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UK & Spain - Free - Issue 5. 2006

Nutritional Information: Digest news, reviews, fashion & interviews in the most stylish magazine designed to feed your golfing appetite


welcome... The Golf Trail Putting together a magazine involves many different processes. Plan, research, contact, travel, meet, write, design and eventually print and distribution. Whilst we may set out with a good idea of the direction we intend to take with each issue, it is often at the research and contact stage where most changes take place. Delving behind the scenes of the golf industry you begin to discover many intriguing links between individuals and companies, and suddenly it is not you controlling the destiny of the magazine but golf itself. Golf is not only connecting people who play the game. Our quest to uncover the work that goes into making a golf tournament led us to Volvo Event Management, organisers of the end of season showpiece on the European Tour - the Volvo Masters. Invaluable support from the venue and sponsors is an impressive demonstration of large corporations from various sectors working together to create a greater whole.

Paul McGinley and his dog Febe at Sunningdale Golf Club, Surrey © Getty Images. Issue 5. 2006 GOLF! is distributed in golf clubs, golf outlets and luxury hotels from Sotogrande to Málaga & Almería, Spain; & the most prestigious golf clubs and golf resort hotels in the South East of England.


The articles appearing in this publication represent the views of the authors and not necessarily those of the publisher. No responsibility is taken for unsolicited manuscripts, pictures or artworks. Any reproduction, either in part or in full, of written or photographic material contained in this magazine is prohibited unless permission is given by the publisher. Printed by Jiménez Godoy S.A. Ctra. de Alicante, Km.3. 30160 Murcia Tel.: (+34) 968 851 650. Fax: (+34) 968 852 477


Defending champion Paul McGinley is a proud Irishman, and we have mixed with his interview an abundance of incredible photographs which show the diverse selection of golf courses available in Ireland for those who have a piqued interest following the drama of The Ryder Cup. Amongst his favourite courses in Ireland is Adare Manor, designed by Robert Trent Jones, the same legendary architect responsible for Valderrama - the golf course on which the Volvo Masters is held. Director of Golf at Valderrama, Derek Brown, kindly lent us his signed copy of the fascinating book ‘Golf’s Magnificent Challenge’ by Robert Trent Jones. Now out of print, the extract from his thoughts on ‘what makes a golf course great?’ are just as relevant today as when he wrote them, and the sheer number of golf courses he designed surely justifies his expertise on the subject. Back down at club level, eat GOLF! was honoured to be invited to take part in a competition hosted by another respected golf course architect in the form of the ‘Dave Thomas Classic’. The Texas Scramble format saw some tough competition which put ‘the media team’ out of the prizes, but a respectable fifth place left room for improvement and a hopeful return next year. Technology continues to have an impact on our game, and Callaway Golf are bringing it to the masses with the CPAS system. Nick Faldo recently suggested that this type of technology is having as revolutionary an effect on the game as the development of golf balls. The last tournament of the year to be played in England on the 2006 Ladies European Tour is held at Chart Hills in Kent - a course designed by Faldo - and Bethan Cutler looks into the future prospects of the English lady golf professionals. We hope you enjoy this issue, and your comments are much appreciated. Email us at our usual address: 004

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The release of a new Hôtel Costes compilation is always a unique event, a special rendez-vous for those who like high quality music, and the next instalment in the series will see Volume 9 released on the 25th September. A true musical collection, the Hôtel Costes series is more than ever the ultimate reference in luxury and sophistication. After eight volumes, plus a best of released in late 2004, the series always gives an impeccable and intimate mix of exclusive tracks.

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...and all of our contributors, see page 8 for details...

contributors... DENNIS SHAW, PGAs OF EUROPE Currently Media consultant for the PGAs of Europe, having previously been UK sports writer for a number of national and provincial newspapers, including, for several years, Midland correspondent for The Times. A British Sports Journalist winner and also a Midlands Sports Writer of the Year. Author of two football books as a ghost-writer and formerly editor of Football Today. BETHAN CUTLER, LADIES EUROPEAN TOUR Media Manager for the Ladies European Tour. Principal news and features writer for the Tour’s official website and responsible for the overall production of the Tour’s annual media guide. Also contributes to numerous publications as a photo journalist. Media point of contact for access to all players and officials. ALLISON DYER, TOTAL SPORTS PSYCHOLOGY BSc MSc CPsychol, British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) Accredited Sport Psychologist and British Psychological Society (BPS) Chartered Psychologist. Allison works as the consultant sport psychologist to the PGA EuroPro Tour, the David Leadbetter Golf Academy (La Cala) and Positive Golf (Elviria) PATRICK BRADY, PGA PROFESSIONAL Patrick is a modern and forward thinking golf professional with an enthusiasm and passion for teaching the game as much as playing it. It is a pleasure to have Patrick on board for his thought provoking and visual ideas which assist us all in improving our own game. This issue Patrick focuses on the short pitch over water - a shot which many golfers fear. NICK LANE, PGA PROFESSIONAL Joining us this month to demonstrate the benefits of the Explanar training system, Nick has played on the Sunshine Tour and the EuroPro Tour as well as having caddied and coached on the US Tour. A talented all round professional golfer, he now runs and teaches at Positive Golf in Marbella, the official winter training ground for players on the EuroPro Tour. DAVID POULTON, KZG WORLD TOP 100 GOLF FITTER David was selected by KZG, the world’s leading manufacturer of custom pro-line golf equipment, as one of the World’s Top 100 Club Fitters. The top 100 represent those who are the most skilled, the most knowledgeable, and the most committed to the process of custom fitting golf equipment, marrying technical expertise with a distinctly personal touch. EVAN SCHILLER, GOLF PHOTOGRAPHER An officially licensed photographer for the Pebble Beach Company, Evan has also been invited to photograph hundreds of the finest golf courses around the world. Evan has competed in professional golf tournaments including the PGA Tour and the U.S. Open. These experiences provide a perspective and eye unique among golf photographers today.



The Professional Golf Association of Europe represents 35 member countries whose national PGAs collectively represent some 12,000 individual club professionals.

The Old Hall, Dorchester Way, Macclesfield, Cheshire SK10 2LQ. Tel: 01625 611444 Fax: 01625 610406 Allison Dyer Email: UK: 0771 8208942 Spain: 662070787 Patrick Brady Private tuition with Patrick Tel.: (+34) 607 82 70 21 Nick Lane

Positive Golf, Marbella Winter training ground for the PGA EurPro Tour. David Poulton

Tel.: (+34) 685 990 138

Evan Schiller For more information on framed prints, stock photography, licensing or to have your course photographed contact: (00-1) 203 222-8612 or Telephone: (00-1) 203 222-8612

FREE COMPETITION in association with About Peak Performance In 1986, while on a ski lift in Are, two of Sweden’s top downhill skiers - Stefan EngstrÜm and Peter Blom - talked about starting a new Swedish clothing company. The founders wanted to create functional and attractive garments for the lifestyle they themselves lived and loved. Initially focused on skiwear, as the brand won increasing popularity the range was expanded to include sports wear for outdoor activities, and has been producing golf clothing since 1992. As official clothing suppliers to the Volvo Masters, Peak Performance has an ever increasing presence on tour. Their involvement with golf continues to grow through its attractive Peak Performance Golf Team. Including stars such as Per-Ulrik Johansson, Peter Hedblom, Mikko Ilonen, Suzann Pettersen, Iben Tinning, Helen Alfredson, Catrin Nilsmark and Marlene Hedblom, they are certainly well represented.

WINNER WIN A PEAK PERFORMANCE JACKET Peak Performance are generously offering a luxurious Jacket to celebrate their involvement with the Volvo Masters to one lucky reader of eat GOLF! in our exclusive competition. HOW TO ENTER Tell us the location of the Volvo Event Management Headquarters - is it? (a) Brussels (b) Moscow (c) New York The answer can be found within the pages of this issue.

Log on to our website - - to post your answer. The winner will be chosen at random, and notified by email. We will print the winner in the next issue of eat GOLF! eat


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The lucky winner of a pair of Tour 360 shoes courtesy of adidas in our issue 4 competition was Cathy Shea She answered correctly that it is the 360 wrap which provides maximum stability in the adidas Tour 360 shoe.

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Interview with LEGENDARY GOLF COACH PETER COWEN. SEEING RED?.. Seek help with Sports Psychology Dennis shaw Meets Famed course designer DAVE THOMAS. PATRICK BRADY REVEALS THE SECRET OF DRIVING

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“I am fiercely patriotic and love Ireland. For as long as I can remember I have used my golf ball to celebrate my home country and I mark it with the colours of the national flag.�


Paul McGinley After enjoying two of the greatest thrills any golfer can experience in team golf, namely winning the World Cup for his home nation of Ireland and holing the winning putt in The Ryder Cup, McGinley did something for himself at the end of 2005 when he won the biggest title of his career - the Volvo Masters at Valderrama. eat

GOLF! caught up with Paul

to find out more about him.


“Playing golf for twelve months as opposed to three, I got down pretty quickly to a two handicap and it all started from there.”

How did you get into professional golf? I got in through the back door, basically. I was a Gaelic footballer in Ireland up until the age of 19, when I broke my knee playing football. I’d shattered my knee cap and was on crutches for six months. At that stage I was about an 8 handicap in golf. I used to play during the summer periods, only for 3 months. When I came off the crutches I started to play golf in the winter for the first time. Playing golf for twelve months as opposed to three, I got down pretty quickly to a two handicap and it all started from there. Who was it that sparked your initial interest in golf? My Dad. He was a good player. He played off a handicap of one for most of my growing up period.


He used to play in the amateur championships in Ireland and I used to caddy for him. So that’s where I learnt a lot about the game and also a lot about the way to conduct yourself on the golf course and things like that. Old Head Golf Links, Kinsale, Ireland Built on a 220 acre diamond of land, jutting out over two miles into the Atlantic Ocean. The promontory is almost an island with numerous caves running beneath your feet as you play the course. 40 acres of unspoilt cliff frame the course and rise to over 300 feet in places. Nine holes play along the cliff tops, and all eighteen holes provide stunning ocean views. With the ever changing sea breezes, the course provides a stern test to the touring pro and the high handicapper alike. For more info visit: www. Photograph by Evan Schiller.


Tralee Golf Club, Tralee, Ireland Opened in October 1984 Tralee Golf Course was the first European golf course designed by Arnold Palmer. When he first saw the area upon which his company was to build Tralee golf links, he was ecstatic about the possibilities. “I have never come across a piece of land so ideally suited for the building of a golf course” he said. “I designed the first nine but surely God designed the back nine”, Palmer explained. “I am happy that we have one of the worlds’ great golf links here.” For more information visit: Photograph by Evan Schiller. 028

Royal Portrush, Co. Antrim, Ireland When the club formed in May 1888, it was known as the Country Club. It became the Royal County Club in 1892, when H.R.H. The Duke of York was its patron. Finally the name was changed to “The Royal Portrush Golf Club” in 1895 with H.R.H. The Prince of Wales as patron. For more information visit: Photograph by Aidan Bradley.

You went to America to further your college and golfing education. What led to this decision? Initially I was doing a three year diploma in marketing in Dublin, which I finished. Then I worked in the EC for a year. At that stage I was playing golf twelve months a year and got down to a scratch handicap and I thought, well I’m getting good at this golf, I wonder if there is a career in it. At that stage I wasn’t good enough, but I thought I’d kill two birds with one stone and do two more years of education and go to America to try and get a golf scholarship.

Do you play a lot of golf in Ireland? Yes I do. I’ve played all of the great courses in Ireland, and feel very patriotic when I’m back there. I think we’ve some of the greatest golf courses in the world and I’m very proud of them. Do you have any favourites? Portrush is my favourite. Portrush, Baltray and Lahinch would probably be my three favourites in Ireland. In terms of new golf courses that have been built, probably Adere Manor where the Irish Open will be in 2007 is very much a favourite also.


