5 December 2023

Richie recharging before looking out the passport again

Carbon's ambassador on the DP World Tour, Richie Ramsay, admits the end of the 2023 season was tinged with disappointment after narrowly missing out in the Race to Dubai.

But the Scot is planning to enjoy Christmas with his wife Angela and daughter Olivia before embracing fresh challenges in the New Year, with his own season starting with a string of tournaments in the Middle East.

“I suppose this is a time of year when people tend to reflect on the past 12 months before looking to the future - and golfers are no different.

“On the plus side, I had no difficulty retaining my Tour card, unlike a few years ago when it went down to the final putt of my season in Spain. It was nice not to have that hanging over me.

“I actually played really well generally at the Nedbank but I was very disappointed with my back nine in the final round because I was tantalisingly close to my goal for the season.

“It is all about fractions. But that’s why you play professional sport. The margins are so fine, that applies pressure and makes what you work for so much sweeter when you have some success.

“I had to withdraw from three tournaments, including Dubai and the Dunhill, because of injury and illness.

“That was frustrating. There’s no way I could have played but picking up points would have made all the difference in the rankings, and I’d now be reflecting on an amazing year.

“My back was giving me real problems in Dubai and in Kenya I was in bed for the best part of 48 hours. I’d played the first nine in 29 degrees and I was asking my caddie if he was cold because I was shivering.

“I was white as a sheet coming off the course. There was no way I could tee it up the next day.

“The Dunhill is always a nice one on home soil and illness forced me to withdraw. But as I’ve got older I have become more at ease with the things I can and can’t control.

“I remember Michael Jordan talking about when he was young, he had energy, speed and athleticism on his side. When he was older, he couldn’t match the younger guys on those counts but he had the knowledge and the ability to read stuff from years of experience.

“In my case I know I don’t have to hit hundreds of balls which grind on your body in trying to find little improvements here and there.

“I must admit it took me a few days to get over the disappointment of missing out on Race to Dubai. It would have been great to have Olivia and some friends there again for the season finale.

“I have had to get that out of my system. I had come so close to making the top 50, finishing at 55.

“But speaking to my long-time coach Ian Rae I realised the disappointment and annoyance I was feeling showed the competitive fire was still burning strong.

“My biggest worry would be playing badly and thinking it didn’t really matter.

“All sporting careers come to an end at some point but as long as my body can handle the practice needed to stay competitive, I want to push on. Ideally retirement will be on my terms.

“Looking to the year ahead it’s likely I will be having a six-week run at the start of the year so I will be building up in the gym over the next few weeks.

“The season has already got underway with events in Australia and South Africa but you have to give your body a chance to recharge, especially when you are getting older.

“It’s been good to see Scots doing well on Tour and I’ve always said we push each other on.

“For golf fans at home there is more interest in a tournament when Scots are up there competing and in the mix.

“The football team has done well qualifying for the Euros under Steve Clarke and I’ll certainly be more invested when the games come around in Germany next summer.

“In the meantime, I’d like to thank everyone for their support and wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Healthy and Prosperous New Year.”

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