A golfing great

He’s one of the stars of this year’s Australian Open, so we asked Geoff Ogilvy about the competition and golfing in Victoria.

Geoff Ogilvy, Royal Queensland Golf Club, Brisbane . Photo by Scott Davis / PGA of AUSTRALIA
Geoff Ogilvy, Royal Queensland Golf Club, Brisbane. Photo by Scott Davis / PGA of AUSTRALIA

The ISPS Handa Australian Open (1–4 December) is back, but with a few changes. For the first time, the Men’s, Women’s and a new All Abilities tournament will be played at the same time, in the heart of Victoria's 'sandbelt' at Victoria Golf Club and Kingston Heath Golf Club.

This is where Aussie golfing great Geoff Ogilvy grew up. He learned to play at Cheltenham Golf Club and later joined Victoria Golf Club before becoming one of our best-ever professional players. 

After spending 20 years in the US, he’s back on the sandbelt working with a golf architecture company, running his own tournament, and playing on the tour, including at the Australian Open, a competition close to his heart. 


“Offering young players an easy opportunity to come watch some of the best men and women golfers of all abilities will help inspire future generations,” says Geoff. “You can come watch major winners Minjee Lee and Hannah Green playing the same venues during the same week as major winners Cam Smith, Adam Scott and myself.”

Want to get into the swing? Here are Geoff’s tips for some of the best places to golf around Victoria

We have 10 excellent, challenging, unique courses that should be on every true golfer’s bucket list, grouped within 15–20 minutes of each other. There are 10 more in a further 45-minute radius. It’s truly unbelievable!

Mornington Peninsula
There’s Cape Schanck, the National, St Andrews Beach, Rosebud Country Club and many more courses all within minutes of great surf beaches, kid-friendly beaches, wineries and many gourmet delights.

Bellarine Peninsula
You’re close to Bells Beach, surrounded by wineries and on the way to the famous Great Ocean Road, plus you can golf at 13th Beach, Lonsdale Links, Barwon Heads, Curlewis and many others.



National Golf Course, Mornington Peninsula, Victoria, Australia

National Golf Course, Cape Schanck, Mornington Peninsula

And four reasons why Victoria's sandbelt is such a special place.

1. Architecture
It almost goes without saying that the sandbelt is known globally for incredible architecture. Every golf course architecture student is required to study the sandbelt.

2. Course conditioning
Melbourne’s hard bouncy fairways and greens are so different to most places in the world that it challenges parts of your game that others don’t. You need to be creative to play many of the shots required around the sandbelt.

3. Bunkering
The close-cut bunkers with sharp edges falling off the greens is a sandbelt trademark and if you haven’t experienced it, you must.

4. Proximity to Melbourne
So many great golf courses so close to the best city in the world. Melbourne’s food, wine, arts, fashion and sports offerings are as good as anywhere I’ve been and when you add the sandbelt 20 minutes away from the Melbourne's central business district, why wouldn’t you visit?