Baltray, Dragheda, County Louth, Ireland County Louth Golf Club or “Baltray” as it is more affectionately known is situated 4 miles from the historic town of Drogheda at the mouth of the river Boyne. With the river to the South and the Irish Sea to the East, this is links golf at is very best, with only the muted murmur of a ships engine to break the sounds of nature, as it quietly wends its way up river to the port. Sometimes ferocious and other times benign, it provides competition for all handicaps. In today’s language it could well be described as “user friendly”. County Louth Golf Club were the proud hosts of a highly successful Nissan Irish Open in 2004. For more information visit: Photograph by Aidan Bradley.


Lahinch, County Clare, Ireland The origins of Lahinch Golf Club go back to the closing decade of the nineteenth century. In 1892 officers of the famous Black Watch Regiment stationed in Limerick came upon a vast wilderness of duneland two miles from the spectacular Cliffs of Moher. Being good Scotsmen, they knew at once that they had found the perfect terrain for a golf links. When this came to the attention of Alexander W. Shaw and Richard J. Plummer, prominent officials of the Limerick Golf Club, they at once went out and made enquiries. They were helped in the laying out of the course by officers of the Black Watch Regiment, and Lahinch Golf Club was duly founded on Good Friday, 15th April 1892. For more information visit: Photograph by Aidan Bradley.


“The World Cup was for Ireland, The Ryder Cup for Europe, but the Volvo Masters was a selfish win, I won it for Paul McGinley...”

You are now moving into the field of golf course design. What can you tell us about your new course? It’s under construction at the moment and should be open in April 2007. It is called Macreddin, and is in County Whitlow, about an hours drive South of Dublin. ( Do you see designing a course as a ‘one-off’? It is for the moment. It has been a lot more time consuming than I thought, and also a lot more difficult. But it has been a really great experience and I’ve really enjoyed it. I’ll maybe do more in


the future but I just want to see how this one turns out first. All the indications are that it will be great. Can designing a course be a distraction from playing professional tournament golf? No, it just eats up a lot of my time, but I wouldn’t call it a distraction. I’ve got three young kids and a wife and I want to spend time with them as well. I spend a lot of time training in the gym, and I want to have my social time and time with the family. So I don’t feel I have enough time in my life to do a whole lot at the moment, but I very much enjoy it and I will certainly do more in the future.

You are the defending champion of the Volvo Masters this year. What did it mean to you to win this tournament? It came off the back of losing the final of the World Matchplay three weeks earlier so it was very important for me to get that win and finish the season on a high. Valderrama is a course that I’d never played well on in the past but I managed to click everything into place last year. It’s one of our most prestigious events on the tour and one I am very proud to have won.

Is there a secret to conquering Valderrama? I think keeping your ball on the fairways and keeping your approach shots below the pin is the big secret. The greens are small, so your iron play has to be very accurate. What would you say has been your most rewarding tournament victory to date? I think the time I won the World Cup with Padraig Harrington in Ireland in 1997.

Druids Glen Golf Resort, Co. Wicklow, Ireland Often referred to as “The Augusta of Europe”. The flora and fauna of the Glen provide a colourful backdrop to a magnificent golf course. Design duo Pat Ruddy and Tom Craddock were given the brief to create the best inland course in Ireland, and features many signature holes which provide golfers with a thrilling golf experience amidst a beautifully manicured landscape. For more info visit: Photograph by Aidan Bradley.



“I think my strength is that I don’t have a weakness. There’s no one thing that stands out...”

What sort of support do your sponsors give to your game? I am very fortunate to have good sponsors. My sponsors have been with me for a long time and I get a lot of support from them. I help them out with corporate days during the year, and I’ve become friends with a lot of them as well. Of course sponsorship is very important at my level of golf. What are the strengths and weaknesses of your game? I think my strength is that I don’t have a weakness. There’s no one thing that stands out, but if I do feel I have a weakness it’s something that I’ll work hard on.

Is there a part of the game you work on more than another? I probably practice with my 6 iron more than most because if it’s somewhere between the driver and the pitching wedge. I spend at least fifty percent of my time working on my wedges and short game. Your putting is often commented on as a part of your game which holds you back. Are you aware of just how many times you appear to ‘burn’ the edges of the hole on the greens?! I think that my game is based on hitting a lot of fairways and greens in regulation, so it looks like I’m missing more than most guys.

Doonbeg Golf Club, Charleston, Ireland Designed by Greg Norman, when the Great White Shark first saw Doonbeg in 1997, he was visibly stunned. “If I spent the rest of my life building courses, I don’t think I’d find a comparable site anywhere. It’s spectacular, land made by God. I’m the happiest man in the world. This is a course I want to be identified with, one I’ll be able to say with pride, ‘I did that one’.” For more information visit: Photograph by Evan Schiller.


Ballybunion Golf Club, County Kerry, Ireland. Featuring two traditional links style courses, the Old Course and the Cashen Course, the character of both is unique. Both true links are set amongst the finest sand dunes the world has to offer. They hug the ruggedly breathtaking Atlantic Ocean coastline, which provides a magnificent backdrop. For more information visit: Photograph by Evan Schiller.

“Ro conse tat ulluptat. Met, sum faccum faccum nullaore nim il ullaor aliquipisi. Lestionum nonsed dunt inibh euisi.”

“I am very much a family man with three young kids and a great wife. I spend time with them as much as possible, and they are a lot of fun.”

My statistics are in pretty good shape and I do hole my fair share of putts so it’s not something I get too much involved in. Do you have a sports psychologist? Yeah, I come in and out of working with a guy. I have spells when I work with him and spells when I don’t. I think everybody in the professional game uses one, and of course it is an important part of modern golf. How important is the support from your family in the success of your golfing career? It’s very important. I am very much a family man with three young kids and a great wife. I spend time with them as much as possible, and they are a lot of fun. I very much enjoy my family as much as I do my family back 036

home in Ireland - my Mum and Dad and Brothers and Sisters. Does a passion for golf run through the family? The young kids haven’t started playing yet, they are just starting to get lessons now. And the family dog? She goes with me everywhere when I’m at home, even on the golf course. Is there any sporting rivalry between you and your Irish colleagues? No I don’t think so. The game is such a difficult game that if you take your eye off the ball your going to get eaten, so the important thing is to try and keep looking ahead and try to beat the golf course and never mind about anything else!

15th Hole, Ballybunion Golf Club, Ireland







For more information on framed prints, stock photography, licensing or to have your course photographed please visit Telephone: (00-1) 203 222-8612

the great unsung are ‘masters’ too By Dennis Shaw, PGAs of Europe My only visit to the Volvo Masters at Valderrama was in 2002 when, as a play-off loomed and light was failing fast, Colin Montgomerie and Bernhard Langer decided to tie, and share the award.


“Many of these ‘invisible’ happenings have seemed to me to be to be rather moving quite simply because they reflect the devotion to the sport...” Along with the memory of that unusual outcome, there lingers another not-very-original impression: this is that Jaime Ortiz Patiño’s creation is a masterpiece in terms of coursequality and general ambience. The opportunity to attend such events, along with Ryder Cups, Open Championships and PGA Championships at Wentworth, are cherished experiences that can go with the territory when providing a service for the PGAs of Europe. And yet... from a purely personal perspective, the stratospheric moments accumulated during some eight years as media consultant, have been that much more meaningful when liberally balanced by the involvement with events that make no headlines, only in our own publications. Many of these ‘invisible’ happenings have seemed to me to be to be rather moving quite simply because they reflect the devotion to the sport, and indeed their contribution to its longterm well-being, by players or officials who want little or nothing more than the knowledge that they have played their part. As a perfect example let’s reflect on the story of Reny Damianova, an intrepid lady, indeed. Some five years or so ago, this coach from the University of Sofia, decided that since golf was now on her prospectus, a dictionary of its rather strange language ought to be made available to students.

Just to get the gist of her thinking, how the devil do you translate ‘splash out of a bunker’ into Bulgarian and explain what it means? Or, for that matter ‘a hole in two under par is called an eagle’... Ms Damianova wanted some expert help and a dash of credibility in putting her glossary of golfing terms together, and an explanation of the rules, in Bulgarian, with an accurate English translation. She had heard that the PGAsE’s Golf Europe Trade Show was taking place in Munich so decided to ‘pop along’, and contacted the then general secretary, Lawrie Thornton, to ask for an hour of his time. The meeting duly took place and it was only as it concluded that he learned that she had travelled all the way by a series of ‘bus journeys, crossing several national borders over a period of two days... and was now off to catch the bus home. Incredible... While I’ve no idea how the publication has fared in the last five years (though I did write a Foreword for it on behalf of the PGAsE) it is a fact that much has been going on unnoticed in her country’s golfing affairs because last December, at the PGAsE Annual Congress in Marbella the PGA of Bulgaria became our 29th Full Member country. So much for Bulgaria. Now let’s take a little look at Turkey... For the last six years the PGAsE has endorsed a Beko-sponsored pro-am at the Kemer Golf and Country 039

“On an early visit we were intrigued by the crocodile of perfectly behaved, crisply school uniformed children who arrived in the afternoon.”

a local lad himself and David Clare, the English-born Director of Golf at Kemer has since encouraged him through the process of attending the PGA academy at the Belfry, the first young Turk to do so. Along the way he has helped to coach those youngsters from the village schools. He was probably one of them himself, originally, though I’m not sure about that.

Club, an upmarket multi-sports and social complex, some 25 miles outside of the centre of Istanbul.

But little did we know how carefully this polite and courteous young man, smilingly practising his English on us, was improving his own game.

On an early visit we were intrigued by the crocodile of perfectly behaved, crisply school uniformed children who arrived in the afternoon. On casually enquiring about them, we were told that, each year, this exclusive club for the well-heeled, invites two local village schools to offer a dozen places each, mostly muslim boys and girls, in equal numbers, to undergo an introduction to golf, with coaching by the professional staff, free of charge. Those boys and girls who remained on the scheme were subsequently offered free membership of the club and became its Junior Section. The inhabitants of these local villages are populated predominantly by farm labourers. Their dwellings have no running water. These people are seriously under-resourced by modern Western standards. But the kids, from what we observed, were models of good behaviour. And most of them remained on the scheme. One of the young trainee PGA professionals on the staff at that time was named Senol Bay. When the golf professionals from around Europe, and the PGAsE tournament staff arrived, at any old hour, often late at night, Senol was the first face to be seen as we emerged from the baggage hall of Atarturk Airport, Istanbul. He was there to meet, greet, and transport us to the hotel. Senol is 040

Last year Senol was the winner of the Beko International proam, beating a couple of dozen experienced pros from around Europe on the way including dual past-champion Simon Edwards in a sudden death play-off. How’s THAT for progress? Mention of David Clare brings us to another true story of guts, determination and dedication to golf beyond the norm. David is from Chesire. A Crewe Alexander supporter, and there are not too many of those. But the first thing you notice about him, and you can’t help it, is The Limp. Something is clearly very long with one of his legs. Strange, that, unique maybe, for a golf pro... Being a journalist, and naturally curious (OK, nosey) I asked him ‘how come?’ Polio as a child, I’d been told. No such thing, though. Some 25 years ago David, who had been an outstanding young hockey player before he turned to professional golf and earned his European Tour card. He was practising on the range in preparation for his first year, and asked his caddie to get him a hot coffee. It wasn’t just hot, though. Scalding, in fact. So when he accidentally spilled the entire contents over his leg, soaking his trousers, it intrigued him that he never felt a thing on his flesh beneath the thin covering.

