He closed The Open Championship this year with one of the best rounds of the final day, but Branden Grace had to settle for a share of 20th at St Andrews for his best performance in that major championship.
He returns this week to the Old Course – as well as to Carnoustie and Kingsbarns – for the Alfred Dunhill LInks Championship which is celebrating its 15th anniversary. And he will be drawing on memories of his 2012 performance there, during which time his Carnoustie round of 60 helped to a then tournament-record equalling total of 22-under-par and a two-stroke edge over Thorbjørn Olesen.
Grace returns to action this week after impressing in America, and he is one place ahead of Shane Lowry in fifth in The Race to Dubai. The South African finished third in the US PGA Championship, having also shared fourth position in the US Open in June.
His Alfred Dunhill Links Championship came in the year he claimed four European Tour titles, and with two victories already this season, Grace will be looking to clinch a unique double, having won the Alfred Dunhill Championship in his home country at the start of the 2015 European Tour season in December.
For Ireland’s Lowry the tournament will be particularly special as it represents his first event back on European soil since claiming his maiden World Golf Championships title at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational, back in August.
Lowry, whose performance in Ohio earned him the Hilton European Tour Golfer of the Month award for August, has a strong record in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, having finished third in 2013 and sixth last year.
He starts the week in sixth position in The Race to Dubai and with a busy run of events coming up before the Final Series, he will be looking to make up ground on those ahead of him.
Scotland’s Paul Lawrie, winner of The Open Championship at Carnoustie in 1999 and winner of the first Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in 2001, is part of a strong line up of major champions, along with Stewart Cink, Darren Clarke, John Daly, Ernie Els, Padraig Harrington, Martin Kaymer, Graeme McDowell, Charl Schwartzel and Y.E.Yang.
With reporting from The European Tour