Friday, July 15, 2011

The Big Yellow Scoreboard, An Open Tradition

   One of the many cool things about the Open Championship is the giant yellow scoreboard that stands sentry over the 18th gren at whereever the event is played, a landmark as familiar to golf fans as the Hogan bridge on the 12th hole at Augusta National.

   It's a testament to tradition rather than technology, its information passed by hand through letters and numbers, rather than via LED readouts. The closest thing to new technology on the big board is a Rolex clock that gives the time in the timeless manner that only a Rolex can.

   The leader board is posted by hand, which means it takes a few moments to rearrange things when someone runs up or down the board. Not only does it post where the leaders stand against par, it tells fans how many holes they've played in the tournament rather than in their round. Lucas Glover, for example, was 4-under par through 34 holes Friday then safely parred in to saty there.

   It lists the pairing currently playing the hole and the next pairing in case you've dropped your pairing sheet while traipsing through the dunes.

   And, at the end of each Open, there's a message congrulating the champion golfer of the year and promising to see everyone again next year, which in 2012 means Royal Lytham & St. Annes. Not everyone at Royal St. George's will be back for the championship next year but the big yellow scoreboard will be there.

  Like always.