I’ll not go too deeply into the details of ‘what happened next’. Examination by a doctor… on to a neuro-surgeon... pins stuck in his leg... never felt a thing... three growths at the base of his spine, all benign but one was deepseated. ‘Absolutely terrified...’ They had to be surgically removed, and during the delicate operation, his spinal chord was nicked, hence the limp. Would he walk again? Maybe. Would he play golf again? It seemed unlikely. But he did, six months later, and even won some events, though it ended his hopes on the European Tour. Fast forward a quarter of a century and David Clare has made a huge success as a pivotal figure in Turkish golf, he’s been running the Beko Classic for some eight or nine years, since its humble beginnings, he’s the country’s national coach, and he still plays in tournaments when spare time and opportunity arises. I daresay he would love to have embarked on that European Tour career, the one that beckoned so tantalisingly, and to have played in such events as the Volvo Masters. Instead he became one of those admirable people who work mostly, and often completely, out of the limelight to create the infra-structure off which the high-profile tours feed. Similar work is going on right now in countries such as Poland, Slovenia and elsewhere, not to mention many of the South American, African and Asian nations, that have benefited from The R&A/PGAsE World Golf Development Programme, funded by Open Championship surpluses or, in the future, by the Ryder Cup European Development Trust. In being privileged to observe their contribution I have developed the hope that, eventually, we will witness players from these countries making an impact on world golf. The efforts of the Great Unsung deserve no less.

“Chart Hills has surpassed even my expectations and I doubt that anyone would ever tire of playing this course.� Nick Faldo

Hailed as one of the finest recently built golf courses in England, Chart Hills is the British architectural debut of six times Major winner, Nick Faldo. Set on 200 acres of gently undulating hills, Chart Hills was officially opened for play in August 1993 and despite its relative youth in golfing terms, the course has already gained many accolades. In addition, Chart Hills has been chosen to host the European Tour qualifying school venue and again in 2006 plays host to the Ladies English Open.

Chart Hills Golf Club. Weeks Lane, Biddenden, Kent Reception: +44 (0) 1580 292 222. Pro Shop: +44 (0) 1580 292 148 -

Bethan Cutler of the Ladies European Tour takes a closer look at some of the English stars looking to make an impact on women’s golf over the coming years.


By Bethan Cutler, Ladies European Tour Photos ©Tristan Jones / LET

The third consecutive Ladies English Open takes place at Chart Hills this October and offers a rare opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the world’s leading golfers at one of the best clubs in the UK. Most of the headliners will jet in from across the globe to play Nick Faldo’s gem in the Kent country side but there are a few for whom the tournament will take place a little closer to home. England has produced some great names in women’s golf over the years and no article about women’s golf would be complete without mentioning the likes of Laura Davies, the best British golfer of all time and winner of 66 international titles.


Yet on the Ladies European Tour there are a number of rising English players making their mark on the global circuit. Rebecca Hudson from Doncaster is one such professional who broke her duck in sensational fashion by claiming her first victory this year in Hungary. Kirsty S Taylor from Hampshire won on the Pro Source Tour in Bristol earlier this year giving herself a huge confidence boost and her namesake, Kirsty A Taylor from Clitheroe was defending her Welsh title this summer at the one-year-old Machynys Peninsula Golf Club in Llanelli, South Wales.

Fame More

All in all, the English players are making a charge in 2006 and many companies and fans of the sport are increasingly recognising this.

“...the English players are making a charge in 2006 and many companies and fans of the sport are increasingly recognising this.” 044

One such organisation is the Leaderboard Group, which runs the Ladies English Open. This year, the forward-thinking company has decided to extend their tournament portfolio in the UK with another tournament to be added to the Ladies European Tour’s schedule from 2007. In early August, amid the excitement of the Weetabix Women’s British Open at Royal Lytham and St Annes Golf Club, the Ladies European Tour announced The Ladies European Masters, which will take place at The Oxfordshire in the Thames Valley next June. The event will be staged annually at The Oxfordshire for the next four years with minimum prize money of £300,000 – befitting a prestigious golf tournament – with the hope of making it one of the biggest and best events on the Ladies’ European Tour calendar. In a unique move on the Ladies’ European Tour – a professionallytailored ‘Masters’ jacket will be presented annually to the winner.

Sarah Heath


Rebecca Hudson, the recent OTP Bank Ladies Central European Open winner, is one of the most in form English players and has really found her feet in this, her fourth year on the Ladies European Tour. After a remarkable amateur career, (Rebecca was the British Amateur Champion in 2000 and won almost every other title available), great things were expected of her as a professional. This year, she duly delivered by posting her first Tour win in July and her first career win in the Acer Women’s South African Open in March. She also won the South African Tour’s Order of Merit. At the time of going to press, Rebecca had posted five top ten finishes and was ranked fifth in Europe.

“...plans to make a special appearance in the UK this October will no doubt give the galleries something to cheer about.” Danielle Masters

It will be the fourth Ladies European Tour event to take place in the UK along with the Weetabix Women’s British Open, Ladies English Open and Wales Ladies Championships, highlighting the growth and strength of women’s professional golf in the UK. The tournaments will all provide an excellent show case for home grown talent and the Ladies English Open as the next event on the schedule is already attracting a strong line up. Kent’s very own Karen Stupples, the 2004 Weetabix Women’s British Open Champion, aims to win again on home soil and will no doubt be making her presence felt atop the leader board. The two-time winner bases herself in Orlando, Florida for most of the year, but plans to make a special 046

appearance in the UK this October will no doubt give the galleries something to cheer about. Trish Johnson, who has won 17 titles in a career spanning 19 years, will be another player who will be determined to fight for her national title. Fiercely competitive, Johnson is a veteran of seven Solheim Cups, (the women’s equivalent of the men’s Ryder Cup) and is aiming for her first victory since the 2004 Wales Ladies Championship. The 2005 Wales Ladies Champion, Kirsty Taylor, is another strong contender. Taylor finally scooped her first victory last year in spectacular fashion at the Wales Ladies Championship and set an all-time Tour record of 11under-par 61 in the first round, beating tournament favourites Johnson and Laura Davies.

Liza Walters

Karen Stupples

Georgina Simpson, a player yet to clinch her first win as a professional, is another talented golfer to watch out for at Chart Hills, along with up-and-coming players Kirsty S Taylor, Liza Walters, Fame More, Sarah Heath and Danielle Masters. Danielle represents Chart Hills Golf Club and with her considerable knowledge of the course will have a distinct advantage over the rest of the field. She is in her first year on the Ladies European Tour and missed the cut when she played the event on a sponsors invitation in 2004, but with her added experience will be hoping to improve on that this time.

Georgina Simpson

Lancashire’s Lora Fairclough, who has played on tour for 15 years, mastered Chart Hills when she won the Ford Golf Classic at the venue in 1995. The six-time tournament

winner also set a course record 64 at Chart Hills in the final round of the 2004 Ladies English Open, only to be equalled by eventual winner Maria Hjorth, so she could easily repeat the feat this October. Diane Barnard, a two-time tournament winner from Blackpool, rounds out the group of English players in the field. It’s a strong line up and each English player will be doing their best to take the national trophy, but they will have a tough task to beat the reigning champion Maria Hjorth from Sweden. Hjorth has won the event for the past two years, and with her fine form this year there is no reason why she couldn’t become the first player to win a Ladies European Tour event three times in succession: an English treble really would be cause for celebration. 047

organising a golf tournament ON THE EUROPEAN TOUR

An incredible amount of organisation goes into making a tournament on the European Tour run smoothly and efficiently - but who is responsible for ensuring a successful event from beginning to end? eat GOLF! takes a look behind the scenes of the Volvo Masters, the end-of-season showpiece open to the top 60 players on the European Tour.


Photo by JLM –

international sponsorship properties. The Volvo Masters is directly planned, managed and promoted by Volvo Event Management, Its headquarters are in Brussels, Belgium, with offices also in Gothenburg, Sweden, and Whitely in the UK.

The Chain of Command Who is ultimately responsible organising the Volvo Masters? The Volvo Event Management operations team. Volvo Event Management is the in-house company jointly owned by Volvo Car Corporation and AB Group charged with the identification, implementation and evaluation of Volvo’s flagship

What role does the European Tour play? George O’Grady and his colleagues at The European Tour have assisted Volvo greatly over the years in establishing the Volvo Masters as the end of season showpiece. The PGA European Tour operates a broad range of business initiatives essential to its primary mission of administering professional tournament golf. George O’Grady, the Executive Director of The European Tour,

heads the administration staff of 120 based at headquarters in Wentworth, Surrey, with a Board of Directors comprising 12 elected past and present Tour Members and a Tournament Com­mittee of 14 players. What role does Valderrama play? Felipe Ortiz-Patiño, President of Valderrama is on hand to make sure that the golf course is in its usual, pristine, manicured condition and that their staff extend the warmest of welcomes to players, officials and visitors.

“...the golf course is in its usual, pristine, manicured condition...”


2005 Spanish Armada. From left: Sergio García, Miguel Angel Jiménez, José María Olazábal, Gonzalo Fernandez-Castaño & José-Manuel Lara

The Players How are the players selected for the event? There is a maximum field of 60 players, who qualify courtesy of their position (1-60) on the European Tour Order of Merit at the conclusion of the Mallorca Classic. Given that there are only 60 players in the field, the Volvo Masters is unique in that there is no halfway cut, where all the golfers play all four rounds. Who organises the travel and accommodation for the payers? Their agents. The majority of the players stay at the NH Almenara Hotel, located very close to Valderrama. The hotel actually has its own 27 hole, Dave Thomas designed golf course, as well as excellent spa and restaurant facilities.


Where does the prize money come from? The PGA European Tour is a unique business which generates profits for the benefit of the Members – the tournament players – who receive their dividends by way of competing and winning prize money. The Volvo Masters offers the richest average prize per player in European golf, with over 4 million euro shared between the select 60 who qualify courtesy of a full season’s form. NH Almenara Hotel

“Given that there are only 60 players in the field, the Volvo Masters is unique in that there is no halfway cut.”

Hole 4, La Cascada, Valderrama. A Trent Jones masterpiece. “It’s probably the best of all my par 5’s” he once said.

The Venue Who selects the venue? Volvo Event Management in coordination with the PGA European Tour. What is it about Valderrama that makes it such a successful venue? It is a world-class golf course for a world-class golf championship. Home to the Volvo Masters, Valderrama also hosted the first Ryder Cup ever staged outside of the Great Britain or America, with Europe edging-out the USA by 141/2 points to 131/2 points in 1997. Designed by the legendary Robert Trent Jones, Valderrama is regarded by the top players in world golf as one of the toughest tests of golf around.

Volvo is also delighted that Valderrama matches the brand’s commitment to environmental excellence, one of the first in Europe to be accredited by the Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary System (ACSS), boating no fewer than nine wildlife sanctuaries within one of the world’s finest golf courses.

“Volvo is also delighted that Valderrama matches the brand’s commitment to environmental excellence...”

