PGA European - Alfred Dunhill Links Championship Preview
From The Sports Network

DATES: Thursday, October 2nd through Sunday, October 5th
SITE: St. Andrews Golf Club (Old Course), St. Andrews, Scotland
         Carnoustie Golf Club (Championship Course), Carnoustie, Scotland
         Kingsbarns Golf Links, St. Andrews, Scotland
COURSE ARCHITECT: St. Andrews - Old Tom Morris (1863)
         Carnoustie - Allan Robertson (1842), Old Tom Morris (1867),
         James Braid (1926), James Wright (1937)
         Kingsbarns - Kyle Phillips (2000)
PAR: 72
YARDAGE: 7,279 (St. Andrews Golf Club)
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 4 376 Yds10 - Par 4 380 Yds
2 - Par 4 453 Yds11 - Par 3 174 Yds
3 - Par 4 397 Yds12 - Par 4 348 Yds
4 - Par 4 480 Yds13 - Par 4 465 Yds
5 - Par 5 568 Yds14 - Par 5 618 Yds
6 - Par 4 412 Yds15 - Par 4 456 Yds
7 - Par 4 390 Yds16 - Par 4 423 Yds
8 - Par 3 175 Yds17 - Par 4 455 Yds
9 - Par 4 352 Yds18 - Par 4 357 Yds
36 3,603 Yds36 3,676 Yds
PAR: 72
YARDAGE: 7,412 (Carnoustie Golf Club)
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 4 406 Yds10 - Par 4 466 Y
2 - Par 4 463 Yds11 - Par 4 383 Y
3 - Par 4 358 Yds12 - Par 5 504 Y
4 - Par 4 412 Yds13 - Par 3 176 Y
5 - Par 4 415 Yds14 - Par 5 514 Y
6 - Par 5 578 Yds15 - Par 4 472 Y
7 - Par 4 410 Yds16 - Par 3 248 Y
8 - Par 3 183 Yds17 - Par 4 461 Y
9 - Par 4 478 Yds18 - Par 4 485 Y
36 3,703 Yds36 3,709 Y
PAR: 72
YARDAGE: 7,150 (Kingsbarns Golf Links)
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 4 414 Yds10 - Par 4 387 Y
2 - Par 3 200 Yds11 - Par 4 471 Y
3 - Par 5 516 Yds12 - Par 5 606 Y
4 - Par 4 415 Yds13 - Par 3 148 Y
5 - Par 4 426 Yds14 - Par 4 366 Y
6 - Par 4 337 Yds15 - Par 3 200 Y
7 - Par 4 455 Yds16 - Par 5 565 Y
8 - Par 3 168 Yds17 - Par 4 474 Y
9 - Par 5 558 Yds18 - Par 4 444 Y
36 3,489 Yds36 3,661 Y
Annual:  14th
Television:  Golf Channel - Thursday/Saturday -- 8 a.m.-12 p.m. (et),
  - Sunday -- 7:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. (et)
Defending Champion:  David Howell
Runner-Up:  Peter Uihlein
Tournament Record:  265 (David Howell, Peter Uihlein, 2013)
54-Hole Record:  196 (Branden Grace, 2012; Peter Uihlein, 2013)
36-Hole Record:  127 (Branden Grace, 2012)
Course Record:  62 (Victor Dubuisson, George Coetzee, 2012 - St. Andrews)
  60 (Branden Grace, 2012; Peter Uihlein, 2013 - Kingsbarns)
  64 (Alan Tait, 1994; Colin Montgomerie; 1995; Raphael
  Jacquelin, 2003; Steve Stricker, Peter O'Malley,
  Paul Lawrie, Richard Green, 2007 - Carnoustie)
Total Purse:  $5,000,000
Share:  1st Place - $800,000; 2nd Place - $533,330; 3rd Place - $300,480
2013 Finish
David Howell *265Garth Mulroy268
Peter Uihlein265Five players at269
Shane Lowry266
Tom Lewis266
Tommy Fleetwood267

* - Won in Playoff

Past Alfred Dunhill Links Championship Winners
YearWinner (Score) -- Runners-Up
2013*David Howell (265) -- Peter Uihlein
2012Branden Grace (266) -- Thorbjorn Olesen
2011Michael Hoey (266) -- Rory McIlroy
2010Martin Kaymer (271) -- Danny Willett
2009Simon Dyson (268) -- Rory McIlroy, Oliver Wilson
2008*Robert Karlsson (278) -- Martin Kaymer, Ross Fisher
2007Nick Dougherty (270) -- Justin Rose
2006Padraig Harrington (271) -- Anthony Wall, Bradley Dredge, Edward Loar
2005Colin Montgomerie (279) -- Kenneth Ferrie
2004*Stephen Gallacher (269) -- Graeme McDowell
2003Lee Westwood (267) -- Ernie Els
2002*Padraig Harrington (269) -- Eduardo Romero
2001Paul Lawrie (270) -- Ernie Els

* - Won in Playoff

NOTE:Formerly known as dunhill links championship (2001-05).

