Links golf could never reasonably be described as ageist.
Ernie Els won his second Open after making birdie at the 18th, one of four on the back nine, and then headed to the putting green behind the clubhouse where he said he prepared for a play-off at best.
Graeme McDowell has insisted his major-winning experience will be of little relevance in his quest to overhaul Adam Scott on the final day of the Open.
Open championships need not always bow to conventional ways. The 141st playing of golf's oldest major has witnessed a wavy-haired country and western fan from Nashville storm to the summit of the leaderboard.
Rory McIlroy may not quite yet be, as has been claimed in more excitable quarters, the new Tiger Woods – give it another five or 10 majors, then let's talk – but few would deny the young man is box office. On the first morning of this Open, the old Tiger Woods marched an animated army three deep up and down Lytham. On the second, Rory's roarers went one better; equally devoted, they stood four in line.
The first few hours of an Open championship are usually ones of genteel anticipation: a soundscape of rippling applause, light cheers and mild groans as the early groups swish, clack and tock their way out on to the course and into the nascent event.
The opening six holes of Rory McIlroy's 2012 Open bid were as uneventful as they come: par, par, par, par, par, par.
The sun shone brightly over Royal Lytham & St Annes on Wednesday afternoon.
Lee Westwood has taken 57 unsuccessful tilts at a major championship.
It seems ridiculous to envisage Rory McIlroy ever operating under the radar at a major championship.