What benefits are there to the venue in hosting an event on their course? Major events like the Volvo Masters assist in making Valderrama universally recognised as continental Europe’s finest golf course. Who is responsible for course maintenance during competition? The venue manager/s


The Sponsors What sort of benefits can a sponsor expect to gain from an event? Exposure and awareness. When Volvo decides to sponsor an event or project, the company takes a pro active role in establishing the aims and objectives and what actions are required to achieve these. Partnership with others involved in the project is the watchword and Volvo invests its resources to ensure that the potential of a project is maximised to the benefit of all parties concerned. Volvo brings the quality of its reputation, a worldwide credibility and an unrivalled experience in working on some of the highest profile events and projects in the world. Volvo is clear about its aims and objectives, promoting the brand and the core brand values of Quality, Safety and Environmental Excellence, focused in working with the media to

maximise exposure and works tirelessly and professionally to ensure that the small number of sponsorships in its portfolio are successful in every respect. Who looks after the sponsors, and controls their involvement? The Volvo Event Manager and the PGA European Tour. The Contractors How soon prior to the tournament does preparation begin? The over-all preparation starts already in November, immediately after the event. Who controls all of the contractors, and ensures the work is done correctly and safely? The organisers i.e. Volvo Event Management The Officials How many officials are necessary for the smooth operation of an event? There are around 200 Marshals involved, which includes more than one official following every group. There are some familiar faces 052

such as the excellent starter, Ivor Robson, who has worked on the tour for many years. The Volunteers How many volunteers does a tournament require? 450 volunteers are selected from local golf clubs for their golfing experience and knowledge. Everything role is required to fill, from walking scorers, carry board, TV work to spotters. Peak Performance supply all of the uniforms for the volunteers. The Media How many media representatives are present at the venue? Around 350 What types of media are involved? The organizers i.e. Volvo Event Management. Volvo utilises all available media, and all sectors of those media outlets to communicate its sponsorship message, including sports television and radio, print, photographic and electronic media, and, where possible, news features and business outlets where there is added media value.

The Hospitality Who is responsible for the hospitality facilities? Volvo Event Management offers Volvo guests the ideal environment to relax during an arduous day’s golf watching. On the terrace, in the lounge style bar or in the restaurant, they will receive the best attention and service to be found anywhere on the professional golf circuit. Maneva Consulting offer privileged visitors the chance to dine in the President’s Suite, which has panoramic views of the 17th green and the 18th tee. The President’s Suite is among the world’s most exclusive sporting enclosures.

The Supporters What is it that draws spectators to the Volvo Masters? Record crowds have continually flocked to Valderrama and the Volvo Masters in search of excellence in golf, and have rarely been disappointed; only the top 60 on the European Tour Order of Merit qualify to play and the roll of honour, the portfolio of past champions reads like a Who’s Who of golf.

Marqués de Riscal has been a supporter of the Volvo Masters for some years, supplying some of their finest wines to sponsors

Great players such as Nick Faldo, Colin Montgomerie, Bernhard Langer, Padraig Harrington, Darren Clarke, Ian Poulter,

The President’s Suite


and spectators throughout the end-of-season showpiece, and, whilst the masters of golf are playing their trade at Valderrama, the masters of wine making are preparing for their latest vintage.

President’s Suite Interior

Mel Pyatt / George O’Grady

Fredrik Jacobson, Paul McGinley and local hero Miguel Angel Jiménez have all held the title. The Trophy Who designs the trophy for the winner? Waterford Crystal design and supply the trophy, and have enjoyed a long and distinguished tradition of working with Volvo. The magnificent Volvo Masters crystal trophy was the first in a series of landmark trophies handcrafted by the iconic Irish glassmaker. Waterford Crystal is distinctive from most other makes in that it comprises 32% lead as opposed to the more usual 24%, which gives pieces such as the trophy such magnificent prismatic qualities of light refraction. No golfer in the history of the Volvo Masters has ever held aloft the famous Waterford Crystal two years in succession.

Felipe Ortiz-Patiño

Waterford Crystal Trophy

thought control the way you think can enhance your performance or weaken it!


By Allison Dyer, BSc, MSc, C.Psychol, Total Sport Psychology

We all have an ongoing inner dialogue running through our minds - a stream of

What are the consequences of thinking unhelpful, deconstructive or negative thoughts on the golf course? Anxiety, Annoyance, Doubt, Concern

conversation or chatter. The majority of this self-talk


will be comprised of ordinary, everyday thoughts such as, “I must remember to put the

Change in rhythm and tempo

rubbish out today” “I wonder what the weather will be

Change in performance

like on Sunday” and so on.

However, when our self-talk assumes negative undertones, for example, “I bet I don’t make this putt” “I´m not going to miss that water obstacle”, “I hate this hole, I never play well on this hole” we run the risk of triggering a chain reaction of events that can affect our golf negatively. A direct connection exists between the way you think and the way you perform. The way we think, affects the way we feel and the way we feel affects the way we act.

You will enhance your performance if you gain control over your thought processes.

NB: Not all negative thoughts are necessarily bad. Some negative thoughts are potentially useful - they act as alarm signals, a warning that we need to take action e.g. “Oh no, this is a wedge shot and I haven’t practised my wedge play for ages.” ACTION: To build wedge play practice into my next weeks practice sessions.

Regular negative self talk can also lead to the development of a limiting belief or set of limiting beliefs. For example, take the golfer who continually tells himself on arriving at the 9th hole at his local club that he will not miss the water obstacle. It is likely that this way of thinking will result in the chain reaction described above. On approaching his shot, his negative thoughts are likely to make him feel apprehensive and nervous. His rhythm and tempo will be disrupted and he will probably end up steering the shot rather than taking a nice, fluid swing. The chances are that his ball will end up finding the water and so a self-fulfilling prophecy cycle has occurred! Your mind should be your greatest asset not your biggest enemy! Commit to taking charge of your thinking on the golf course. Remember - they are your thoughts – you can decide what you want to listen to. The way you choose to think can enhance your performance or weaken it. You cannot stop thoughts popping into your mind but you can train yourself to deal with these thoughts effectively. You control your thoughts, not the other way round.


Choose to think helpful, constructive, empowering thoughts.

How Can You Gain Control Over Your Thoughts? It can be helpful to formulate a thought plan and experiment with it over a number of weeks in practice and then competition.

Tips: You can deal with these thoughts by planning more constructive and useful alternative thoughts.

Thought Plan Action One - Become Aware of Your Thoughts: • Become aware of your selftalk. Acknowledge what you are thinking generally e.g. around the supermarket, in the car on the way to work, in the shower. Listen to what you are saying to yourself during golf specific occasions e.g. during practice, on the way to the golf course, during your warm up, during competition. • Notice the type of self-talk that is detrimental and unhelpful to your performance.

If this happens... I am on the 9th hole with a water obstacle to negotiate.

I tend to say this... I just know I am going to find that water again!?!?!?!

When I should be saying this... Check my set up, nice and slow, middle of the green.

Action Two - Plan: Where you see undesirable patterns in your thinking, for example: • Negative self talk – “I am a useless putter!?!?!” • Unhelpful self talk – “I might as well give up now and head back into the golf club!?!?!” • Deconstructive self-talk – “Well I think my mother-in-law could chip better than that!?!?!” Challenge these thoughts: • Is the way I am thinking helping me to play well? • Am I thinking as my ideal golfer would think? • What are the advantages/ disadvantages of thinking this way? • What would be a more constructive way of interpreting this situation? • What would be more useful for me to focus on?


OR If this happens... I am not playing well.

I tend to say this... I have only got five holes left to recover my score!?!?!?!

• It is useful to identify the times that you usually fall into negative thinking e.g. on the drive to the golf club, as you are warming up, on the first tee, before a particular hole, after a bad shot etc. If you can recognise those times you may be able to catch yourself before you start! • Emphasise self-instructing, motivational, simple and present tense replacement thoughts. • Plan and rehearse what you are going to say to yourself beforehand. Action Three – Re-Frame: • When you notice yourself thinking in an unhelpful way take control of your thoughts. • Take a nice even breath to slow the situation down and regain control. • Pinch your nose/Adjust the Velcro on your glove/Visualise a STOP sign. • Repeat to yourself “I refuse to carry on thinking like that”. • Be forceful with yourself. • Substitute that thought with one of the positive and constructive thoughts you have identified. Action Four – Take Control of Your Thinking: • Choose to think helpful, constructive, empowering thoughts. Summary

When I should be saying this... Keep it simple - trust your preshot routine! It makes sense to play one shot at a time. Look after the process and the outcome will look after its self.

Thought control entails recognising what you are focusing your thoughts on and then choosing to listen to helpful, positive and constructive advice. This is not an easy feat to pull off and will take some time, so be patient and persevere. Practice is the key!

how to pitch... OVER WATER!

By Patrick Brady, PGA Professional Ping clothing supplied by Golf Europa


This shot can fill the high handicap golfer with fear, and cause them to become very negative. Most golfers will try and lift the ball over the water, which causes them to sit back and catch the ball on the upswing.

“...don’t let your right hand take over, and put full trust in the left side!” The result is a full top, or a lot of turf being taken before the ball. Both shots usually result in the ball going in the water. As you can see in the picture, my belt buckle is facing the target in the follow through. I feel that my left hand grip pressure is a little bit tighter than normal.

I am pulling through with the left side of my body. By holding the club tighter, it makes me more aware of my left side, encouraging me to work hard at committing to a full turn. Most of us are right handed, but don’t let your right hand take over, and put full trust in the left side!


get a grip! By David Poulton PGA Professional, KZG World Top 100 Club Fitter 2006

The grips that golfers use are as varied as hibiscus in Sri Lanka, but elite golfers all obey one rule, they grip the club in the fingers. If you are able to close your fingers without discomfort, the grips fitted to your clubs should enable you to close your fingers around the club comfortably and in a relaxed fashion. The size of the grip is only a reference point to begin the grip fitting process. Don’t fall for the ridiculous myth that grips which are too thick cause a slice. Tension in the hands is a sure way to start slicing your ball. If the hands are relaxed the hands will always work well enough to provide snap in the swing and square the face up. If you feel your hands are more relaxed with thicker grips, and your grip is correct, you will not experience any problems with slicing. As a rule, golfers with smaller hands will require smaller grips so that they are able to close the fingers around the grip, but remember - No Tension. If you fall into the category of golfer who finds discomfort in closing his/her fingers, and have only one option but to run the club through the palm of your hand you may want to try the non-tapered grips as used in the ‘Natural Golf’ philosophy - where there is little to no hand rotation. 062

“The majority of grips these days are slip-on grips divided into soft and hard types, and there are several variations on the market.”

The majority of grips these days are slip-on grips divided into soft and hard types, and there are several variations on the market. Rubber grips are a blend of liquid rubber and granulated cork, pressure moulded and then sanded and painted. These grip are easy to install and some have reminder marks or ribs running down them. These are firmer grips which give greater feedback from the clubhead (good for wedges). Polymer grips are soft and absorb vibration so you have less feedback from the clubhead (good for medium and long irons). These are good grips for the average golfer, but are more expensive than rubber. Leather grips are made of cowhide or calf skin, these grips are wrapped around the shaft and have a soft feel and provide excellent tackiness, but are very expensive. Corded grips are corded with strands of thread which creates a rough non-slip grip, but it does tend to wear out gloves quite quickly (my favourite grip for a driver). They are also heavier with the cord.

The weight of a grip is paramount when either changing your present grips or choosing grips for your new set. Changing the grip from a 50 gram grip to a 40 gram grip would increase the swing weight considerably depending on the club specification. Most grips on the market are between 35 grams and 65 grams, but that is assuming the set is going to be a traditional swing weight. There is nothing crazy about adding weight to a grip to put more weight under the hands, as this can aid any golfer who has a faulty start to the downswing (casting). Jack Kuykendall experimented for three and a half years with grip weights and discovered the perfect weight for a grip was 90 grams, so don’t be afraid to experiment. Final Thought The golf swing is not a mad rush with the body. The club should be swung with the hands, so make sure your contact with the club is secure, relaxed and correct, and a well fitted grip can help you achieve this.

Images courtesy of Winn Grip. For more information visit 063

technological ADVANTAGE


GOLF! visits a

Callaway Golf demo day to test their OptiFit Driver System which allows every golfer to take advantage of the technology previously only available to staff players such as Phil Mickleson.


The tip of the OptiFit shafts and the design of the hosel have been configured to replicate the exact feel of a regular Fusion FT-3 Driver. A torque wrench is inserted through the base of the club head, and at 33 ft / sp inch pressure the system clicks, leaving you safe to hit shots in a matter of seconds.

