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Searching in St. Andrews

Searching in St. Andrews ›

By Sean Zak

When Sean Zak arrived in St. Andrews, Scotland—the mecca of golf—he was determined to spend his summer in search of the game's true essence.

He found it everywhere—in the dirt, firm and proper, a sandy soil that you don't see in America. He found it in the people who inherited the game from their grandparents, who inherited it from their grandparents. He found it in the structures that prop up the game—cheap memberships and “private courses” that aren’t private at all.

At every turn he also found LIV Golf, the Saudi-backed entity which descended on the professional circuit during that summer of the 150th Open Championship. Zak's personal personal pilgrimage now offered him a front-row seat at a cultural reckoning, one which pitted the game's longstanding customs against a divisive new force.

Searching in St. Andrews is the vivid chronicle of an unforgettable sojourn in the birthplace of golf, informed by sublime mornings on the Old Course playing with just four clubs, evenings spent analyzing legal documents riddled with greed, and the singular characters he encountered along the way.

Readers will meet a 92-year-old who just learned how to putt, explore the many differences between Golf Over There and Golf Over Here, and even experience caddying on the PGA Tour, from deciphering the yardage books to keeping your player on time to drinking until sunrise after you’ve missed the cut.

Written with heartfelt curiosity and charm, this is an essential portrait of golf amid the crosswinds of tradition, progress, and power.

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