Rolex & The Open: golf’s oldest Major
Traditionally contested in the United Kingdom during the third week of July, The Open is the fourth and final men’s Major. Associated with this competition since 1981, Rolex is today a privileged partner of world golf.
The partnership between Rolex and golf began in 1967 when Arnold Palmer became the sport’s first Testimonee. Since then, the brand has become Official Timekeeper and is a principal partner of many leading events and stakeholders in the game.
Inaugurated in 1860, The Open is played every year on a rotating roster of historical courses in the United Kingdom. The 151st edition takes place at Royal Liverpool Golf Club.
A renowned course
Located on the shores of the Irish Sea, the course first played host to the tournament in 1897, with this year marking the 13th time it stages golf’s original Championship. Rolex Testimonee Tiger Woods won his third Open there in 2006.
Tradition has it that The Open is always played on a links course; that is, one located by the sea, featuring sandy soil and few water hazards or trees. Unpredictable weather conditions mean the 156 players competing in the tournament each year need their fair share of fighting spirit, self-control and humility given the potential for heavy showers, strong wind gusts and even heatwave conditions.
With its unique past, the wild beauty of the coastal courses where it is played and its knowledgeable fans, The Open is forever etched in the history of world sport – from the duels of Bobby Jones and Walter Hagen in the 1920s to the battle between Tom Watson and Jack Nicklaus in 1977, or the tears of Tiger Woods upon winning his third trophy in 2006.
Rolex and golf: partners for more than half a century
Rolex enjoys a privileged relationship with golf, one founded on shared values: respect for tradition, responsibility, technical precision, the elegance of movement, the perpetual quest for excellence and a commitment to future generations. Today, the partnership between Rolex and golf extends to many areas of the sport: with governing bodies and world rankings, with the greatest names in international golf, and with the Major tournaments and global circuits – both men’s and women’s, professional and amateur, at senior and junior levels. Moreover, the brand has also championed the creation of: the Rolex Series, the finest tournaments on the DP World Tour; the Rolex Player of the Year Award which recognizes the best woman golfer on the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) circuit; and the Rolex Junior Players of the Year awards, which honour players aged 18 or younger, boy and girl, who perform best in a given season. Undeniably, Rolex has become “the partner watch of world golf”.
Rolex Testimonees and The Open
Among the many great golfers who belong to the prestigious family of Rolex Testimonees, several have won The Open: Gary Player, Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Tom Watson, Tiger Woods, Jordan Spieth, Francesco Molinari and Collin Morikawa.