The OptiFit Driver System allows you to test up to 13 Fusion FT-3 Driver clubheads with 30 different shafts, giving a staggering 690 club configurations to choose from. Each shaft can be interchanged with any clubhead, eliminating the guesswork in selecting the correct driver setup for your game. A beginner golfer, for example, can discover which loft and shaft flex will suit their swing, while the advanced golfer can use the system to fine-tune the setup of their driver to achieve a specific feel or ball flight. The key to the efficiency of the system is that the swingweight and CG positions in the fitting clubs are identical to those of production clubs, with no discernible difference in playability, feel and performance. Combined with the Callaway Performance Analysis System (CPAS), the OptiFit Driver System

is the most accurate and efficient club fitting system we have ever come across. CPAS is capable of capturing multiple images of both the club and the ball utilising highspeed flash and camera technology alongside the most extensive database of ball flight information. By gathering masses of ball flight data, Callaway can now present an accurate simulation of ball flight visually on screen, and can operate indoors or outdoors with equal precision. Demo venues normally use AccuSport’s Vector Launch System technology which is a more portable and lightweight computer system similar to the CPAS. Many Callaway Golf retailers now have the OptiFit Driver System on-site. It is recommended that you check its availability with the demo venue before travelling. For more details & information visit: 065

plane & simple With Nick Lane, PGA Professional

There are many golf swing aids available on the market which promise much, but deliver little. eat

GOLF! takes a look at the Explanar system with

Nick Lane, and finds a system that lives up to its claims.



In order to participate in this tips section, you will need to find your nearest Explanar Centre. Log on to where there is a useful search tool to help you locate one easily. First we will let Nick explain the benefits this revolutionary system will have on your game... Whether you are a beginner looking to build a good golf swing in a short space of time, or an advanced player trying to eliminate ingrained swing faults, Explanar is the easiest and quickest method I have ever come across to give players the correct feelings associated with the golf swing. There are many benefits to using the Explanar, including achieving the optimal biomechanical swing plane for your build, increased power and distance, learning how to work the wrists through the swing, and building muscle memory and fitness. Not only that, but this device can train your short game pitching and chipping as well. It sounds too good to be true, and in reality it is. The biggest difficulty I have as a teaching professional is to help players convey swing thoughts into swing feelings, and now the Explanar does exactly that. I will take you through some of the steps I would with a new pupil to show you how the Explanar works. With a weighted roller to represent the golf club, the trainee takes their stance, posture and grip within the Explanar hoop. Placing the roller on the device, the player can then begin to slowly swing back and forth along their correct swing plane. With my assistance and advice, I can ensure that the golfer is maintaining the correct width in their swing, as well as working on the wrist hinge and body rotation.

The roller trains and builds the golfing muscles, creating a dynamic and athletic swing

The Explanar is as simple to work with as it looks, and for the more advanced player the radial stance mat provides the necessary information to learn how to perform draw and fade shots at will. By rotating the feet around the markings the player can feel the changes in backswing and follow through positions, giving more consistent results on the course. Gradually building into the backswing 068

A good follow through with full release

There are three different versions of the Explanar to suit your size and budget. In addition to the professional system, there are also home (pictured) and junior versions available. The benefits of owning a home system is that with the recommended 20 minutes a day - 10 in the morning and 10 in the afternoon - you will soon develop a swing groove and build the correct muscles for increased power and distance on the course. I would recommend starting with a professional coach however, as guidance in using the system correctly and safely will ensure you get the best out of it. The importance of the fin at the top of the hoop, for example, demonstrates to the player whether they have the club on the correct plane and that the system is properly adjusted to their height. Designed by Luther Blacklock, the Explanar is also used by top coaches such as Butch Harmon in his School of Golf at Rio Secco Golf Club, Hendersan, Nevada. Peter Cowen, the Number one coach in Europe and one of the World’s leading teachers has also incorporated the Explanar Golf Training System into his Academies in Rotherham, UK and Dubai. Cowen explains: “Explanar’s a terrific learning tool and we are having great success with it. The spoken word is never enough. Feeling promotes rapid understanding and sends the correct message to the brain. People talk about muscle memory, but the muscles will only do what the brain tells them. Explanar gets that message to the brain more quickly. Proper movement then becomes much easier. In my opinion Explanar is the ultimate feel machine.”

The fin is a reference point which indicates when you are swinging on your optimum plane

Whatever level of golf you play, we certainly recommend you give the Explanar a try and feel the benefits for yourself.

Photos taken at Positive Golf, Marbella. Winter training ground for the PGA EurPro Tour. For more information visit:

Swinging through the sternum 070

In position and on plane

golf fitness AND NUTRITION

Juan Barberis is an Internationally Certified Golf Fitness Trainer who works with amateur and professional golfers to improve their “golf shape�.

He conducts thorough assessments and provides individualized fitness and nutrition programs that enable golfers to enjoy the game more by remaining pain and injury free and also by hitting drives further and more accurately on a consistent basis. eat GOLF! caught up with him to find out more.



“Fitness is a must for the general population, whether you are a golfer or not, and ensures a happy disposition and improves self-confidence.”

Could you tell us a little about your background and how you came to be a golf fitness trainer? First of all, I would like to say that assisting golfers to improve their games is one of the most satisfying professions anyone could have. I really enjoy what I do. It allows me to encourage and train golfers to become better and not only improve their games, but often improve their lives! I came to be a golf fitness trainer about three years ago after a successful career in international marketing and sales which took me to over thirty countries and allowed me to develop businesses for entrepreneurial firms such as Dell. I had gotten tired of the long hours and the travel so a close friend of mine recommended that I return to college and “re-educate” myself as a personal trainer. Since my friend and I are very much alike in that we enjoy competing in sports and also assisting others, I acted on his advice and returned to college in Southern California to earn a degree as a personal trainer.

While I was studying, the director of the program introduced me to Dr. Joseph Zappala, founding member of the Nike Golf Player Staff, who was also a very successful chiropractor and golf fitness trainer. Dr. Zappala had been in business for eighteen years catering primarily to golfers and had a very professional staff that included a family medicine physician, physical therapists, and other golf fitness trainers. His clients were mostly amateur golfers, but very dedicated to the game, and often competing for titles. Among his clients were some outstanding golfers that even had the opportunity to play with Tiger Woods during a Pro-Am. I was very impressed with the organization, and began working for Dr. Zappala while I was earning my science degree. Within a few weeks I had learned how to properly conduct assessments and put together training programs for golfers. I started slowly and as I developed my reputation with clients, I gained referrals and my business started to grow. I attribute the growth of my business to my sound technical knowledge of the golf swing and how to properly work the related muscles. Additionally, I was able to leverage my teaching and leadership skills developed during my days in the corporate world to influence my clients positively. In time, I graduated with my science degree and earned my international certifications as a health care provider in CPR / First Aid, as well as a Personal Trainer and as a Golf Conditioning Specialist. I had always dreamed of living in southern Spain so this past June I moved to the Costa del Sol. I am fortunate to have family and close friends that live close by


so we are often getting together for dinner parties, rounds of golf, or attending Marbella or Sotogrande´s jazz festivals and polo matches. The quality of life in the Costa del Sol is outstanding so I am very grateful to be here! In general, how aware are golfers of their fitness? In the last five years, with the advent of Tiger and other top golfers such as Sergio Garcia, Annika, Michelle Wie and Camilo Villegas, among others, amateur and professional golfers have become aware that golf requires a certain level of fitness. Whether amateur or professional, golfers are very interested in enjoying the game pain and injury free. They also want to hit drives further and want to hit them further consistently. Golfers are realising that one of the most important factors that allows golfers to improve and enjoy their game is the fitness of their body - how flexible and strong it is and how well the mind and body work with regards to balance. Obviously, working with a golf teaching pro to properly train their swing is a must, but the body is the single most important component. Many of my clients are amateur golfers aged 45+ and they have stated to me that they continue to train their bodies in order to play consistently into their 60s and even 70s - their golf games have improved and so has their quality of life. Another portion of my client base are young and competitive golfers. They have read article after article on Tiger Woods regarding his fitness regimen and want to follow suit with the hope of some day playing in major tournaments. They are dedicated and listen

attentively to my advice. Fitness training has become a habit for them that keeps them well and is improving their golf games. I think in the next couple of years, we will see that golfers of all ages undertake a fitness regimen. Fitness can be lots of fun and the rewards are priceless! Is fitness in golf something that is solely for professionals? Absolutely not! Fitness is a must for the general population, whether you are a golfer or not, and ensures a happy disposition and improves self-confidence. Additionally, a fitness program decreases stress and is noticeable by most clients shortly after undertaking their program. Golfers benefit not only from better health and less stress, but also see their golf games improve. What most golfers do not realize is that the golf swing is not a natural movement of the body - it is very stressful on the structural components of the body such as muscles, ligaments, and tendons. In order to properly execute a golf swing on a consistent basis the body must be trained to be flexible and strong while also remaining in balance. By learning how to properly warm-up, stretch, and work-out, both amateur and professional golfers are benefiting greatly and are having more fun playing the game. How seriously should the average golfer take their fitness? This is a great question. The other day, I was visiting a physical therapist in Marbella and she commented on the numerous “emergency visits” that she gets during the year from holiday golfers who have injured themselves on the golf course. Golf is truly a sport. It creates demands on the body and golfers must realize that in

order to enjoy the game they must learn how to keep themselves well. Additionally, as we age and although we “think that our bodies are the same as they were in our 20s”, we undergo tremendous physiological changes that decrease our musculature, flexibility, and balance. This being said, by following a proper nutrition and fitness regimen, we can regain this musculature, flexibility, and balance. Perhaps the greatest pleasure that I get is from training individuals that thrive on their workouts and have attained good health. They play golf three or four times a week and truly enjoy their work-out sessions. Does fitness mean going to the gym? Everyone is different and some golfers enjoy going to their gym while others like to workout in their homes. I have catered to both types of clients. The key is for the client to make a conscious decision to improve his or her golf fitness. Then, one of my primary roles is to properly motivate them by listening carefully to their likes and dislikes and developing programs taking in mind this information. With regards to a golf assessment and training equipment, I own the necessary equipment and transport it to clients´ homes or to their gyms. I use the best and safest equipment available for training clients in flexibility, musculature, and balance. I also have specialised equipment to measure and improve their club head speed. In most cases, I work closely with the client´s teaching pro so that I clearly understand his/her objectives and am complementing their efforts.

What sort of benefits can a client expect to see by following your advice, and how quickly would they expect to see results? The benefits are numerous. The most immediate benefit, as with most properly designed fitness programs, is less stress in daily life. This is an immediate benefit and can be ascertained within the first week or two of working out. The next benefit most clients experience takes place within three weeks to a month of working out and it is the elimination of most pain. In the case that a client has a pre-existing injury or is experiencing pain, I always work with the client´s physician and follow a prescribed stretching, strength, and balance program given the condition. Ultimately, clients want to develop their “perfect swing” - an effective and consistent golf swing that enables them to hit the ball further and with greater control. As all clients are different the time expectation to reach this objective differs, but in general, I need to work with a client and their golf teaching pro for a year or more. What most golfers do not realize is that their bodies are phenomenal pieces of equipment and that they must be cared for in detail and with consistency in order to ensure their optimal performance. Once a client decides to undertake a fitness and nutrition regimen, changes start to take place slowly at the cellular level and are not visible to the human eye for at least eight weeks. The body starts to change slowly. Muscle fibers increase in size and become more flexible.

“What most golfers do not realise is that their bodies are phenomenal pieces of equipment and that they must be cared for in detail...” 075

“The stretching routine needs to encompass every big muscle group involved in the golf swing. I normally encourage clients to start by stretching their lower body and then move up.”

