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Trump International Links Stirs Up Debate in Scottish Parliament; 2010 PGA Champion Martin Kaymer With Some Golf Lessons

Aired May 3, 2012 - 12:30:00   ET



SHANE O'DONOGHUE, HOST, CNN LIVING GOLF (on camera): Never before has one man and his golf course stirred such passion. But now, the Trumps International Golf Link is built, it will open this summer. And thousands are already queuing to play, what has been described by many, as one of the greatest courses in the world.

But now, a new brawl engulfs the project and it reaches right to the top of the Scottish government. Welcome to LIVING GOLF.

On this month's LIVING GOLF, Donald Trump.

DONALD TRUMP, CHAIRMAN AND PRESIDENT OF TRUMP ORGANIZATION: It's truly a masterpiece and to a large extent, it was built by God.

O'DONOGHUE: His critics and his course.

Plus Martin Kaymer shows us how to hit the fair way, time after time.

And the prior tradition behind this year's open championship, at Royal Lytham and Saint Annes.

When Donald Trump was finally given permission to build a golf course, hotel and villas, on and around protected June land just to the north of Aberdeen, the arguments didn't stop. Two years on and the championship course is virtually finished.

But now the rest of the project is once again in doubt and at the heart of a national debate. We've returned here to see what's been stirring such feelings on and off the course.

O'DONOGHUE (voice-over): The latest brawl was over a proposal to build some of these in a wind turbine testing center just off the coast in Aberdeen Bay within sights of Trump International Links.

Donald Trump has been waging its stridulous campaign against the plan, and when we sat down with him, he was clearly in no mood to back down.

TRUMP: Scotland is an area that is magnificent. It has one of the most beautiful coastlines in the world. And to destroy the tourism industry in Scotland, which will do, will be very bad.

So, I have put in a very strong objection because they're thinking about building an extremely ugly wind farm, down the coast from my course. You will be looking at it.

O'DONOGHUE (on camera): Some critics say that it's hypocritical that you should develop a course like you are doing in protective June's land and yes, complained about the construction of windmill farms, you know off the coast.

What's your response to that?

TRUMP: Well, you know if wind was a good form of energy, and it was inexpensive and there were bigger assets to it, I could understand. But wind, when you put this ugly, industrial turbine standing up all over Scotland, I think it's a very bad thing for Scotland.

And I will see what happens. I will sue if they try to put it in advance to -- I will be suing Scotland and we'll see what happens. But I built what is already being considered and you see from the reviews yourself, this isn't me, this is great architectural critics.

Already being considered, perhaps the greatest course anywhere in the world. I don't want to have an industrial wind farm, looming over it.

O'DONOGHUE: Now, when most Americans visit Edinburg, they're here to see the castle or the beautiful Hollywood palace. But when Donald Trump is in town, he's here to see the Scottish parliament, and to give them the benefits of his strong opinions.

TRUMP: If the U.K. decides that they're not going to further subsidize, all of these windmills. Scotland, will go broke.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I'm sorry but I don't think you quite answered my question.

O'DONOGHUE (voice-over): Mr. Trump says he was given assurances by the previous Scottish government and the current first minister, Alex Simons, that no wind farm will be built off the coast in Aberdeen. That's caused a huge stir.

UNDENTIFIED MALE: Mr. Trump, did the first minister lie (INAUDIBLE) to you and if so, can you proof it?

TRUMP: I never like to use the word lie, but certainly they told me there would be no wind farms.

O'DONOGHUE: It's particularly sensitive as not only did the government overrule the local council to allow the course to be built on the Junes, but also it's firmly committed to increasing the amount of renewable energy, in Scotland.

MURDO FRASER, FORMER DEPUTY LEADER, SCOTTISH CONSERVATIVE PARTY: I think people right across the political spectrum, welcomed Mr. Trump's investment. But of course, government in power would have to draw a balance. We cannot be held to ransom in terms of the policy, By the views of one individual.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: It's my home, I've stayed here for 43 years now.

O'DONOGHUE: Before the hearing, a long time critic of Donald Trump and his development screened his future film in the Scottish parliament.

ANTHONY BAXTER, DIRECTOR, YOU'VE BEEN TRUMPED: It looks like, he's using the wind farms as an excuse to pull the plug on the whole thing. The rest of the development probably would never happen because it makes no economic sense.

O'DONOGHUE: The blend of Donald Trump's wind farm and Alex Simons, who's both Scotland's leader and the local member of parliament, is certainly a heavy mix. Ensuring that this particular wind farm proposal, is now the most high profile in the country.

