Golf Štiřín

The history of golf in Štiřín and its vicinity dates back to the 1920s. It is very closely connected with the establishment of top Czechoslovak golf bodies and especially with the name of Baron František Ringhoffer. At that time the Ringhoffers were the owners of Chateau Štiřín and its 240-hectare deer park. Their property also included a small golf course in the nearby village of Volešovice (today Olešovice). Baron Ringhoffer was a golf enthusiast, actively supporting the sport’s expansion. Being a bit eccentric sometimes, he even sent his head coachman, Doležal, to learn how to play golf and how to take care of golf courses to the cradle of modern golf, England. The enthusiasm and zeal of Štiřín’s master was greatly appreciated at the first meeting of the Golf Association of the Czechoslovak Republic that took place in the premises of the Czechoslovak Autoclub on 24 November 1931. Here, Baron František Ringhoffer was elected as the first deputy chairman of the national golf association. The first regular golf tournament – later played as a nation-wide team competition – was even titled the “Ringhoffer Cup” in 1940. The tradition of golf in Štiřín was violently interrupted for a long time by the events of WWII and especially by post-war nationalisation. In the 1980s a group of courageous enthusiasts tried to renew the old glory. Because the original golf course had given way to municipal housing long before, the group – at first associated in local TJ Slavoj Velké Popovice and later founding their own Golf Club Štiřín – started building a new one directly in the chateau park. Although sometimes their activities had an almost illegal character, they succeeded in the end. The history of local golf finally rose again. After the events of 1999, the golf in Štiřín started to stagnate. A new impulse came in 2003 when the course was taken over by a new club named after the Ringhoffers (Ringhoffer Golf Club) by the kind permission of their last living descendant, Baron Emanuel Ringhoffer. Today, the golf tournament the Ringhoffer Open, a dignified successor of pre-war competitions, is undoubtedly one of the most important local events.