Tendons and ligaments also start to become more flexible and then slowly pain, such as lower back or shoulder pain, start to go away. Coordination is also increased slowly by following proven golf movement exercises as the brain starts to work better with the body. With age, we all start to loose our balance and coordination which increases the possibility for injury. The good news is that this whole process can be reversed, as long as we adhere to the laws of Mother Nature and not rush towards our objectives. Gary Player, perhaps the godfather of modern golf fitness, said at a Champions Tour event in Atlanta, Georgia... “look up and down this range... you will not see anyone over 60 out here who is really fat. That is because bodies wear out. To play the game forever you have to keep your body in shape”. Because of Gary´s commitment to keep his body in shape, he is the only man in history to win professional events in six different decades. Gary was ahead of his time, but perhaps, he simply realized that the benefits of keeping his body well were countless. For those who do not have the time, is there a quick and easy solution to golf fitness? This is another good question. Unfortunately, most people including golfers pay more attention to the condition of their automobiles than to their bodies. Modern life also keeps most people very busy and blinds them from 076

the need to honour their bodies and keep them well. I always try to encourage all golfers to pay proper attention to the condition of their bodies, educating them on the benefits. Tiger, Annika, and Sergio Garcia as well as numerous amateur golfers, including several of my clients, have become convinced that proper fitness and nutrition is a must for them. They simply have made this aspect of their lives a priority and are working with personal trainers to ensure that they maximize their results. I think this is the proper way of viewing fitness and nutrition. We really cannot cut corners if we want to remain well and benefit from health, our greatest asset. Sometimes, the circumstances have it that a golfer travels regularly and does not have the time to train with me regularly. If this is the case, I offer a personalised assessment session, one-on-one training when they are available, and online training sessions when they are away. The key again to overall health and improved golf games is making time on a consistent basis to follow the personalised program. There are no quick and easy solutions to golf fitness. If an individual does not have the time necessary to dedicate to his/her health, I politely decline to take them as a client. Nevertheless, I encourage them to spend at least 30 minutes daily in an aerobic activity that they enjoy.

This exercise will assist them in managing stress, and often improve their sleep patterns as well as help them manage their blood pressure. Additionally, I recommend that they spend 15-30 minutes stretching their bodies. Stretching has immediate benefits in that oxygen and nutrients are transported to all the body´s cells more efficiently and effectively. Within a short period of time, they will notice a greater level of energy and feel better. Perhaps in the future, they will have more time and I would be happy to assist them. How and for how long should a person warm-up before playing a round of golf? The warm-up needs to be a combination of several components forming a routine to ensure a fun, injury-free, day playing golf. For example, if the round is to be played in the early morning, a thorough warm-up would have as its first component eating a healthy, balanced, and hearty breakfast. Most golfers do not realize that breakfast is the most important meal of the day as is starts our metabolism and provides us with needed energy. Following breakfast, the golfer needs to allow for proper digestion in the next hour and a half and can assist this digestion by walking around instead of remaining seated. After this proper digestion has taken place, the golfer can do 15-20 minutes of cardiovascular work or settle into a stretching routine. Tiger Woods and other golfers both professional and amateur have found that they enjoy this cardio workout on tournament days. It is simply a matter of choice. The cardio workout can be as simple as walking at a fast pace or using an exercise bike while reading a magazine or the paper. The key is knowing what one enjoys and following a routine that helps the body and mind to prepare for the day.


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The stretching routine needs to encompass every big muscle group involved in the golf swing. I normally encourage clients to start by stretching their lower body and then move up i.e. hamstrings, quads, hips, lower back, upper back, and then shoulder and wrist muscles. During the stretch session, I ask clients to pay close attention to their breathing patterns. Breathing should be from the bottom of their stomachs and exhaled slowly and fully as they conduct their stretches. Proper breathing patterns have a direct impart on golf games as with proper breathing one concentrates better. After the stretching routine is complete, I instruct golfers to ensure that they have proper amounts of water and mid-round snacks for the day. Good choices for mid-round snacks are energy bars, nuts, bananas, or apples. What sort of golfing injuries do you regularly come across, and how can they be avoided? I have come across numerous injuries while working with clients ranging all the way from toe injuries and painful foot arches to lower back pain and “golfers elbow”. Most of the injuries are centered around the back and neck, the rotator cuff (shoulder), the elbow, and the wrist and are caused by muscle tears, tendonitis, or ligament strains. It has been my experience that golfers often bring a previous injury to the game and continue to play with pain often causing a second injury. As a trained health care provider, I conduct a thorough health and fitness assessment with each client prior to the start of any program with the purpose of identifying any pain or injury. If pain or injury is found, I ask the client for permission to contact their physician to gain an accurate


diagnosis and input into a proper rehabilitation training program. For those clients that are pain and injury-free, it is easy to keep them healthy as long as they follow the fitness program as detailed. What effect does your diet have on your golf? I have personally witnessed the wonderful effects of proper diet and hydration on my body and have ensured that my clients are aware of the nutrients that they are consuming and the effect these nutrients are having on their own bodies. Because carbohydrates are the main fuel for exercising muscles, I explain to them that it is extremely important that at least 55-65% of total daily calories come from carbohydrates. I also point out to them the importance of maintaining their bodies properly hydrated and when to drink water as opposed to sports drinks such as Gatorade. It is important for them to realize that a simple loss of 2% in body weight due to perspiration will decrease their performance, so they need to hydrate regularly while out on the course. I am also a big proponent of educating clients on the different types of fats and assisting them to identify healthy foods in order to reduce their risk of cardiovascular disease. I use a leading-edge software program that allows me to enter a client´s meal history and provides me with a detailed breakdown of these foods with regards to calories, carbohydrates, fats, protein, vitamins, and minerals so that I am able to provide the client with specific suggestions on how to improve his/her condition. Proper nutrition definitely has a big impact on how one feels and on how one performs on the golf course - without a doubt!

“It has been my experience that golfers often bring a previous injury to the game and continue to play with pain often causing a second injury.”

To improve your “golf fitness” and quality of life please contact: Juan Barberis, American Council on Exercise (ACE) Personal Trainer and Golf Conditioning Specialist throughout the Costa del Sol at telephone: (+34) 670 565 590 or Email: service@mygolfadvantage. com. His customer testimonials can be viewed at: Juan will be making a regular contribution to the magazine, starting next issue with attaining proper nutrition and hydration for optimal golf performance.

SHARE SALE SPECIAL LIMITED OFFER Designed in 1973 by Gary Player, El Paraiso is one of the most established courses on the Costa del Sol. As one of the few clubs fully owned by members, reinvestment into the course has for the past 10 years been the highest priority and as a result, the course now ranks as one of the highest quality courses in the area. El Paraiso Golf Club has earned its reputation as the friendliest golf club on the coast over the years with their fantastic social events throughout the year. We ensure that all new members are welcomed and made to feel immediately at ease. Just pop along to the club, meet the members, and find out for yourself how easy it is to join.

SHARE OFFER INCLUDES Golf Share • Entrance fee Membership (until 01/01/07) • Share transfer fee ALL FOR JUST £23,950 INTERESTED IN JOINING? For an appointment to discuss membership or to view our course and facilities, please contact our offices on: +34 952883835 or send an e-mail to:

Is your dream to live in Spain and play golf every day of the year? When you join El Paraiso Golf Club your dreams can come true!

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Photo courtesy of RT Jones Jr.

Robert Trent Jones What makes a course great? Before his death in 2000, at age 93, Robert Trent Jones designed and remodelled some 400 courses in 45 states in the U.S. and in 35 foreign countries - making him one of the most prolific golf course designers of the 20th century. The following is an extract from the book ‘Golf’s Magnificent Challenge’ written by Robert Trent Jones with Larry Dennis.

What is it, really, that makes a golf course great? Bob Jones had perhaps the best definition. He believed that a great course must be a source of pleasure to the greatest possible number of players and that it requires strategy, the use of the mind, as well as skill, the God-given use of muscles. If it lacked these aspects, it could not continue to hold the player’s interest. He also felt that it must give the average golfer a fair chance, at the same time demanding the utmost from the more skilled player. I could not agree more. Beauty alone, although it certainly adds to the pleasure of playing, does not necessarily make a course great. One of the best expressions I’ve ever heard is that “there is no golf in some courses.” That means the course is dull. It has 080

no feel to it. It may be flat, the greens not built up, the bunkers are all looking the same. It has no variety, no flexibility, no challenge. It simply lacks character. The basic ingredients of greatness is character, that quality of strong, individual factors that make a hole and a course stand out over others. It boils down to playing value, which translates into shot values. They are inextricably entwined. Shot value simply means the premium placed on a particular shot, and it is dependant on the ability of an individual to perform that shot. At the same time, the parameters must be clearly defined. A perfect shot must be rewarded. A shot slightly off target should give the player some difficulty in executing his next stroke. A bad shot should carry with it a penalty, forcing the player to make a skilful shot to recover.


“He was sort of the innovator... He did a lot of things that others would not do. He moved a lot more dirt. He created different types of bunkering.” Jack Nicklaus


And the values of a hole should be clearly defined, so that the player can see at a glance what he is faced with, whether it be rough, bunkers, boundaries, trees, water or simply poor position. He should know his opportunities and his restrictions. How he reacts to these determines his worth as a player. Considering that, we are really talking about degrees of difficulty. And we are talking about fair for all levels of golfers. If a professional can hit an 8-iron 140 yards but you must use a 4-iron to cover the same distance, then a particular hole location on the green might be fine for him but would be terribly

unfair for you. So the architect must find a way to get you closer to the green for your approach shot or provide a hole location on the green that you will be able to reach. Ben Hogan, who may have played the game better than any golfer in history and certainly played it more thoughtfully than most, once said, “A good golf hole should have both character and appeal. It shouldn’t ask a golfer to play shots that are beyond his ability, but it should present him with an interesting challenge and reward him when he hits the shots that are called for. Golf is a game in which you play your first shot

Kananaskis Country Golf Course, Alberta, Canada One of the premier golf destinations in the Canadian Rockies and second to none as a spectacular location for a golf vacation. Forming an unforgettable landscape, the rugged surrounding mountains tower 10,000 feet above sea level, the courses themselves are at almost 5,000 feet. For more information visit: Photograph by Aidan Bradley.

on a hole in order to play your second from the best position, and so on. It’s a thinking game, a game of controlling the ball.” In other words, a course should have the versatility to be made less punishing, but still challenging, for the average player without spoiling the character or playing value for the expert. Length is not the benchmark, but design is. No matter how far you are capable of striking the ball, each hole should force you to think out the shot you must play. Then it must make you execute it. That is the test of a great golf course. Make the game fun for everybody. Never make a course so penal that a golfer who is not a great player will take so many strokes, be so embarrassed and so miserable that he will give up the game. They are the game. Without them there would be no one to appreciate the great tournament players. And how many of them would there be if they were all out there shooting 130 every day?