Those on both sides of the argument took advantage of the media spotlight, on the American billionaire.

And nor is Donald Trump the only golf developer who's objecting to wind farms in Scotland. Back off the coast towards Aberdeen lies the home of golf Saint Andrews.

Work is about to start on a new private members club on the outskirts of the old great town. And here too, they obliged to stop plans to build two sets of turbines in the area.

PAUL McPHALL, SAINT ANDREWS INTERNATIONAL GOLF CLUB LTD: It's interesting, I was in southern Spain recently playing golf. A part of that country where golf is a very big contributor like -- even this puddle, this food stuff and yes there are wind farms, but could you see them from the golf courses?

No you couldn't. So siting those well away from golf courses, so the players and their guests are not disturbed by these monstrosities.

O'DONOGHUE: Back in Aberdeen, no work has yet started on the rest of the Trump development. So if as many suspect, the Scottish government gives the go ahead for the turbine testing field. What are the prospects for the hotel, the villas and the jobs they will bring to the area.

And for that matter, the course.

TRUMP: If they build a wind farm, I'm certainly not going to build a hotel looking into the guts of an industrial machine, that looks horrible.

O'DONOGHUE (on camera): Are you then not spoiling your own investments?

TRUMP: Maybe. I mean we'll see what happens. I find it hard to believe, that the leaders of Scotland could be so stupid as to destroy one of the great environments of the world, by putting these wind turbines all over the place.

O'DONOGHUE: Very briefly, the business plan you're confident, that it stocks up?

TRUMP: Well you know, again the business plan. I can do many things that are better business plan. I'm doing this because I have the kind of money that you can do it. You can't do this if you're poor.

So it's not really a business plan. This is a plan, of like somebody that buys a great painting. This is a great piece of art and that's why I did it.

O'DONOGHUE: So your aspirations now, what are they?

TRUMP: Well, I have no aspirations. I have built a great canvass, I've built a great course. If the Ryder Cup is interesting, if the Royal and Ancient is interested for an open, that will happen. I mean there's no question that it will happen.

I might not be around, but there's no question that that will happen.

O'DONOGHUE: If it's early days, have you set any event in motion at all? Have you had conversations with governing bodies?

TRUMP: Well, we have Savvy(ph) Jones, who's a great gentleman and as you know, he's in charge of the Ryder Cup. And he said it's one of the great courses. He couldn't have been nicer.

It's truly a masterpiece, it's a great piece and to a large extent, it was built by God. I mean these Junes are -- there's no place like them on earth.

O'DONOGHUE: What gives you most satisfaction about what has been created here?

TRUMP: Well, I think I've been able to take the best canvass of all, and get something truly wonderful built on it. And when you take your tour, I think you would say, like everyone else that sees it, you know Trump maybe right.

This maybe the greatest golf course anywhere in the world.

O'DONOGHUE: Donald Trump, thank you very much.

TRUMP: Thank you very much.


O'DONOGHUE: Welcome back to LIVING GOLF, on a windswept north east of Scotland. Now whatever the arguments around Trump International Links, on one thing, virtually everyone who has seen it, is united.

This is an incredible golf course. It doesn't open to the public for another couple of months. But we've been shown around by the man whose vision it is. The designer, Martin Hawtree.

MARTIN HAWTREE, DESIGNER, TRUMP INTERNATIONAL LINKS: My wish was to design a golf course which just develop from the views of Aberdeen. I wasn't imposing a huge amount on the land, trying to make golf course emerge from the Junes. And so forwardly speaking we have followed the June's formations.

The passage from the 13th green to the 14th team, which, something which was very special to me. Where you move to a very narrow (INAUDIBLE) through the links, through primary Junes.

And then suddenly, as you turn, the whole of the ocean opens up to you.

The third hole is the path through, it plays down towards the sea, the sea behind. It's changed a bit now because this June system here, has actually grown up in the last three years. And one of the things that I wanted was to start low.

You would see many very high tees on this course. Spectacular view, but I wanted a number of low tees. And so I was playing down, I did not want to go up to a high tee, and it will just fall down again.

O'DONOGHUE: Martin, there are surprises once you get on to every tee. First of all, you can't see the tees when you look back from the green. So now we're on another tee, what hole is this?

HAWTREE: This is the second, and this hole was found for me by the Di Spaniel(ph), a former project director. And the Di Spaniel(ph) was up here, looking. I came up here, that's the tip, that's the hole.

O'DONOGHUE: Wow, so a little dog literally was staring in that direction?

HAWTREE: Led me to this tee.

O'DONOGHUE: And is there a particular strategy that you would encourage people to employ on this particular hole?

