My impression of Bernard Gallacher OBE as a Ryder Cup captain was one of quiet authority.

A pillar of calm when all around him was going bonkers, particularly during some of the more volatile clashes of the 1990s.

"There was always needle in the Ryder Cup back then. I was just delighted to win one at the third time of trying," said the 68 year old.

The softly-spoken Scot brushed off the dismal Cornish weather when opening the new Famous Nine course near Portreath yesterday.

"I'm from Scotland, we're used to it," said Gallacher, who is a Surrey resident and a member of Wentworth, where he was the professional for 27 years until the mid-1990s.

In 1969, at the age of 20, Gallacher became the youngest man to represent Great Britain in the Ryder Cup up to that time. He played in eight consecutive cups until 1983, before later captaining the team three times in the 1990s, the last of which he won at Oak Hill.

"Winning it as captain was obviously very nice, but playing in my first Ryder Cup in 1969 was the high point."

He also beat probably the greatest golfer of all time, Jack Nicklaus, in the 1977 Ryder Cup at Royal Lytham St Annes, which unfortunately ended in defeat for Great Britain & Ireland.

"I think the Americans have really focused on the Ryder Cup in the last few years. The Europeans won six out of seven (between 2002 and 2014) but we probably shouldn't have won all of those. The Americans are too good to lose that many, but they've got their bit between the teeth again now."

Gallacher, whose daughter Kirsty is a Sky Sports presenter, is impressed with The Famous Nine course near Portreath, based on iconic holes around the world.

"I'm not aware of another entire course devoted to famous holes. What they have done with that piece of land is very impressive. The Postage Stamp hole in particular has captured the green and bunker very well.

"There are a number of professionals who have their own artificial green to practise for the tour, so they are very good to putt on."

Gallacher, who clinically died several years ago after suffering three cardiac arrests, only plays golf for fun these days.

He cites former Ryder Cup team mates Tommy Horton and Brian Barnes as his lifelong golf friends, whilst his teaching guru was the legendary John Jacobs, who passed away earlier this year.

"Golf is different these days. The rewards are huge and the courses are in far greater condition, because the knowledge and understanding of greenkeepers, as well as the equipment they use, is so much better."

Gallacher has played Trevose and St Mellion on previous visits to Cornwall, but admits he'd "never been this far west" before being invited to open the new course at Gwel An Mor.