Tiger Woods has had plenty of success at St. Andrews throughout his career.
Before he had the chance to tee off there again this week for the 150th playing of the British Open, however, he picked up yet another honor.
Woods was one of three golfers named an honorary member of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club at St. Andrews on Wednesday.
"I am grateful for this invitation to become an honorary member of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews," Woods said in a statement, via ESPN. "It is not only the home of golf but a place in this world that I hold near my heart. I am humbled to accept this invitation alongside these outstanding players today, as well as those who came before us."
While it’s purely symbolic, the honor is clearly well earned.
Woods has won the British Open three times throughout his career, twice at St. Andrews in 2000 and in 2005, and then again at Royal Liverpool in 2006.With his return to golf following the terrifying car accident he was in more than a year ago, and the tournament returning to St. Andrews, there’s no better time than to bring Woods into the R&A.
“My first chance to play in The Open Championship was here,” Woods said on Tuesday. “I'll never forget I played with Ernie Els and Peter Jacobsen the first two days … I had a great time as a young little kid, and they showed me the ropes of how to play this golf course and how many different options there were.
"It was eye opening how this golf course can play as easily as it can be played and also as difficult it can play just by the wind changing. Obviously when the tide changes as well. Just being here, I think this is my sixth Open Championship here, I think. Just to have that experience and have the ability to play here at the home of golf is always quite special. Then to have won it twice makes it that much more special.”
Woods was joined by Rory McIlroy and Paul Lawrie in receiving the honors on Wednesday. McIlroy, who is the betting favorite this week, won the British Open in 2014. Lawrie, 53, did so in 1999.
They were the latest to pick up major honors this week. Hall of Famer Jack Nicklaus was named an honorary citizen of St. Andrews, making him just the third American ever to do so.
"I warmly congratulate Tiger, Rory and Paul on becoming honorary members of The Royal and Ancient Golf Club," St. Andrews captain Peter Foster said in a statement, via ESPN. "They have each made huge contributions to golf and played their part in inspiring millions to take up and follow the sport around the world.
"They are not only great champions but fantastic ambassadors for golf and have brought so much joy to so many young fans in particular. This is entirely fitting recognition for three such distinguished sporting figures, and I have no doubt they will continue to give exemplary service to the sport through their new roles in the club."