Life is a lot easier when you play badly and then all of a sudden you get in contention and win one. No one gets on your back. When you finish runner-up seven times, everyone is asking, 'Why aren't you winning?' It's much more fun when you jump into a win out of the blue. It's a much tougher game when you play consistently well.

Off the Course

Entry Date:
Mar 24, 2011

The “Harrington Room”
Stackstown Golf Club is delighted to announce the official opening of the “Harrington Room.” Aimed at honouring the remarkable achievements of Ireland’s greatest golfer.

“We have been working towards this day since Padraig won his first Open Championship at Carnoustie in July 2007,” said Felix McKenna, Chairman of Council at Stackstown GC. “Now that the objective has been achieved, we view this as a proud day for our club. We see it as the members’ way of honouring Padraig and the Harrington family, including the late Paddy Harrington, who played such a key role in the club’s formative years.”

On driving into the club which nestles on a hilly perch in west Dublin, there is immediate evidence of pride in a local hero. The gable-end of the clubhouse proclaims: “Stackstown Golf Club. Proud of our 3 times major champion Padraig Harrington.”

Inside, visitors will find a conference room which has been transformed into an Aladin’s Cave of golfing memorabilia, covering all the key aspects of the player’s career. There is a display cabinet representing his amateur days and another cabinet dealing specifically with three Walker Cup appearances including a significant role in the 1995 victory at Royal Porthcawl.

Further along, a special cabinet contains mementos from Padraig's World Cup victory with Paul McGinley at Kiawah Island in 1997 and six Ryder Cup appearances, dominated by the record-breaking triumph at Oakland Hills in 2004. Then, an alcove is devoted to his three major championship victories containing replicas of Claret Jug & PGA Trophy before moving on to the final cabinet marking regular tournament wins on five continents.

The display includes blazers, crystal and trophy replicas, many of which had been stored by his mother, Breda, at her Rathfarnham home. Some items Padraig would probably prefer to forget, like copies of the 54-hole scorecards which gave him a five-stroke lead in the Benson and Hedges International at The Belfry in 2001. That was when he was disqualified on the morning of the final day after it had been discovered he failed to sign his first-round card. Their inclusion, however, reflects the player’s determination that the display would be a true representation of all aspects of his career.

From his childhood years, Stackstown GC has played a huge part in Padraig’s life. An early memory is of an occasion when sharp, autumn winds swept down from the Dublin Mountains on the 700 spectators gathered for the official opening of the club. It was September 1983 and an eager, young face in the crowd was that of a 12-year-old lad with a shock of black hair. By his own admission, he had little interest in legendary golfing figures, Christy O'Connor Snr and Peter Thomson, plying their craft for the pleasure of the assembled throng. He was captivated simply by the excitement of the occasion.

Almost 25 years later, as the reigning Open champion, Padraig was presented with the Association of Golf Writers Trophy by Thomson at Royal Birkdale, prior to his successful defence of the Open.