Article courtesy of Ladies European Tour
Thursday 29th April 2010 - Alison Nicholas played The Solheim Cup course at Killeen Castle in Co. Meath Ireland for the first time and said it was 'fabulous'.
The European Captain, due to lead the team for the second time when the 12th staging of the matches takes place from 23-25 September 2011, said: "It was great: a fabulous golf course. It's in great condition and I enjoyed it very much."Nicholas will have a more hands on role next year as the home captain and will make decisions about the golf course set-up.
Alison will also attend the AIB Ladies Irish Open, supported by Failte Ireland, taking place at Killeen Castle, from 6-8 August, the week after the Ricoh Women's British Open, this year. With a prize fund of €500,000 and scheduled during a free week on the LPGA calendar, the AIB Ladies Irish Open will provide the only opportunity for players from both sides of the Atlantic to test their skills on The 2011 Solheim Cup venue in a competitive environment and expects to draw a quality field of international competitors. "I'm looking forward to seeing the girls play in the AIB Ladies Irish Open," said Nicholas. "It's a great layout and it's going to be very challenging. The course is in great condition and I know they are going to make it even better for the AIB Ladies Irish Open and The Solheim Cup."
Killeen Castle, the ancestral home of the Earls of Fingal, sits in a wooded estate in 600 acres in Dunsany, County Meath. Set in the historic grounds of one of Ireland's oldest and finest 12th century Norman castles, the estate is home to a unique development of supreme quality residences positioned among the natural woodlands of the demesne and throughout which the magnificent Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course winds.
"The views of the castle are absolutely superb and every time you play a hole nearby its absolutely magnificent," Nicholas said. "I like the sixth hole, which is a 144-yard par-three, because it's surrounded by bunkers and you have to be very accurate with your shot in. I think that the 16th, 17th and 18th will be great finishing holes because they are challenging and tough. There is water on 16 and 17 and on hole-18 you've really got to position your drive well. Those holes should guarantee a thrilling climax to both events."
With the AIB Ladies Irish Open, supported by Failte Ireland, taking place in just over three months time, excitement about the event is growing apace and the organisers look forward to offering a typical warm Irish welcome to the finest golfers from all over the world.
The Solheim Cup General Information
The Solheim Cup is a biennial, trans-Atlantic team match-play competition featuring the best U.S.-born players from the Ladies Professional Golf Association (LPGA) Tour and the best European members from the Ladies European Tour (LET). The U.S. Team leads the competition, 8-3, and has never lost The Solheim Cup on home soil. In 2009, the Americans kept their untarnished home record intact at Rich Harvest Farms with a 16 to 12 final score against the Europeans. The 2011 Solheim Cup will be played from 23-25 September, 2011, at Killeen Castle, County Meath, Ireland. For more information, please log on to www.SolheimCup.com.
About Killeen Castle
Killeen Castle, the ancestral home of the Earls of Fingal, sits in a wooded estate in 600 acres in Dunsany, Co. Meath. Set in the historic grounds of one of Ireland's oldest and finest 12th century Norman castles, the estate at Killeen Castle is home to a unique development of supreme quality residences discreetly positioned among the natural woodlands of the demesne and throughout which the magnificent Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course winds. Jack Nicklaus, course designer at Killeen Castle, said: "As the course designer, I am proud to be part of what is happening at Killeen Castle. It is phenomenal, what with the castle as a focal point. You have wonderful facilities to stage The Solheim Cup or the Ryder Cup in the future. It is a very strong course and will be nicely matured for 2011."
Located just north of Dunshaughlin in the heart of Royal Meath overlooked by the ancient Hill of Tara, Killeen Castle is just minutes from the picturesque hamlet of Dunsany. Killeen Castle offers all the joys of true country living, yet it is only 35 minutes from Dublin International Airport and 45 minutes from Dublin city centre. The golfing facilities are augmented by a 30,000 sq ft stand alone modern purpose built clubhouse, with parking facilities in an old wall garden setting for 260 cars. In the context of holding The Solheim Cup, the venue provides ample room (500 acres) for public village and hospitality facilities, a television compound, grandstands and spectator traffic flow, all adjacent to the dramatic 18th hole. Killeen Castle is soon to be complemented by a luxury hotel and spa. For more information, visit the club's website, www.killeencastle.com.