On the eve of the 150th Open, Callaway has unveiled a very special and unique personal bag, designed by a young student from St Andrews, which will be used by its 34 players in this week’s tournament.
Budding artists from two schools in St Andrews – Madras College and Saint-Leonard – were commissioned by Callaway and St Andrews Links to design a St Andrews-inspired golf bag, and Iona Turner, 17, had her winning design chosen by Callaway executives and a team of staff professionals, from a list restricted by 10.
The Tour’s professional jury included Danny Willett, the 2021 Alfred Dunhill Links champion, and Min Woo Lee, who played The Old Course backwards last year to commemorate the 200th birthday of four-time Open winner Old Tom Morris.
As a continuation of the design challenge, larger-than-life sculptures from the final 10, celebrating the creative excellence of students from each school, were placed in various locations around St Andrews leading up to The Open.
These specially commissioned sculptures have formed a new attraction, The Big Bag Trail, a route from which locals and visitors can explore the city. It remains open until Sunday July 17.
Iona’s winning design is inspired by many of St Andrews’ iconic and recognizable landmarks including the famous Swilcan Bridge on the 18th hole of the Old Course, the colorful houses by the harbour, the historic cathedral (where Old Tom Morris is buried), and the town’s beautiful beachfront location.
After being selected as the winning artist, Iona said, “I am thrilled that my artwork was chosen. It was a fantastic experience to participate in this design project with my classmates. It will be a bit surreal to see my bag alongside some of the best golfers in the world, but I can’t wait.
Neil Howie, President and Managing Director of Callaway EMEA, added: “We have traditionally created limited edition Tour Bags for Majors, men and women, and we always take inspiration from the region in which the event takes place. While respecting the traditions of creating a bespoke Tour Bag, we recognized the opportunity to do something different in this special year for The Open.
“Engaging the local community in this way and reaching out to local students and doing something like this has been really unique. What’s great is that it’s so visible, and to think that Iona has the potential to see one of our staff professionals in the running, with his bag visible to so many people, is nothing short of phenomenal.
Neil Coulson, Managing Director of St Andrews Links, concluded: “Congratulations to Iona on behalf of all of us at St Andrews Links for her spectacular and colorful winning design for the Callaway 2022 July Major Bag. I’m sure it’s a proud moment for her and her family and it will be special for her to see the bag in action.
“The public response to The Big Bag Trail has been incredible and allowed us to engage with local schools and the St Andrews community ahead of what will be a truly memorable Open at the Home of Golf.”
Following the conclusion of The Open, the 10 larger-than-life sculptures from The Big Bag Trail will be auctioned at a special evening at the Tom Morris Bar & Grill at St Andrews Links Clubhouse on July 19, with all proceeds going to at CHAS (Children’s Hospices across Scotland) and Future Scottish Sportsmen (Changing Lives Through Sport).
This special auction, which will celebrate the community achievements of the Bag Design Contest and the Big Bag Trail, is also available to the public, through bidder registration, from a virtual link. HERE.
The auction will be chaired by television personality and auctioneer, Charles Hanson.