Top Contenders in the Field
David HowellT-5T-37mcmcT-60mcT-8mcT-34Won
Peter Uihlein---------------------------2nd
Shane Lowry---------------mcT-53T-45T-34T-3
Tommy Fleetwood---------------------T-5T-55T-5
Martin Kaymer---------T-15T-2---WonT-30T-34T-7
Charl SchwartzelmcmcT-22mcT-13mc---T-9T-66T-7
Ernie ElsT-7---5thT-6mcT-26T-22T-53T-34T-17
Julien Quesne------------------mc---mcT-20
Joost Luiten------------T-40mcT-58T-9T-47T-24
Michael Hoey------mc------T-19mcWonmcT-26
Padraig HarringtonmcT-3WonT-8T-13T-26T-178thT-29T-40
Richard SterneT-23T-41T-15T-32T-52---------mcT-50
Branden Grace---------------mc------WonT-59
Stephen GallacherWonT-7mcmcT-24---T-17mcT-5mc
Simon DysonT-29T-49T-8T-55mcWonT-5T-9mcmc
Victor Dubuisson------------------mcT-27T-5---
Rory McIlroy---------3rdT-8T-2T-532nd------
Ryan Palmer------------------------------
Sports Network Selections

Pick to Win - Joost Luiten
Darkhorse - Eddie Pepperell
Last Week's Pick to Win (Europe) - Won
Last Week's Darkhorse (NA) - NA
The European Tour remains in the home of golf, Scotland, this week for the 14th annual Alfred Dunhill Links Championship. Four members of the victorious European team from the Ryder Cup at Gleneagles are in the field - Rory McIlroy, Martin Kaymer, Victor Dubuisson and Stephen Gallacher. European captain Paul McGinley is also teeing it up this week.

World No. 1 McIlroy was 2-1-2 last week at the Ryder Cup. He crushed American Rickie Fowler in the Sunday singles, 5 & 4. McIlroy has four wins this season, including the British Open and PGA Championship.

Kaymer was 1-1-2 last week at the Ryder Cup. He defeated Masters winner Bubba Watson in the singles, 4 & 2. Kaymer won the Players Championship on the PGA Tour and captured his second major title at the U.S. Open Championship.

The championship will be played over 72 holes of stroke play with one 18-hole round being played each day. The courses in the rotation are Carnoustie, the Old Course at St. Andrews and Kingsbarns. Professionals and amateurs are taking part in the 2014 event. Played in teams of two, comprising of one professional and one amateur, the competitors will play each of the three courses in rotation over the first three days with the final round being played over the Old Course at St. Andrews. After three rounds, the field will be reduced to the top-60 professionals, including those tying for 60th place, and the leading 20 teams. There will be two competitions running concurrently: An individual tournament for the professionals and a team competition, which will be comprised of the lower of the professionals and their amateur partner's score at each hole. Amateur men must have a recognized handicap of 18 or better that is verified by the player's home club. Amateur ladies must have a handicap of 24 or better. Celebrities expected to play this week are Michael Ballack, Hugh Grant, Tim Henman, Greg Kinnear, Huey Lewis, Damian Lewis and Kyle MacLachlan.

This tournament carries on the tradition of excellence set by the Alfred Dunhill Cup during the 16 years that it was played over the Old Course at St. Andrews, promising to attract leading names in golf, entertainment and business to share in the celebration of links golf at its best.

Last year, David Howell birdied the second playoff hole to defeat Peter Uihlein. Howell fired rounds of 63-67 on the weekend to catch Uihlein. The pair finished regulation at 23-under-par 265, then matched pars on the first playoff hole. It was the first victory for Howell on the European Tour since 2006.

In 2012, Branden Grace opened with a course-record 60 at Kingsbarns and went on to a wire-to-wire victory. Grace held off a charge from Thorbjorn Olesen and finished at 22-under 266 to secure his fourth European Tour win of 2012.

Michael Hoey finished strong in 2011 with three birdies in the last four holes to overtake McIlroy and win by two strokes. Hoey shot rounds of 66-66-66-68 to finish at 22-under 266 and capture his third career victory and second of 2011. Hoey, McIlroy and Graeme McDowell finished first, second and third in 2011. It represented the first time in European Tour history that three players from Northern Ireland finished in the top three at the same event.

Kaymer fired a 6-under 66 in the final round to come from behind and win his third consecutive tournament in 2010. The German started the run with his first major title at the PGA Championship, then won the KLM Open almost a month later. Include his participation in Europe's Ryder Cup victory and it was an extremely successful 2010 for Kaymer. He finished this event at 17-under 271 to win by three strokes over Danny Willett for his eighth European Tour title.

In 2008, Robert Karlsson made a birdie on the first playoff hole to beat Kaymer and Ross Fisher. Karlsson rolled in a 4-foot birdie putt on St. Andrews' historic 18th green for his second win in four weeks and his ninth career title on the European Tour. Karlsson closed with a 7-under 65 in the final round, the lowest final round by a winner in tournament history.

Padraig Harrington carded a 4-under 68 in the final round and ran away with his second title at this event in 2006. Harrington finished at 16-under-par 271, five clear of the field. The Irishman, who also won this title in 2002, was the only player in the field to card four rounds in the 60s.

There have been three albatrosses made at this event: Lee Westwood double- eagled the ninth hole at Kingsbarns in the third round in 2003, Steen Tinning made a deuce at the third hole at Kingsbarns during the third round in 2003 and Colin Montgomerie made the first double eagle at the third hole in the second round at Kingsbarns in 2002. When Westwood and Tinning made double eagles in 2003 in the third round, it marked the first time in European Tour history that two albatrosses were made in the same round of the same tournament.

The European Tour travels to Portugal next week for the Portugal Masters in Vilamoura, where David Lynn won the 2013 event.

09/30 16:47:17 ET

As of September 30, 2014, at 04:47 PM ET

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