HAWTREE: I hope they just get it on the green.


O'DONOGHUE: Oh, big shot.

HAWTREE: Good shot.

O'DONOGHUE: I think I needed it more club mark-up.

HAWTREE: We had to find a way of stabilizing what we are doing.

ESIE O'MAHONY, SOL GOLF BUILDERS, TRUMP INTERNATIONAL LINKS: Sand, it can be easy to work in because it's always dry. It's very difficult to work on top of because it moves all the time.

The construction near is the pipe in the Junes where the tee boxes are situated was, the challenging. In the entire site, up to 10 million marron plants have been springed in to stabilize the Junes back to their original feature so that they don't continue to erode.

Every single hole has been planted by Hawtree.

HAWTREE: This is the 10th tee.


HAWTREE: All five.

O'DONOGHUE: And it looks miles away.

HAWTREE: This is the wrong way.

O'DONOGHUE: This looks like it's a very long hole. So this is a part, five obviously. And the green is topped away up there in the Junes.


O'DONOGHUE: It's going to be a great championship hole, isn't it?

HAWTREE: I think so. This is the championship tee we're standing on. All of the holes have gotten at least six tees.


HAWTREE: Some of them, even got seven. So are you going to go the hard route?

O'DONOGHUE: I'm thinking I might try any route for sir Hawtrees(ph).

HAWTREE: It's the most rewarding group when you get back.

O'DONOGHUE: Well, it's all of hill Martin but we're finally here. At the 10th, and what a magnificent green. And I can see exactly what you're saying now about this natural AMP theater.

HAWTREE: It was just made for this.

O'DONOGHUE: Have you, often times in your career being presented with such a spectacular piece of land to create something special on?

HAWTREE: Nothing special now. I worked on some terrific green sites before, but nothing like this. And I've enough to see when I come back to the world.


O'DONOGHUE: Welcome back to LIVING GOLF in Scotland. Now on a Links course such as this, a loose drive usually means a lost war. And wherever we're playing, we'd love to have a shot that we know we can put on the fair way every time.

Well former world number one and PGA champion, Martin Kaymer does and he very kindly invited us to his home course in Arizona, to show us how to play it.

O'DONOGHUE: So Martin, it's time to get the big dog a hit.

MARTIN KAYMER, PGA CHAMPION, 2010: What driver is a, in honesty is a very important stuff to put the ball into play first. And to be consistent with the drivers to hit the fairways in all this too good sports.

My favorite pet is still the little cat.

O'DONOGHUE: OK, let's find out more about why you consistently hit this ball well.

KAYMER: OK. If I want to fade the ball for example, I tee the ball up a little bit lower. I hit more down on the ball. So I cut a little more outside. And if I knew to draw the ball, I tee that up a little bit higher because it feels for me that I have to be -- I swing, I have to swing a little bit more shallow.

O'DONOGHUE: OK, let's see you hit the ball.

KAYMER: OK. That's a perfect little fade. It's a very consistent shot and maybe another thing, when I want to, cut the ball, I address the ball a little bit more on the heel. And when I draw the ball, I address it a little bit more on the toe.

You know, my swing doesn't change. If I hit the mid on, if it's seven, nine or drive, the thing is, its swing shouldn't change. Even with the driver, I pay even more attention(ph) if it's more sturdy, more stable.

And keep my back swing a little bit shorter. Keep lower half still, shot my back swing but not short in your shoulder.

O'DONOGHUE: Correct.

KAYMER: That should always be the same. And then really commit to the golf shot.

Yes to finish, you follow through, commit to the golf shot and then just see what happens.

O'DONOGHUE: Exactly the same as the previous ball, it's amazing. I actually would love to be able to hit and control. They hit often it seems so I am actually going to tee it a little bit lower. And I'm going to address it off the hill ever so slightly. Well, that's a slight fades.

KAYMER: Then you have to come with me every time I play golf.

O'DONOGHUE: Well I travel a lot so it will tough now. Truly tough one.


O'DONOGHUE: OK, we can actually see down the line now as Martin shots. So we want to check on that consistency, we want to see the shape of the shot that he hits, which is traditionally in fades.

How he sets off to us, and we're going to give him five shots to hit in a roll, and we're going to check the numbers on track path. All right, best of luck Martin.

OK, Justin, what are the numbers?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yeah, so we're looking at spin axis number, and we're looking for a positive number so that positive three just means, it's just a touch of a fade.

And Carry, distance was 277.

O'DONOGHUE: Beautiful looking drive again. And here are the numbers.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A little bit more of a fade, spin axis was positive nine, Carry 270.

