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Page last updated at 11:08 GMT, Monday, 15 September 2008 12:08 UK

Ryder Cup build-up photos

Europe captain Nick Faldo with the Ryder Cup at Heathrow Airport

Europe captain Nick Faldo prepares to fly out to America on Monday with the coveted Ryder Cup ahead of golf's team showdown on Friday

Europe captain Nick Faldo with the Ryder Cup at Heathrow Airport

Faldo hopes his side can retain the prize for the fourth time running - the United States last won in 1999

Padraig Harrington and Jose Maria Olazabal

Ireland's Padraig Harrington, twice a major winner in 2008, shares a joke with vice-captain Jose Maria Olazabal

The wives and girlfriends of the European team pictured at Heathrow Airport

The wives and girlfriends of the seven members of the Europe side flying out of Heathrow wish their partners good luck

Nick Faldo's shoes

Faldo goes for the footloose and fancy-free approach as he dons casual footwear for the flight

Europe's players pose before their flight to America

Seven members of Europe's side flew out on Monday - they will team up later with five players based in the United States

Nick Faldo and Paul Azinger

Faldo is greeted by United States skipper Paul Azinger at Louisville airport

Nick Faldo and Paul Azinger

The war of words begins as Faldo and Azinger hold their first media conference

Poster promoting the Ryder Cup

Azinger and Faldo get top billing on a poster as the Ryder Cup comes to Louisville

Strong winds have struck the Valhalla course

Strong winds of up to 60mph hit the course at Valhalla in Kentucky, Louisville, on Sunday and brought down several trees

Flags were knocked down and temporary facilities damaged

Temporary buildings were hit, flags brought down and a television tower damaged as the remnants of Hurricane Ike struck

Chairs in the tented village are strewn around by high winds

Chairs in the tented village at Valhalla were strewn as high winds caused disruption

The first hole at Valhalla

The opening tee took a battering ahead of the first full practice round, which will take place on Tuesday

Flags swirl on a temporary grandstand

Despite the high winds on Sunday, forecasters expect the weather to settle down for the three-day contest

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