Special Olympics Great Britain has unveiled a new partnership with Topgolf, which will see the golfing entertainment destination become a recognised sport as part of Special Olympics. 

Topgolf, which operates state of the art driving ranges and restaurant complexes in Glasgow, Watford, Surrey, and Chigwell, will become the first ever branded Special Olympics sporting event, following a partnership signed earlier in the year.

To mark the new partnership, 20 Special Olympics Great Britain athletes are participating in a free eight-week pilot programme* at Topgolf’s venues, which will conclude with competition and celebration events in the week commencing 13 November. Topgolf’s PGA accredited coaching team will support Special Olympics Great Britain athletes and coaches with customised training, whilst keeping it fun for everyone.

Colin Dyer, Chief Executive of Special Olympics Great Britain, said: “This partnership with Topgolf creates a new experience for Special Olympics athletes. Topgolf is providing a great way for people of all ages with intellectual disabilities to experience the game of golf.

“We’re looking forward to following the progress of our initial 20 athletes over the coming weeks and are eager for many more members of Special Olympics Great Britain to benefit from the partnership in the future.”

Topgolf venues offer futuristic, target-themed golfing games, which use microchipped golf balls that are tracked and scored via computers in each driving range bay. The company aims to raise £25,000 each year to support Special Olympics Great Britain in its quest to use sport to help transform the lives of people with intellectual disabilities. It is also giving Special Olympics Great Britain prominence on the digital screens at each venue and it plans to start a volunteering programme where Topgolf coaches and playmakers can work more closely with athletes at Special Olympics Great Britain accredited clubs and competitions.

Michael Angelides, Director of Marketing at Topgolf, said: “We're so excited about partnering with Special Olympics. Topgolf is committed to making golf more inclusive and a whole lot of fun for everyone. We're thrilled to welcome athletes and coaches to our venues as part of the pilot training sessions, and our hope is that this will ignite a passion for the game, build friendships, and inspire others to get involved.”

Across England, Scotland and Wales, Special Olympics GB provides currently provides sporting opportunities for more than 6,500 athletes at its 95 accredited clubs, which are managed and supported by a team of 3,800 dedicated volunteers.

*Athletes still have the opportunity to participate in the free programme at Topgolf venues. Click here to register.