April 30, 2014 / 8:29 PM / 5 years ago

Trump buys Turnberry golf course

U.S. property magnate Donald Trump practices his swing at the 13th tee of his new Trump International Golf Links course on the Menie Estate near Aberdeen, north east Scotland June 20, 2011. REUTERS/David Moir

LONDON (Reuters) - Turnberry, the iconic Scottish golf course which hosted one of the sport’s greatest duels, has been sold to American billionaire Donald Trump.

The real estate magnate announced on Tuesday that he had bought the famous links course for an undisclosed sum from the Dubai-based Leisurecorp.

“It was an opportunity, as far as I was concerned,” Trump told golf.com.

“Turnberry is considered one of the greatest courses in the world. It’s a special place. It’s an important place.”

Trump said he had no plans to change the course layout, which sits on a former World War One airfield and overlooks the Irish Sea, but he does want to develop the Turnberry hotel.

Trump owns a handful of golf courses in the United States but has never had one that has hosted a major championship but that could change with his purchase of Turnberry.

The course has hosted the British Open four times, most recently in 2009, and is likely to be considered for future majors.

“Turnberry is a great favorite among the players and it’s on the Open rota for sure,” R&A chief executive Peter Dawson told the BBC.

The British Open was first staged at Turnberry in 1977 when Tom Watson beat fellow American Jack Nicklaus by a stroke in a famous final round which became known as the “duel in the sun.”

Reporting by Julian Linden in New York, editing by Ed Osmond

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