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"Do they have one?"
Crans-sur-Sierre. High in the Alps overlooking the Rhone Valley. Postcard land. A good course, leaping from Alp to Alp. Almost 7,000 yards, good condition, par 71. I don't really want to play in the American Express Pro-Am because I'm afraid I'll fall off.
Fred Corcoran, however, just happens to have a set of clubs, a preferential starting time, and a pairing with Barry Jaeckel and Jean-Claude Killy. I can play in my loafers. On the tee. The French Open champion, the ski racer and the idiot. Fred is looking for a photographer.
"It's at least 10,000 feet from here down to Geneva, Fred. I'm not swinging hard at any sidehill lies."
"I golf like you ski," says Jean-Claude.
We don't win.
The Swiss Open is guarded jealously by Crans-sur-Sierre, which has always held it. A couple of families named Barras and Bonvin, who seem to own all the hotels and raclette and fondue in the village, see that it runs perfectly.
A band is marching through town wearing leather skirts, another cocktail party has started, seven watchmakers in black suits are making speeches, everybody is getting a trophy for simply showing up—and the tournament hasn't begun yet.
In case the press doesn't know where the Matterhorn is, or where to find the best raclette, somebody named John Allatini is around to help. He is an expatriate Yorkshireman of private means who says he greatly enjoys "having sips and dins with the Elegantini."