Wind and rain at the Open Championship? Good

When the wind howled and the rain came¬†down in sheets during the practice rounds at the recent Open Championship (or British Open if you prefer), most golf fans were delighted. We enjoy watching the world’s greatest players huddling under umbrellas and wiping their grips while their pants are flapping and their hats are blowing off. Conditions like that on our home course would certainly keep us from playing (unlike our Irish and Scottish cousins, who play through foul and fair weather alike), but foul weather keeps us glued to the television when it occurs in Scotland.
We are not sadists; we simply enjoy the change in scenery and weather that we see once a year in the British Isles — and, truthfully, we enjoy seeing the pros suffer a bit, the way we do. Wet, windy conditions seldom, if ever, occur at major U.S. golf tournaments. The U.S. tour is carefully scheduled to avoid bad weather, and when it does occur, it is most often in the form of thunderstorms, which cause the suspension of play because of life-threatening lightning. The first round of the 1970 U.S. Open at Hazeltine was one of the few instances of extremely bad weather without lightning at an American major. The winds gusted up to 40 miles per hour that day without rain, leading to many scores in the 80s, including Jack Nicklaus’s 81.
Lightning is apparently a rare phenomenon in Scotland, so the players slog on, no matter how beastly the conditions. Scores in the 80s under those conditions are routine — and a guilty pleasure for golf fans everywhere.
Wouldn’t it be nice if the PGA Tour stayed in Scotland, Ireland and England for a month each summer?

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