PORTSALON GOLF CLUB had reason to celebrate recently after confirmation it had secured its highest ever position in the prestigious Golf Digest Ireland Top 100 Courses in Ireland.
Portsalon has been steadily climbing up the list in recent years, largely down to a sustained commitment to self-improvement undertaken by the council and greens staff at the club. ‘
The hard work and commitment paid rich dividends once more as Portsalon took its place at No.22 in the rankings for 2016 – up one place from the year just past.
The rise of Portsalon has coincided with the club partnering with former European Ryder Cup captain Paul McGinley’s Golf Course Design team to enhance the playing experience for members and visitors alike on the iconic Fanad links.
Since a major revamp of Portsalon by renowned course designer Pat Ruddy in 2000, the club has continuously strived to subtly improve this founding member of the Golfing Union of Ireland.
Paul McGinley and his team have been working closely with Portsalon Golf Club since 2011 and in congratulating the club on their 2016 standing, he suggested that further improvement in the Golf Digest Rankings are “a very attainable goal” for the club to aim at.
Paul Armstrong, Captain of Portsalon, attributes the success of the club to the vision, hard work and commitment of Links Superintendent Johnny Shields and his team in working alongside their partners at Paul McGinley Golf Course Design as well as the backing received from Portsalon’s members.
McGinley believes Portsalon has the capability to push itself towards the top ten in Ireland, a dream that is shared by the club.
Paul Armstrong said this week: “We look forward to continuing to work together and share Paul’s ambition that someday soon we will be a top ten course.”
Johnny Shields has been head of greens staff at Portsalon since 2007. Under his leadership, the club have climbed the Golf Digest Rankings from No.75 to their current position on the cusp of the top 20.
Whilst implementing the changes advised by the McGinley team, the greens staff have also incorporated a series of aesthetic improvements that further enhance the ‘Portsalon experience’.
Membership is open at Portsalon with extremely competitive rates for both beginners and experienced golfers alike.
Despite the rain that battered Donegal during Storm Desmond last weekend, the links at Portsalon showed its resilience in remaining open for play throughout and it prides itself on providing all-year-round golf.
This jewel in the Irish golfing crown hosts weekly Open competitions (Wednesday and Saturday, Seniors – Friday) where visitors can enjoy 18-holes at surprisingly reasonable and very competitive rates.