15 Sep 2019

The Course: The Ryder Cup is going back to Ireland

 ADARE MANOR – The Ryder Cup returns to Ireland after 20 years as the spectacular Adare Manor has been confirmed as the venue for the 2026 edition of the matches. 

Back in 2006 an Ian Woosnam-led European Team romped home to a record-equalling 18-9 victory at The K Club and Irish fans will be hopeful of a similar result at the revamped, outstanding course in County Limerick.

The Golf Course at Adare Manor has undergone a major overhaul after what was intended to be no more than tweaks by resort owner J.P. McManus with a few bunkers and some drainage improvements were extended to a full-blown operation.

“The Robert Trent Jones course was a wonderful course, I have to say,” said McManus. “But there were a few minor modifications that I thought should take place – such as bunkers that were in positions where I always seemed to be a frequent visitor, although I didn’t think they caught out any other players. I thought maybe we might excavate a few of them, or cover them in, or do something with them.”

After consultations with the likes of Padraig Harrington and Paul McGinley, McManus turned to the famed course designer Tom Fazio (Quail Hollow, Sea Island, Pinehurst No.4) for a discussion on improving the layout.

“It went in stages,” said McManus. “We got to the stage where we would try to do the best job that we could. We started moving greens slightly to let more light in, and then, suggesting that we should get the SubAir system. The more I was hearing the more it was growing on me, and I just wanted it to work. For me, it happened almost by accident. I didn’t have a great vision, but we ended up with a product I am very happy with.”

Every hole has been completely redesigned and reconstructed, using the very latest technology and innovations to help sculpt a challenging and captivating experience for any level of player – be it the elite members of both Ryder Cup teams or merely weekend warriors with enough money to book a tee time.

The greens are first in Europe to feature super-fine bentgrass – the first in Ireland to have the SubAir aeriation system, which removes excessive moisture to guarantee firm greens. Sand imported from Scotland fills the traps, of which there are only 41 – the fewest of any Tom Fazio course in the world. The course had previously hosted two editions of the Irish Open in 2007 and 2008, won by Harrington and England’s Richard Finch respectively.  We’ll have to wait and see if Adare Manor will host the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open in the years before The Ryder Cup.

Watch the official course video below:

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