That philosophy may sound strange coming from a man who has a reputation, in certain circles, as a fiend when it comes to designing difficult golf course. But those circles almost always encompass the touring professionals, or those they have influenced. Yes, I design very difficult golf courses for that calibre of player, as well I should, for very good reasons. Professionals complain a lot, I’ve found. They seem to want fairway traps from which they can reach the green, holes that are not too long, rough that is not too deep, greens that are dead-flat. That may be an exaggeration, but they do seem to object to severe tests. Perhaps if I made a living playing golf I would feel the same, but the fact is that if we turn golf into a putting contest, nobody will care and there won’t be a living. The quality of a golf course is usually in the eye of the beholder. Usually the view depends on the beholder’s success that day. In the 1962 American Golf Classic in

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Akron, Ohio, after I had remodelled Firestone Country Club into a stern test of golf, Bob Rosburg shot 78 in the second round and damned every tree and trap on the course. The next day he shot 65 and told the press he had never played a finer competitive course. I don’t build courses just for the pros. I worry more about the duffer. Besides, I’ve never built a course on which a professional couldn’t score 65 if he’s playing well. Sometimes I get the idea that they want me to build courses on which they can score in the 60s when they’re playing badly. I’m not a fiend. I don’t hate golfers. I love golfers. That’s why I build them good courses to play. 084

..... My philosophy always has been that every hole should be a difficult par and an easy bogey. Every course should be challenging, but it always should be fun to play. When Bob Jones and I designed Peachtree in Atlanta, I told him, “Bob, I know you want this to be a great championship course, but most of your members are well over sixty. They want a course on which they can have fun.” Fortunately, through the use of long tees and large greens that allow great flexibility, I think we created both at Peachtree. Every golfer gets special enjoyment from playing particular courses. He may not know why, but that doesn’t matter. The fact that he does is sufficient to make those

courses admirable. It means that the architect has incorporated features in the course so superior that anybody instinctively derives joy from playing it. So how does an architect create a course that is great for the best players in the world as well as the highest handicappers? He creates options. In the early days of golf course design and development, most courses were penal, extracting penalties from the player who failed to execute the shot required. There was no other way to go other than over trouble. Facing that kind of hole is disheartening to the high-handicap golfer, who sees a problem that is beyond his

The Adare Golf Club, Co. Limerick, Ireland An 18 hole championship golf course opened in 1995 and set on the 840 acre estate of Adare Manor Hotel & Golf Resort. This was the last major golf course designed by the legendary Robert Trent Jones, Senior. This majestic design has gained international acclaim as one of his finest creations. For more info visit: Photograph by Aidan Bradley Roman Road, Celtic Manor, Wales A championship venue for top professional and amateur events, Roman Road is nevertheless ideal for all levels of play. The course offers a variety of tees on each hole and has generous fairways and greens. For more info visit:


“He liked large greens, undulating greens... Not everyone was in agreement with what he did. He was always doing something different from the other architects.” Hale Irwin capabilities with no alternative available. There is no choice but to play exactly the shot require or get into trouble. Often he can’t even play short because there is trouble there too. Putting such demands on most players is the mark of inept architecture - or perhaps just cruel architecture. In many cases, the penal design of the old courses was unfair because of the degree of punishment for error. A shot that was just slightly off line might catch a deep bunker, for instance, while a badly missed shot would escape the trap and leave the golfer only a pitch to get it close to the hole. Thus he would be the equal, or better, of a golfer who had played an almost perfect shot that missed by inches. Pine Valley in Clementon, New Jersey, a course that many consider the best in the world and is certainly one of my favourites, is an archetypical example of the penal style of design. In this case, the course is not unfair. A badly missed shot usually is penalized more than a slightly missed shot. It is just a very difficult test. On many, if not most, of its holes, long carries over intimidating sandy wastes, chasms or water are demanded, with no alternative route available. It is a course designed for the better player, for whom it is a magnificent challenge. But many players, especially women and short-hitting men, have a great deal of trouble with it and end up in the throes of frustration when

they try it. Pine Valley is a course that is exactly what it was intended to be, one of the most beautiful and demanding layouts in the world. But it is not for everybody. The strategic design, on the other hand, demands that the player think his way around the course to avoid the hazards. There is no way over them. There are undulations and other subtle features that force the player to place his shots in exactly the right place or be faced with a more difficult shot into the green. So the player must plan the route to the green accordingly. The essence of strategic architecture is to encourage initiative and to reward the thinking golfer while penalizing the unthinking golfer. In strategic architecture, well-struck shots are necessary but often may be secondary to the end result. If the player has not thought through to the position he wants to be in when the shot finishes, he may find himself with an impossible next shot to the green. Augusta National, home of the Masters Tournament, is an example. There is no rough, and no long carries over water are demanded, unless a player wants to try for the 13th and 15th, both par-5s, in two shots. But Augusta requires the player to think his way around the course, to position his ball for the shot to the green so he can get it in the right place. If he does not, he is faced with peril on the slick, undulating surfaces or an impossible recovery shot.

Spyglass Hill Golf Course, Pebble Beach, California Spyglass Hill is rated one of the toughest courses in the world from the Championship tees, boasting a course rating of 75.3 and a slope rating of 148. The PGA Tour consistently lists Spyglass Hill’s holes 6, 8 and 16 among the toughest on the tour, and during the 1999 United States Amateur, the stroke average of the field during medal play was in excess of 79. For more information visit: Photograph by Evan Schiller. 086


MetroWest Country Club, Orange County, Florida. A masterpiece of traditional course architecture. A fair, yet demanding challenge to make a pleasurable golf experience for players of all skill levels. For more info Photograph by Aidan Bradley

“What he’s done for golf course design is absolutely phenomenal... He was very artistic in his work. Some of it was landscaping. Some of it was sheer beauty.” Greg Norman

About the book Golf’s Magnificent Challenge Robert Trent Jones with Larry Dennis Printed by McGraw-Hill Publishing Company, 1988 ISBN 0070328161 Now out of print 088

This undoubtedly is the better way for most golfers to play, but there still is something missing. I decided long ago that the better way was a design I labelled heroic, a concept that demands a heroic carry or gamble for the better player to get into a position for a birdie but one that always leaves an option for the lesser player to take the safer route. There must be a just reward for those attempting the heroic carry, and there must be a way around for those unwilling to take the risk. Without the alternate route, heroic carries are unfair. Without the reward, heroic carries are meaningless. If you can play a difficult 200yard shot over a lake, you will have a chance for that birdie and certainly can make par. If you do not successfully make the shot,

you will pay the penalty, and you know it before you start. If you are not capable of that shot, there must be a way for you to go around the lake. It can cost you an extra stroke, and it certainly will diminish your chance for a birdie or a par. But it won’t cost you two strokes, and it will always give you the opportunity, through skilful play, to still make par or birdie. In any event, it will be an easy bogey. At the same time, that route, less risky and demanding, must not be boring or condescendingly easy. There still must be the excitement of meeting your own challenge. It may be a lesser challenge than that faced by the scratch player or the tournament player, but it is a challenge to you that can be met with skilful play within the limits of your particular ability level.

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soulful heritage ARCOS GARDENS

Arcos de la Frontera, located in the heart of Cádiz, Western Andalusia is one of the most beautiful and unspoilt areas of Spain. In keeping with the stunning views, Fernando Mora-Figueroa’s land development company contracted American developer Landmark to design a course to take full advantage of everything its location has to offer. This is a true championship layout, and an experience that will capture the soul of any golfer.


Arcos Gardens Carretera de Algar Km 3, 11630 Arcos de la Frontera, Cádiz Tel.: +34 956 704 131 Fax: +34 956 717 932

“A good all round challenge, the course demands careful positioning from the tee in order to leave the best approach to the green.” Overlooking the traditional white village of Arcos de la Frontera, Arcos gardens is less than two hours away by car for golfers visiting the Costa del Sol, and under an hour away from Seville. Whichever route you take to get there, majestic vistas of the ‘real’ Spain make the trip alone worthwhile. But we are also here for the golf, and thankfully that matches up to the expectations generated along the way.

from the tee. This has become somewhat of a rarity for new courses being built in Southern Spain (mainly due to constructing on very steep terrain) and makes a truly refreshing change. A good all round challenge, the course demands careful positioning from the tee in order to leave the best approach to the green. To score well will also require solid iron play and a good feel on the greens, as is evident from the outset.

The course could be described as a traditional layout, with plenty of space to open your shoulders

Stepping onto the first tee you are faced with a very well designed par 4 dog leg to the right. 091

Taking a driver to get closer to the green brings a bunker into play, and forces you to hit the shot into a narrower gap down the left side. Approaching the green from the left effectively reduces its depth, making good club selection vital. Had you played your drive short of the bunker on the right you would now be looking straight up the length of the green. Though a longer shot, it is more forgiving, and these are the types of questions the course asks throughout your round. The majority of the course is relatively flat, with slight undulations and rolling fairways making for a pleasant walk. The area of holes from the 13th to the 16th meander their way around a hillside, and only the 13th and 14th are true uphill par 4s which offer a welcome variation that lead up to the magnificent views from the 16th tee. Variety in the holes is the key to Arcos Gardens success. The par 3s are a good mixture of distance and difficulty, as are the par 4s. The home stretch sees an exceptionally well thought out challenge that requires great golf shots to score well. The 16th is a par 5 teeing off from the higher ground, and any golfer with desires of reaching the green in two will have the large lake on the left side of the green to contend with.


Developers Landmark are previously responsible for creating high quality golf communities such as PGA West, Kiawah Island and La Quinta. Arcos Gardens displays the quality of such an esteemed architectural background, and they clearly have the perfect formula to create a playable course for the club golfer, which also provides a stern test for the professional. The majority of the trouble is on the left side of the holes, obviously aimed at the better player who tends to draw the ball, and the competition tees extend the length sufficiently to protect it from the longer hitters. Whilst a calm day might leave the course open to birdie hunters, with the prevailing winds this layout will most definately begin to show its teeth.

“The majority of the trouble is on the left side of the holes, obviously aimed at the better player who tends to draw the ball...� With superb practice facilities, a luxurious private country hotel, stylish gourmet restaurant and an abundance of amenities in the surrounding area, Arcos Gardens is an experience not to be missed. Making the trip is akin to a journey of rediscovery about what we enjoy most about golf - all built by a developer with a valued heritage, who have created a golf course with soul.

SPAIN CLUB DIRECTORY GOLF! is distributed in over 50 golf courses, luxury hotels and golf outlets on the Costa del Sol from Alcaidesa to Malaga and Almeria by eat Publishing S.L.






Alcaidesa 127

Arcos Gardens

124,6 San Roque Almenara

Real Club de Sotogrande


La Reserva

133 La Canada


Duquesa Golf


Doña Julia


149 150

El Cortesin CASARES

Albayt Academy Estepona Golf Valle Romano


162 166 167


Flamingos Golf

Atalaya 168

Mediterranean SEA


Monte Mayor


El Paraiso

Marbella Club



Los Arqueros


RONDA La Quinta

La Zagaleta


Los Naranjos

Magna Marbella


Las Brisas Puerto Banus


Dame de Noche


Marbella Golf School Monte Paraiso


Rio Real


Santa Clara


Marbella G&CC Greenlife Golf


Santa Maria




Miraflores / Golf Academy La Cala Santana




El Chapparal 206 Mijas TORREMOLINOS





Grupo Suite






N-340 A-7

ALMERIA Numbers represent the correct Kilometre markings on road signs

Desert Springs Valle del Este

Note: This is a topological map and does not represent the correct scale or distances between locations. ©Eat Publishing S.L.

