29/09/2010 13:58
Understated style encouraged at Celtic Manor
With expected crowds running into the tens of thousands at this weekend’s Ryder Cup tournament, spectators have been issued with strict guidelines on behaviour, security and logistical issues to smooth their visit. A comprehensive ‘Spectators’ Guide’ offers advice to those making the journey to Celtic Manor, including a ban on certain types of clothing.
Keen to prevent the ‘ambush marketing’ stunts that are growing in popularity at other sporting events, the organisers have ordered visitors to the south Wales site not to wear garments featuring any kind of political slogan or advertising. Though this isn’t an attempt to refine the sartorial standards of the event, it will no doubt raise the bar when it comes to dressing appropriately. It might encourage visitors to opt for more understated styles, favoured by luxury clothing labels such as Canali, rather than the more brash logo-ed fashions produced by other brands.
A Ryder Cup spokesman estimated that round 45,000 people will arrive at the Twenty Ten course to watch the European Team’s bid to win back the Ryder Cup from the USA and “these restrictions, as itemised in the Spectators' Guide, can assist security staff and reduce the waiting time for the public.” Other items on the banned list include Frisbees, gazebos, in-line skates and – rather more traditionally, for those used to Golf Club etiquette – mobile phones.
There really are no words to describe the euphoria that swept the fairways of Celtic Manor this afternoon, as Colin Montgomerie’s embattled men reclaimed the Samuel Ryder Cup as their own. As the sun shone brightly over the picturesque Usk Valley, this lush pocket of south Wales saw a groundswell of European pride emerging from the sodden earth. The air was filled with raw emotion as complete strangers hugged and patted each other on the back. Tears streamed down the cheeks of grown men, who cheered with booming voices, and mothers clung to bewildered children who knew only that they had never before seen anything like this – and may never do so again.
History is being made in this, the 38th Ryder Cup. For some, they’ll be delighted this event is going down in the record books: for others, they might prefer to banish the memories and move on....
For the fans, the key lesson from yesterday’s shenanigans was to think carefully about their attire so they could survive the sporting marathon. The merchandise pavilion in the tented village has virtually sold out of waterproof gear, and supplies of the official Ryder Cup umbrellas were gone before a ball was hit in anger. So, spectators came prepared in all manner of garb, to show their allegiances, while somehow keeping dry and warm.
As European Team Captain Colin Montgomerie’s predecessor, Sir Nick Faldo waved goodbye to the Ryder Cup in the Kentucky sunshine two years ago, and quipped: “See you in Wales – and bring your waterproofs.”
While the US and European Teams battle it out on the fairways at Celtic Manor, one newlywed couple in the crowd is flying the flag for both teams ....
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