite like it and a lot of people have asked me if it’s weird to look at a pink ball but I’ve got used to it and I like the colour. I think it suits me a little bit and the performance I’ve had with the ball is great. I did a lot with Trackman before I started taking it out for tournament rounds, so I’m really pleased with how its performing.”
Carly became the youngest ever club champion in Britain when she won the title at Dunblane New aged 11 and she was the youngest ever Scot to qualify for the Ladies European Tour six years later. She won twice on the Tour in 2012 but she knows that to win in the Ricoh Women’s British Open, she will need to shoot low scores.
The course record at Kingsbarns is 60, 12-under-par, shot by South African Branden Grace in the opening round of the 2012 Dunhill Links Championship and equalled by Peter Uihlein in 2013. The winning scores in the men’s event, held at the venue since 2001, have typically been low, with Michael Hoey winning on 22-under in 2011.
However, Carly is unfazed. She said: “The course is playing really well at the minute. The fairways are wide and the greens are massive. It’s a very scoreable golf course. I think the weather is going to play a big part but if it’s like today, I can see a good few five or six unders.”
Carly tees off for her first round at 8.20am on Thursday and will be playing alongside Yukari Nishiyama from Japan and Azahara Muñoz from Spain, another multiple Ladies European Tour winner.