Please note that where possible all telephone contact numbers are for golf bookings. Dialling code for Spain: +34


1. GIBRALTAR - SOTOGRANDE Alcaidesa Links Golf Course (18) Tel: 956 791 040 Web: The San Roque Club: Old & New Courses (36) Tel: 956 613 030 Web: Almenara Golf (27) Tel: 902 18 18 36 Web: La Reserva de Sotogrande Golf Club (18) Tel: 956 785 252 Web: Real Club de Golf Sotogrande (18) Tel: 956 785 014 Web: Valderrama (18) Tel: 956 791 200 Web: Club de Golf La Cañada (18) Tel.: 956 794 100 Web: 2. SOTOGRANDE - ESTEPONA La Duquesa Golf & Country Club (18) Tel: 952 890 725 Web: Albayt Golf Academy Tel: 952 804 702 Web: Estepona Golf (18) Tel: 952 937 605 Web: 3. ESTEPONA - SAN PEDRO La Resina Golf & Country Club (9) Tel: 952 885 313 Web: Flamingos Golf (18) Tel: 952 889 157 Web: El Paraiso Golf Club (18) Tel: 952 883 835 Web: Atalaya Golf: Old & New Courses (36) Tel: 952 882 812 Web: Guadalmina Golf: North & South Courses (36) Tel: 952 883 455 Web: 4. BENEHAVIS / RONDA Monte Mayor Golf Club (18) Tel: 952 937 111 Web: Marbella Club Golf Resort (18) Tel: 952 889 101 Web: Los Arqueros Golf & Country Club (18) Tel: 952 784 600 Web: Club de Campo La Zagaleta (18) Tel: 952 855 453 Web: 5. NUEVA ANDALUCIA / PUERTO BANUS La Quinta Golf & Country Club (27) Tel: 952 762 390 Web: Los Naranjos Golf Club (18) Tel: 952 812 428 Web: Magna Marbella Golf (9) Tel: 952 929 249 Web: Real Club de Golf Las Brisas (18) Tel: 952 813 021 Web: Aloha Golf Club (18) Tel: 952 907 085 Web: Golf La Dama de Noche (9) Tel: 952 818 150 Web: 6. MARBELLA - FUENGIROLA Golf Río Real (18) Tel: 952 765 733 Web: Santa Clara Golf (18) Tel: 952 850 111 Web: Marbella Golf & Country Club (18) Tel: 952 830 500 Greenlife Golf (9) Tel: 952 839 142 Web: Santa Maria Golf (18) Tel: 952 831 036 Web: www. Cabopino Club de Golf (18) Tel: 952 850 282 Web: Miraflores Golf (18) Tel: 952 931 960 Miraflores Golf Academy Tel: 952 939 381 Web: 7. FUENGIROLA - MALAGA La Noria Golf Resort (9) Tel: 952 587 653 La Cala: North, South & Europa Courses (52) Tel: 952 669 033 Web: Santana Golf & Country Club (18) Tel: 951 062 560 Web: El Chaparral Golf Club (18) Tel: 952 587 700 Web: Mijas Golf: Los Lagos & Los Olivos (36) Tel: 952 476 843 Web: Parador Málaga Golf (18) Tel: 951 011 120 Web: 8. MALAGA - COIN Alhaurín Golf (18) Tel: 952 595 800 Web: Lauro Golf (27) Tel: 952 412 767 Web: 9. ALMERIA Desert Springs - Indiana Course (18) Tel: 637 861 591 Web: Golf Valle del Este (18) Tel: 950 3987 43 Web: 10. CAdiz Arcos Gardens (18) Tel: 956 704 131 Web:

HUSA SUITES DUQUESA GOLF Robert Trent Jones hidden jewel Your Hotel on the 10th tee

Telephone Reservations: + 34 952 89 0425/ 952 89 1211/ 952 89 0725. Fax: + 34 952 89 3005 E-mail: / •

UK CLUB DIRECTORY South East South West Eastern region London Wales Ireland Scotland North East North West East Midlands West Midlands Yorkshire & the Humber

Hotels & Golf Resorts England Ashdown Park Hotel and Country Club Tel: 01342 824988 Web: Dale Hill Hotel and Golf Club Tel: 01580 200112 Web: East Sussex National Golf Resort and Spa Tel: 01825 880088 Web: Five Lakes Hotel, Maldon, Essex Tel: 01621 868888 Web: Hellidon Lakes, Northamptonshire Tel: 01327 262550 Web: Pennyhill Park Hotel, Bagshot, Surrey Tel: 01276 471774 Web: Whittlebury Park Golf and Country Club Tel: 01327 850000 Web: The Windmill Village, Allesley, Coventry Tel: 02476 404040 Web: Scotland Murrayshall House Hotel & Golf Courses, Perth Tel: 01738 551171 Web: The Roxburghe Hotel & Golf Course Tel: 01573 450331 Web: Wales Bryn Meadows Golf & Country Hotel, Cardiff Tel: 01495 225590 Web: Vale Hotel, Golf & Spa Resort, Nr Cardiff Tel: 01443 667805 Web: Ireland The K Club, Straffan, Co. Kildare Tel: +353 (0)1 6017200 Web: Marriott Hotels & Golf Resorts England Marriott Goodwood Park Hotel & Country Club Tel: 0124 3775537 Marriott Forest of Arden Hotel & Country Club Tel: 01676 522335 Marriott Hanbury Manor Hotel & Country Club Tel: 0870 4007222 Marriott Tudor Park Hotel & Country Club Tel: 0162 2734334 Ireland Marriott Druids Glen Hotel & Country Club Tel: +353 (0)1 2870800 Central Marriott Web site: Please note that where possible all telephone contact numbers are for golf bookings. Dialling code for the UK: +44


Golf Clubs England Ashridge Golf Club, Berkhamsted Tel: 01442 842244 Web: Batchworth Park Golf Club, Rickmansworth Tel: 01923 711400 Web: Bearwood Lakes Golf Club, Nr Wokingham Tel: 0118 9797900 Web: Bedford & County Golf Club Tel: 01234 352617 Web: Berkhamsted Golf Club Tel: 01442 865851 Web: Brampton Heath Golf Club, Northampton Tel: 1604 843939 Web: Brocket Hall Golf Club, Welwyn Garden City Tel: 01707 368739 Web: Brookmans Park Golf Club Tel: 01707 652459 Web: Broome Park Golf Club, Barham Tel: 01227 830728 Web: Brickendon Grange Golf Club Tel: 01992 511258 Web: Buckinghamshire Golf Club Tel: 01895 835777 Web: Burhill Golf Club, Walton on Thames Tel: 01932 227345 Web: Camberley Heath Golf Club Tel: 01276 23258 Web: Chart Hills Golf Club, Biddenden Tel: 01580 292148 Web: Chiltern Forest Golf Club, Aylesbury Tel: 01296 631267 Web: Collingtree Park Golf Club, Northampton Tel: 01604 700000 Web: Coventry Golf Club Tel: 024 76414152 Web: Ealing Golf Club Greenford Tel: 020 8997 0937 Web: Finchley Golf Club, Mill Hill, London NW7 Tel: 020 8346 5086 Web: Foxhills Club & Resort, Ottershaw, Surrey Tel: 01932 704468 Web: Frilford Heath Golf Club, Abingdon, Oxon Tel: 01865 390864 Web: Hadley Wood Golf Club, Barnet Tel: 020 8449 4328 Web: Harleyford Golf Club, Buckinghamshire Tel: 01628 816161 Web: Harpenden Common Golf Club Tel: 01582 460655 Web: Hatfield London Country Club Tel: 01707 260360 Web:

Harpenden Golf Club, Hammonds End Tel: 01582 767124 Web: Hartsbourne Golf & Country Club, Bushey Heath Tel: 020 8421 7282 Web: John O’Gaunt Golf Club, Sutton Park, Sandy Tel: 01767 260094 Web: Kent National Golf Club, Brenchley Tel: 01892 724252 Web: Kings Hill Golf Club, West Malling, Kent Tel: 01732 875040 Web: Knole Park Golf Club, Seven Oaks, Kent Tel: 01732 452150 Web: Lamberhurst Golf Club, Kent Tel: 01892 890552 Web: Magnolia Park Golf & Country Club, Boarstall Tel: 01844 239700 Web: Maidenhead Golf Club, Berkshire Tel: 01628 624693 Web: Manor of Groves Hotel, Golf & Country Club Tel: 01279 600777 Web: Mentmore Golf & Country Club Tel: 01296 662020 Web: Mid-Herts Golf Club, Wheathampstead Tel: 01582 832242 Web: Mill Ride Golf Club, Ascot Tel: 01344 891494 Web: Moor Park Golf Club, Rickmansworth Tel: 01923 773146 Web: Muswell Hill Golf Club, London Tel: 020 88881764 Web: Nazeing Golf Club, Essex Tel: 01992 893798 Web: Northampton Golf Club Tel: 01604 845167 Web: North Middlesex Golf Club Tel: 020 8445 3060 Web: Old Fold Manor Golf Club, Barnet Tel: 020 8440 9185 Web: Pine Ridge Golf Club, Surrey Tel: 01276 675444 Web: Prince’s Golf Club, Sandwich Tel: 01304 613797 Web: Rochester & Cobham Park Golf Club, Kent Tel: 01474 823658 Web: Royal Ascot Golf Club, Berkshire Tel: 01344 625175 Web: Royal Ashdown Forest Golf Club, East Sussex Tel: 01342 822018 Web: Royal St. George’s Golf Club, Sandwich Tel: 01304 626931 Web: Sandford Springs Golf Club, Hampshire Tel: 01635 296808 Web: Sandy Lodge Golf Club, Northwood, Middlesex Tel: 01923 825321 Web: Silvermere Golf & Leisure, Surrey Tel: 01932 584300 Web: Singing Hills Golf Club, West Sussex Tel: 01273 835353 Web: Slinfold Park Golf & Country Club, Horsham Tel: 01403 791555 Web: South Herts Golf Club, Totteridge, London Tel: 020 8445 2035 Web: Stockley Park Golf Club, Uxbridge, Middlesex Tel: 020 8813 5700 Web: Stoke Park Club, Stoke Poges, Bucks Tel: 01753 717171 Web: Sunningdale Golf Club Tel: 01344 621681 Web: Swinley Forest Golf Club, Ascot Tel: 01344 620197 Web: N/A The Hertfordshire Golf Club, Broxbourne Tel: 01992 466 666 Web: The London Golf Club, Nr Brands Hatch, Kent Tel: 01474 879899 Web: The Millbrook Golf Club, Bedfordshire Tel: 01525 402269 Web: The Oxfordshire Golf Club Tel: 01844 278 300 Web: Walton Heath Golf Club, Surrey Tel: 01737 812974 Web: Welwyn Garden City Golf Club Tel: 01707 325525 Web: Wentworth Club Tel: 01344 842201 Web: West Kent Golf Club, Downe Tel: 01689 856863 Web: West Malling Golf Club, Nr Maidstone Tel: 01732 844785 Web: Woburn Golf & Country Club Tel: 01908 370756 Web: Woking Golf Club, Hook Heath Tel: 01483 769582 Web: Wyboston Lakes Golf Centre, Bedfordshire Tel: 01480 223004 Web:

dave thomas classic By Dennis Shaw, PGAs of Europe Here they are, casually perched on the balcony of the Marbella Club Resort, three obviously happy golfers with, as a backdrop, the magnificent course created on the lower slopes of the mountains. A regular occurrence, no doubt... except that this trio’s achievements are woven into the post World War 2 fabric of the sport. Nearly 50 European titles between them, 18 Ryder Cups, several high finishes in Major tournaments, World Cup appearances galore, PGA Captaincies, a Ryder Cup Captaincy, PGA Seniors Tour victories and, between them, up to a 150 golf courses designed around the World. 098

Peter Alliss (left), Brian Huggett (centre) and Dave Thomas, enjoying each other’s company, heavily mixed with a dash of nostalgia and good humour, were together for the inaugural Dave Thomas Classic and of them, it can be truly said in modern parlance, where golf is concerned, ‘they’ve been there, done it...’ And they don’t need a T shirt to prove it. Peter, as everyone with the remotest interest in golf must know, is the most popular Voice of Golf, as a commentator on both sides of the Atlantic. Welshman Brian was GB&I Ryder Cup Captain in 1977, the last occasion before it became Europe to face the USA, while Dave was runnerup in two Open Championships

and has since left his signature as a designer across large swathes of some of the world’s most desirable landscapes. None of these, it can be said, are a more interesting and challenging test of golf than the Marbella Club, which was one of many he has designed in Spain. In launching the Dave Thomas Classic a significant donation was raised for Team Research, chaired by England football coach/adviser Terry Venables, on behalf of the Northwick Park Institute for Medical Research. Dave has already enjoyed two distinguished careers, as a player and an architect. Maybe he has just begun a third, as a fund-raiser for a most deserving cause.

Eat Golf! 05  
Eat Golf! 05  

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