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Published on : Saturday, June 25, 2016
Macdonald Hotels & Resorts, the UK’s largest independently owned hotel group, welcomed 147 school children from across the Scottish Highlands for a series of coaching clinics during the SSE Scottish Hydro Challenge, a European Challenge Tour event hosted at the award-winning Spey Valley Golf Course at the Macdonald Aviemore Resort.
Run in conjunction with Scottish Golf’s junior development programme ClubGolf, the golfing clinics took place on Thursday June 23 and Friday June 24, as part of Macdonald Hotels & Resorts’ on-going commitment to introduce more children to the game and increase participation numbers.
The engaging golf programme featured a variety of activities, including putting challenges, nearest the pin competitions and longest straight drive contests, alongside golf clinics delivered by Challenge Tour professionals Charlie Ford and Peter Whiteford who were on hand to offer advice throughout the two days.
Scottish Golf’s Deputy Chief Executive, Andy Salmon, explained: “This is a very special event for school children in the area, as it gives them the chance to meet a number of the professionals, get some great advice and see them in action.
“The young people have all had ClubGolf coaching at school so we are delighted they get this fantastic experience through our partnership with Macdonald Hotels & Resorts, which will hopefully inspire and encourage them to continue playing at their local golf club.
“We are also grateful to Macdonald Hotels & Resorts and the Challenge Tour for hosting our Scottish Golf Volunteer pro-am which gives us a chance to thank some of the people, many of whom are qualified ClubGolf coaches, for their time and dedication to the sport in their community.”
Macdonald Hotels & Resorts operates a number of junior initiatives across its network of venues, as well as working with European Tour professional and brand ambassador Stephen Gallacher, to support the Stephen Gallacher Foundation, which helps junior golfers maximise their potential through playing golf.
Keith Pickard, Group Director of Golf and Health & Fitness at Macdonald Hotels & Resorts, said: “Macdonald Hotels & Resorts is committed to developing grassroots golf, so it was particularly pleasing to see the real interest among all of the children taking part in the golf clinics during the Challenge Tour event.
“It is imperative to the future of game that we continue to work with partners such as Scottish Golf, to ensure that we are able to encourage the next generation of young golfers and hopefully we will see some of them competing on the Challenge Tour in the future.”
Macdonald Hotels & Resorts has hosted the SSE Scottish Hydro Challenge for ten years, with the European Challenge Tour event held at Macdonald Spey Valley Golf Course in Aviemore since 2009.
Notable winners of the SSE Scottish Hydro Challenge at Spey Valley Golf Course include Brooks Koepka, winner on The US PGA and European Tour and ranked in the top-20 of the Official World Golf Ranking and Andrew Johnson, winner of the 2016 Open de España on the European Tour.