O'DONOGHUE: So that was a much more pronounced fade.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: All right, six, seven and half. 276 Carry.

O'DONOGHUE: He's very consistent on the Carry. Wow, now that looks like a perfect drive for me.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Well, it's about the same. Spin axis nine, Carry 270.

O'DONOGHUE: Very consistent. Here's your final ball.

Pretty straight.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Amazed, that's straight. Negative .9, so zero would be a very straight shot.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: And Carry on that was 265.

O'DONOGHUE: That must be a very satisfying experience. We all view that consistency.

KAYMER: It's just nice that you have accept the view, so you know, you can hit it anytime.

O'DONOGHUE: Martin Kaymer, and accuracy of the tee is going to be critical for anyone hoping to win this year's open championship, now just two months away.

It is Royal Lytham and Saint Annes, a course famous for its 206 bunkers, and its roll call of distinguished open champions.

O'DONOGHUE (voice-over): The tone was set in 1926, the very first open held at Lytham. Bobby Jones who four years later would go on to claim the only grand slam in the history of golf, had yet to win an open championship.

As he teed off the 17th on the final day, he was tied for the lead. The shot he hit next would help to find his career and the legend.

DR. STEVEN REID, AUTHOR, BOBBY'S OPEN: For the point we're coming to now is where Bobby Jones actually wrote his name in the history of golf. It was where he won his first open championship and for a few minutes, it looked as though this wasn't going to happen.

He struggled all the way through the last couple of days, and he came to this hole, all square without Walters. Jones had pulled his shot into dreadful ways to sand trap -- effect to the play, he just would not want to be.

Between here and the range, and beyond the range, it was bunker after bunker after bunker. And if he failed in the slightest respect, his whole trip was finished. It was basically an all or nothing shot.

But he had the nerve and the guts to take on the shot, and play the shot which it finds him as a champion. He came and quickly settled over the ball and with his bashy, nowadays a four-on.

Picked it clean off the sand, and to everyone's amazement up here the green, the ball suddenly landed on the green, a 170 yards away. And Walters was rattled, and Jones was triumphant.

PETER DAWSON, CHIEF EXECUTIVE, THE R&A: Over the years, since we first were here in 1926, we've had a succession of really good champions here. They've been on top of the sport. They were not over powerless of course, you got to do it with accuracy and finish them.

If you look back at those players, that's how they won.

RAMON SOTA, FORMER PROFESSIONAL, UNCLE OF SEVE BALLESTEROS: When he won the first British shot in Lytham, in 1920, times in the bunker, only one miss -- what they call up and down. He told me that, the bunker shot, I beat all the players with a bunker shot.

O'DONOGHUE: And of course Lytham seen its first share of iconic shots since Bobby Jones stroke of genius.

DAWSON: I think the three that stand out for me was two by Seve. One when he first won from the car pack, on the right of the 60. When he made his debut from there. And then later when he won for the second time in '88, that fantastic chip shot, here at the 18.

REID: And he played left off the green, he didn't even go for the green because the flag was tied against the right hand side and just played to here. And everyone seen on film, they exquisite shot he played to finally squeeze out Nic prize, when his ball meandered across the green to find the hole, left the hole and stayed just a few inches beyond.

DAWSON: And then for me, back in '69 when Tony Jacklin won. And Jacklin's drive of the 18, a British commentator Henry Long said what a cocker.

In 2001, when they Open was last year, the breakthrough in technology in golf equipment hadn't really happened, it has happened since.

We've taken steps to make the course, to require more precision than before. But it still roll with it.

PAUL SMITH, HEAD GREENKEEPER, ROYAL LYTHAM AND ST. ANNES: Greg, is it a little big hole or something. Just for us --

SMITH: Yeah, there's been some quite extensive changes made at Royal Lytham and St. Annes since 2001. And they mainly compressed the tee positions. New bunkers, drive length, swails in front of the several of the greens.

But probably, the most radical one is been the repositioning the seventh. The green was originally positioned here probably, this was during probably the front sense of the green where this approach bunker is situated now.

This is one of the original Junes that was incorporated with the new design element. We still kept that sort of AMP theater feel of the original hole but we thought we'd probably improve upon it.

So overall it's going to proof quite a formidable challenge.

Well I suppose he has to test, probably post the open. But as we all know, Lytham was a formidable test before the change in it, and that's been strengthened.

O'DONOGHUE (on camera): Well, that's it for this edition of LIVING GOLF. Don't forget all our reports are online and you can keep across what we're up to on twitter. But for now, from the Junes of the Trump course on the north east coast of Scotland. It's goodbye.