I enjoyed a walk around the seven new holes (under construction) with course designer Guy Smith, and those who love the Gowrie Farm experience have something to look forward to when they open. These will be holes 3 to 9. You don’t return to the clubhouse so a halfway house will be built at the ninth green. An intriguing mix of varied challenges with classic bunkering and creative undulating greens, including one modelled on the Road Hole at St Andrews. Smith likes replicating “template holes” (variations of famous holes), and he has a Sahara and a Pit among the seven. The “Pit” at North Berwick has an ancient metre-high stone wall guarding the green, and Smith has a low wall of rocks framing the left side of a medium par 4. It needs to be carried to find the green. The rocks were in the earth of the fairway, so removing them set his plan in motion. The new routing will mean a back nine which has three 3s, three 4s and three 5s (a la George GC). An 18-hole Gowrie Farm will be an exacting test but a fascinating one for those who love an older style of course design.