Edited March 2010
PRESS RELEASE Golf Clubmakers Association Names Richard Kempton European Clubmaker of the Year Richard Kempton, founder and owner of Simply Golf in Hadlow, near Tonbridge in Kent, has been named as the winner of the prestigious ‘European Clubmaker of the Year’ award by the US-based Golf Clubmakers Association. Richard travelled to Austin, Texas for the October Award presentation and participated in the 2001 GCA conference at the headquarters of Golfsmith International Inc.. Founded in 1980, the GCA is the largest organisation in the world devoted to promoting the craft of golf clubmaking, with membership currently at 12,000 internationally. A panel of Golfsmith officials and other clubmaking experts chose the Award winners from several hundred nominations received from North American and other regional GCA Associations worldwide. The presentation was made by Tom Wishon, one of the golf industry's most highly respected club designers and R&D specialists and Golfsmith's Chief Technical Officer. In making the presentation, Wishon commented: "The GCA Regional Clubmaker of the Year Awards acknowledge the best clubmakers in the business and are one of the industry's highest honours. This award recognises Richard Kempton's ability, integrity and professionalism". On his return from the international Conference, Richard said: "I'm greatly honoured to have been chosen for this GCA Award from the ranks of European clubmakers”. “I have built my clubmaking business on the basis of complete customer satisfaction and I have worked very hard to stay abreast of the latest developments in both equipment technology and clubmaking techniques. To have this recognised by such a group of experts in the custom clubmaking industry is absolutely fantastic". This was Richard's second clubmaking award in three years. At the first European GCA conference in 1998, he was presented with a Special Award in recognition of his dedication to raising standards in clubmaking. For further details of the Golf Clubmakers Association, or Golfsmith Europe LLC, please contact Jenny McGuinness, Tel +44 (0)1480 308800 or Fax +44 (0)1480 308801.
To whom it may concern... I have been engaged in golf equipment and clubfitting research and development since 1974 and a designer of golf equipment since 1986. During my career I have taught more than 250 golf clubmaking and clubfitting schools and seminars at which there have been more than a total of 3000 custom clubmakers in attendance. In addition, over the course of my 30 years in the custom clubmaking industry I have corresponded with countless custom clubmakers, offering answers and advice to literally tens of thousands of questions related to the specific areas of golf club performance and fitting. Of all the custom clubmakers I have had the opportunity to meet, teach, mentor and advise, very few have impressed me with their combination of knowledge and passion for clubmaking and professional custom clubfitting as much as Richard Kempton, whose clubfitting business is based in Hadlow, Kent. I first encountered him in 1994, when he began to correspond with me in search of answers to his questions about the performance of golf clubs. Over the years, I have had the pleasure of meeting and discussing golf equipment technology with Richard in person, as well as our ongoing correspondence. The depth of his knowledge of golf equipment and clubfitting is so great today that he stands as the only person to have caught me out when I have made a mistake in stating something about the performance aspects of golf clubs! Quite simply, I cannot imagine that a golfer could possibly do better than to work with Richard to be custom fit for their golf clubs. The care, the detail and the refusal to finish until the absolute best combination of fitting specifications are found for each and every golfer is just one of the many things that makes him stand out in the field of custom clubfitting and clubmaking.
Press Release The Inaugural
Golf Clubmakers’ Association European Conference “A tremendous success” was the consensus of opinion when the curtain went down after the first G.C.A. European Conference, held at the Wyboston Lakes Conference Centre on 2nd & 3rd November, 1998. Clubmakers attended 14 seminars by Golfsmith’s technical staff and other leading industry experts, including representatives from some of the major golf companies such as True Temper, Apollo, Aldila, Golf Pride and United Sports Technologies. Alistair Cochran was also able to attend and pass on his thoughts on the likely effect on the modern game of changes to the rules relating to balls and clubs. The highlight of the conference was the presentation dinner, at which KEVIN REDFERN of Golf Stix in Rickmansworth was awarded the ultimate accolade in Professional Clubmaking, the Golfsmith Europe Clubmaker of the Year Award. Runner up was EDWARD MEANEY of The Fat Man in Dublin. Special Awards were presented to three other professional clubmakers: RICHARD KEMPTON, of Simply Golf in Hadlow, near Tonbridge, for his invaluable insights and feedback in relating technical specifications to practical clubfitting. JAMES MEARNS, of Grampian Golf in Chichester, for making the clubs that enabled the youngest-ever golfer to achieve a hole-in-one, as recorded in the Guinness Book of Records. ERIC HOLT, of Holt Refurbishing & Custom Clubfitting in Ilford, Essex, for his achievements in clubfitting productivity. Delegates from 10 countries made this event the largest of its kind in Europe and offered custom clubmakers the opportunity to update their technical knowledge and expertise. A Clubmakers' Open Forum, examining a variety of issues with a panel of eight of the most knowledgeable brains in the business, brought the event to an end. The GCA was founded in 1980 and is the largest clubmaking organisation in the world, with members in 30 different countries. For further information about the GCA or Golfsmith, please contact Jenny McGuinness on 01480-891909.
