Ayrshire gave the world one of its biggest sports - open golf. Golf has been played at Irvine and Ayr since the 17th century but on 17th October 1860 eighteen competitors played at Old Prestwick for a Challenge Belt in a competition open to all the world. Prestwick is too small to host the Open today but Ayrshire still has two of the Open venues in Turnberry Ailsa and Royal Troon. The Ayrshire coast has been described as one long links, as can be seen between Irvine and Ayr. Ayrshire also has the only Golf Club in the world at Loudoun.
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