And the Tee It Up With Rory winner is…

After three months and more than 20,000 entries there could be only one winner. Join us in congratulating (and at the same time envying) Ash – our Tee It Up With Rory competition winner. The 32-year-old London-based actor, originally from Northern Ireland, and his friend Richie will play three unforgettable rounds at Castlerock Golf Club and Roe Park Resort, culminating in a round at world-famous Royal Portrush with Rory McIlroy. They will also receive a brand new set of TaylorMade clubs each.
We spoke to Ash about his golf game, growing up in Northern Ireland and his anticipation for this golfing trip of a lifetime…

  • How often do you play golf? What’s your favourite course?

It depends on my schedule. If I’m free I’ll play once a week or more, if I can. But if I’m busy it’s one round per month or fewer. It’s much more difficult to get to the course in London than in Northern Ireland. My favourite course is probably The Valley at Royal Portrush. I never tire of it, there’s a great deal of variety and it’s visually stunning.

  • How long have you been playing?

I started when I was 15 but gave up very quickly. I had no patience and found it very frustrating. I took it back up again six years ago.

  • Who are you bringing?

My mate Richie – a former six handicap, friend of 27 years and the man who got me into golf. I’m already regretting not bringing along a 36 handicapper to make me look better but it’s his birthday on 3 October, so…

  • Have you ever met a pro golfer?

Only once and she had just turned professional, which was exciting. I met her at a bar in London on a stopover to an event abroad but I’m afraid I can’t remember her name.

  • What are you most excited about?

Has to be Rory. Playing a round with a four-time major winner and a former world number one will be pretty special, especially since he’s from Northern Ireland. The fact it’s on the redesigned Dunluce Links, and my best mate is coming along, is a huge bonus!

  • What’s your favourite memory on the golf course?

It’s as recent as June – the 17th hole of a round on the Isle of Arran when we were one down with two to play. I had a 40 foot putt that I had no right whatsoever to make. It somehow went in, we won the hole, went absolutely crazy… and then promptly lost the 18th…sums golf up really.

  • Is this your first trip to the Royal Portrush?

I’ve played Dunluce once in my life, but have played the Valley a handful. Any time I get back home I try to see the North Coast and play the Valley.

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