Spygate it is not, but Tom Watson is already trying to get any edge he can for the 2014 Ryder Cup, even though it’s still over a year away. While it might not have the intrigue of international espionage, Watson was doing everything in his power to get the scoop on Gleneagles, the site of next year’s Ryder Cup. Watson, the American captain, made a pit-stop at the course after the British Open in the hopes of picking up some valuable information. Unfortunately, the personnel at Gleneagles wasn’t about to give Watson the information he sought.
Apparently, he was looking to get the low down on possible pin placements for next year’s international team competition. That information was not readily accessible, however. Watson explained that he spent some time at the course, which hosts the Johnnie Walker Championship on the European Tour every year. “I said, ‘you wouldn’t mind getting me the pins for the Johnnie Walker Championship for the last five years, would you?’ They said, ‘yes, we would mind, so you’re not getting them! It was funny’.”
I’m going out on a limb and guessing that Watson didn’t really expect to be given any information. You never know unless you ask though, right? Considering the epic collapse of the American team at last year’s event, I applaud Watson for doing everything in his power to prepare for the tournament. I have a feeling that he will manage to track down those pin placements before too long.
Watson and European captain Paul McGinley appear to have a good, albeit competitive relationship – and neither of the men is willing to give up any information. “I kidded Paul about his team having an advantage due to the Johnnie Walker Championship being played at Gleneagles for a number of years but he just kind of smiled and said, ‘well, it is a home match, you know’. Paul is a fine man and I like his company,” Watson said. “I like the way he handles himself. He knows what the Ryder Cup is all about, like I do. I hope that we have a good match – and I hope the outcome is a little different this time.”
Theirs seems to be a relationship built upon mutual respect and admiration, which is going to make next year’s Ryder Cup even more intriguing – especially if Watson isn’t able to track down those pin placements.