Tuesday, January 10, 2012


Published in Scotland on Sunday
Andrew Coltart is relieved to have given up tour golf after a tough end to his career and can look back at successes such as a Ryder Cup appearance and Dunhill Cup win
Retirement is a relief to Andrew Coltart but he’s got plenty ahead of him,
At first glance, nothing much has changed. He looks and sounds the same: tall, dark and golfy. But closer and more prolonged inspection reveals an air of relaxation that had long been absent, a more ready smile and, for Andrew Coltart, a sense of relief that a losing struggle is finally over.
After two decades as a professional and 491 starts on the European Tour, the former Ryder Cup player has had enough. The Allianz Open Cotes d’Amor – Bretagne, a relatively anonymous Challenge Tour event back in June, was his last appearance. At the age of 41 he is officially retired from competitive golf.
“The hardest part has been not being competitive over the last few years,” he admits. “I lost my card again at the end of 2010 and another year on the Challenge Tour was tough. I was empty, absolutely empty. I still wanted to do well but it just wasn’t happening.
“So I had to look at the bigger picture. I was 40. I could keep doing what I was doing, or I could take a look at what else is out there for me. I chose the latter because the former offered no guarantees. Even if I got my card back, I’d be looking at very limited opportunities on the main tour in 2012. Fortunately, I found that I had options in other areas where I feel like I can contribute.”
Those other options include appearances as a studio expert on Sky Television’s coverage of the PGA Tour, stints on course for Radio Five Live at both the Open Championship and the Ryder Cup, some work with the Scottish Golf Union’s national squads and continuing involvement in tpegs.com, the burgeoning golf school business in which Coltart partners respected swing coach Gary Nicol.
All in all, there’s a lot going on for the double European Tour winner, enough that he can move on from the latter stages of his playing career. A period which he describes as “torture”.
“My lack of competitiveness was the result of a few factors,” he explains. “The new technology in golf has never been a help to me. I just don’t create enough clubhead speed to take advantage of the big-headed drivers and the new balls.
As someone once told me, you can almost read the name of the shaft on my downswing!
“And the courses these days are set up to benefit those who hit the ball miles. Length is everything. The ability to shape shots and hit different types of shots isn’t nearly as important as it once was. None of which suited me. Over the last decade or so, my strengths have become less important and my weaknesses have been exposed.



Andrew was the top amateur in Scotland before he turned and had a pretty successful professional career too. Keep swinging and being competitive with the occasional game for a fiver over the next few years then have a crack at the Oldies Tour when you turn 50! Best of luck....
Davie McIntosh



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