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Princes club pro qualifies for The Open on home course
June 30, 2011

Troon Golf, the leader in upscale golf course management, development and marketing is delighted to announce the success of club professional Francis McGuirk in qualifying for The Open Championship around his home course at Princes Golf Club, Kent. McGuirk, who only made it through to Final Qualifying via a last-hole eagle during Regional Qualifying, utilised his local knowledge to shoot a 36-hole total of 5-under par around the Troon Golf managed facility, which is owned by his father Michael. Francis will compete in The Open Championship at neighbouring Royal St Georges Golf Club from the 14 th - 17 th of July, when golf's oldest championship returns to Sandwich Bay.

As a former Open Championship venue, the Troon Golf managed Princes Golf Club has a rich history with golf's oldest championship. The 1932 edition of the event was won at Princes by golfing legend Gene Sarazen, the same week he unveiled golf's first-ever sand wedge. A successful refurbishment program has further enhanced the historic Sandwich Bay course in preparation for this year's Local Final Qualifying event, which saw McGuirk beat off competition from some of golf's finest players, including 2005 U.S. Open Champion Michael Campbell. The McGuirk family has owned Princes Golf Club since the 1970's and Francis has been attached to the club ever since, spending many a day working and practicing around the picturesque links.

"It is hard to describe this feeling. I have played thousands of rounds of golf at Princes Golf Club and have kept a close eye on the developments that have been made over the last 18 months, but to qualify in my own back yard is a dream come true." commented 37 year-old Francis. "The course was in great condition, and the fact it was the only one of four Local Final Qualifying venues to complete play following the rain delays, is testament to the organisation of the R&A as well as the refurbishments that have taken place."

Princes Golf Club will have numerous initiatives taking place during The Open Championship and will be welcoming golfers to play during the week. Recent bunker renovations were officially opened by double Open Championship winner Padraig Harrington last month, which have enhanced the playing experience of the historic coastal course.

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