Solheim Cup captain Catriona Matthew with sportscotland head of performance nutrition Irene Riach

Recipe for success

A unique collaboration is fuelling Europe's Solheim Cup team

As Catriona Matthew leads Team Europe out against the USA in the 2019 Solheim Cup, nothing has been left to chance.

Behind the scenes, the performance nutrition team at the sportscotland institute of sport have been working with Gleneagles' executive chef, Simon Attridge, to ensure the players are fuelled for success.

Demanding schedule

This is the first time nutritional support and advice has been available for the team as a whole. With the format throwing up a more demanding schedule than normal tour events, the correct nutritional planning during preparation and in competition will be crucial to optimal performance. 

Players in contention for a place on Team Europe were asked to complete a survey to capture specific dietary requirements to ensure that every detail could be factored into the planning for the event.

A structured approach

Head of performance nutrition, Irene Riach, offered some insight into the benefits Catriona's team would get by taking this structured approach to their diet.

Irene said: "The demands of the Solheim Cup are very different, with the players expected to deliver over several days of competition. Managing sleep patterns, fuel, hydration and recovery will all have a critical part to play in ensuring that the players can perform consistently throughout the competition.

“We are absolutely delighted to have this opportunity to work with Simon and to add value to Team Europe’s preparations by sharing our innovation and expertise in performance sport.”


Catriona added: “I am grateful to sportscotland and Irene in particular for providing nutritional advice to Team Europe. The Solheim Cup is an intense week, where many of the players will be playing two rounds of golf in one day and so having the correct fuel for optimal performance is extremely important.

"It has also been a pleasure to work with Simon at Gleneagles to ensure that we are able to benefit from quality local ingredients, which we will incorporate into our diet.”

Scotland's larder

Scotland is renowned for its fresh produce and Irene and Simon are keen to ensure that the team will benefit from quality ingredients sourced from Scotland’s larder.

Simon added: “It’s a pleasure to work closely with Irene and Catriona to plan a delicious menu based on the fresh, seasonal ingredients available on our doorstep and the science of performance nutrition.

“Designing and delivering menus for any high-profile event at Gleneagles is always a privilege, but catering for some of the world’s best golfers – to ensure they play to their full potential during one of the biggest events in sport – is a tremendous honour for me and the whole kitchen team.” 

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