Ryder Cup – Impending economic fiasco or showcase for Ireland?

The Ryder Cup tees of Friday at the K Club in Kildare with mixed reports coming out as to whether the investment was worth it and if it will be good for Ireland’s image abroad.

Following claims that some golf clubs have “doubled” their rates for the event, American Ambassador to Ireland James Kenny has already suggested Americans would be loathe to return to Ireland if they are overcharged.

Meanwhile, Anderson Economic Group (AEG), working with Dublin-based Amárach Consulting, estimates the Ryder Cup will bring €43 million into the Irish economy as opposed to the €130 million predicted by Fáilte Ireland.

There has also been the criticism that Ireland, not used to holding international golf events, blows its own trumpet and strictly targets the US market, while Scotland, the home of golf no less, is breaking into new markets such as China and Russia.

On the other hand, Scotland’s First Minister, Jack McConnell, sees Ireland as a major rival to its 500-million euro golf industry so the country must be doing something right. Scotland will send senior observers to the K Club as part of the country’s plans to put in a bid to host the event in 2014.

One of the sponsors, Bord Bia, also see the event as a major coup for Ireland. Chief executive Aidan Cotter said the message for the Ryder Cup is that the brand, Ireland the Food Island, highlights the capability, export capacity and range of innovative products of the industry.

“Of central importance amongst the international visitors are the 300 influential food buyers that we have invited from key export markets across the globe,” he said.

  • I can tell you that if the weather that’s shown the t.v. here this weekend bears any resemblance to what we’ve had in north Leinster today, it will be a serious set back to the cause of Irish tourism.

    Genuinely, I think the economic benefits of this weekend’s golf is one massive over-selling job some in the government. And, it’s not the business of the American ambassador to tell business owners how to charge their customers.

  • Brendan

    I would have thought Americans would have been delighted to see how Ireland Inc. has rejected the solialist policies that the USA see as communism.
    Now we have fully embraced pure undiluted capitalism as exported worldwide by the American Republican Party.
    I hope there are biblical floods for the Ryder Cup as I can’t stand the game (note it’s not a sport) myself.

  • brill


  • Mick

    The very best of luck to the USA in the forthcoming Ryder cup in the EUssr state of Ireland!.

  • Patrique

    The American Ambassador was right, and it is bad enough the Ryder Cup being on SKY, which all true revolutionaries avoid like the plague,but now it is being held in Mr Smurfits back garden.

    I suspect he will do well out of it. I believe it is only 100 euro a pint in the beer tent at the course.

  • glen

    What eejit said that its the biggest sporting event ever held in Ireland-Don’t they know that the Irish League starts again this week?

    -Go on you Cock and Hens!!!

  • páid

    the beauty of golf is that it keeps so many boring bastards out of the way. Ye know who I mean, lads called Dessie who wear ‘slacks’ with an orange F tab on the arse pocket.

  • roger

    “What eejit said that its the biggest sporting event ever held in Ireland-Don’t they know that the Irish League starts again this week? ”

    I think there will be more than a couple of hundred (average football attendance) heading for the K club towards the end of the week.

  • Looking forward to the Ryder Cup. Pity its only being shown on Sky TV. It should be available on RTE also.

  • Oh, its just a stupid golf match anyway. If it were a real sport like baseball, I could see some publicity coming out of it.

  • “It should be available on RTE also.”

    I think RTE are already contracted to broadcast the World Watching Paint Dry Championship live from a garden shed in Tallaght – which is marginally more interesting.

  • Puzzled Jackeen

    I was amused by the headline in one of the papers that said the golfers’ jet was delayed for three hours to load 500 lbs. of tortilla chips!