This is an e-mail from Liam S. to Tom Wishon at Tom Wishon Golf Technology, for whom we made a driver in 2006. Because he lives in Eire, Liam was unable to visit the UK, so the club specifications had to be determined by an extensive exchange of e-mails & telephone calls over a period of about 3-4 weeks. Despite not actually having met Liam or actually seen him swing, it is evident from his comments that we succeeded in making him a driver that provided both greater distance and accuracy than his previous club â€Ś
From: Liam SSStaunton [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: 09 March 2006 10:09 To: email@example.com Cc: 'Richard Kempton' Subject: New Club
Mr Wishon Richard Kempton recently made a driver for me. If all the clubmakers associated with Wishon Golf are up to Richard’s standard then all other clubmakers will be out of business very soon. I work as a coach with the world’s major corporation leaders and with golfers on the European Tour and our satellite tours so I have been around golf, golfers and clubmakers for over thirty years. I have never received the quality of service from anyone that I have received from Richard. He educated me in golf club design and technology. He went to great lengths to figure out my needs and eventually he knew more about me than I did myself. You know how you do grades of club fitting service in your book? You should put in an even higher level of service headed The Richard Kempton Service. I have just begun to play with the driver and Richard is still full of questions “Do you like it?” “How is it performing?” “What’s it like under pressure?” The club itself has increased my launch angle, added distance and removed my pull hook “disaster shot” - so far. Wishon Technology is something special. I’m sure several of my pro. clients will be anxious to try this one and I’ll let you know how they react. We spend lots of time “messing about” with clubs on the practice ground even in this miserable Irish weather. Regards Liam Staunton
Rob S, a 12 handicapper living in Guernsey, was customfitted for a set of major brand irons in 2009. When the clubs were delivered there were a number of problems with them, ranging from misaligned grips to incorrect lie settings. We also converted them from a swingweight match to a Moment of Inertia match, which improved his ball striking and accuracy through the set, particularly with his more lofted irons & wedges ...
From: P Kerman [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: 01 March 2010 10:52 To: 'Richard Kempton' Subject: Many thanks for the clubs â€Ś. Richard, We want to thank you for the Wishon clubs you made for us recently. Sylvia is delighted with her driver, fairway wood and hybrid. Their performance, feel and looks lifted her game right from the start and has restored her self-confidence. Likewise the woods, hybrid, irons and wedges you made for me are so satisfying to play with. They just feel right â€“ not something I have experienced with other clubs! We are receiving a number of queries from our golfing friends regarding our new clubs and fully expect more business to be coming your way. Our only regret is that we did not come to you sooner. Sincere thanks from two very satisfied and grateful customers. Paul and Sylvia Kerman Canterbury Golf Club handicaps 12 and 22
From: Peter Woolley [mailto:email@example.com] Sent: 25 February 2010 16:35 To: 'Richard Kempton' Subject: RE: Website testimonial
Dear Richard I’ll be very happy to do write something for your website. In fact, I was only singing your praises to my opponent this morning while playing and he is thinking of driving to see you . How about this: “I first went to see Richard Kempton at ‘Simply Golf’ about 8 years ago. Initially Richard made me a custom-fitted Wishon driver which transformed my accuracy and distance. I have since tried many of the other ‘latest’ big brand-name drivers and I have yet to find one better. Later he made me a full set of irons and fairway woods; the same applies – they are great. Just as important though, Richard was ultimately patient and thorough, occasionally spending time to let me test out 3 or 4 shafts on the driving range or adjusting the weighting to get them just right. Finally his prices are very reasonable. I now live in the West but still travel to Kent to see him when I need a new club. I cannot recommend him too highly. Peter - handicap 14” Best regards Peter Woolley
From: Steve FFox [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] Sent: 25 February 2010 15:58 To: email@example.com Subject: My wifeâ€™s golf clubs Just thought you might like to know that, in addition to making me the best set of irons I've ever owned (which got me down to a handicap of 2.5), you have now put the wife in the winner's circle, as well! She's the first woman to win the President's Cup at our club (Chart Hills). She only started playing golf a year or so ago, but her handicap has come down from 28 last year to 22 this year. That's an impressive spread of expertise! Thanks again. Steve
From: Reilly, Stuart [mailto:Stuart_Reilly@apl.com] Sent: 25 February 2008 12:27 To: ‘Richard Kempton’ Subject: Thanks for the clubs!! Hi Richard, Some feedback on the clubs you built for me ..… I just love the Wishon irons; when I hit them properly, they just feel great! Being able to try out and test various shafts & set-ups was really helpful and as a result, the ball flight I get with these clubs is exactly what I wanted. The mid & short irons have a more penetrating flight than my previous clubs, which really helps with control and consistency - and knowing that they are all set up perfectly for me is a great confidence-booster. The Wishon hybrid #2 iron that you made with the heavier graphite shaft is a guaranteed 240-yard fairway finder - perfect on tight driving holes or if the woods are misfiring .. I will never buy a golf club off of the shelf again. Pity it took me 10 years & many sets of clubs to learn that :-( !! Cheers.. Stuart Reilly.
Published on Mar 22, 2010