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ISSUE 167 APRIL 2015 Tel: 01329 834360 Email: peter.teetimes@gmail.com www.teetimesgolfmagazine.com QUALITY GOLF BREAKS IN WALES . . . READ THIS MONTHS SPECIAL WALES SECTION PAGES 21 TO 28


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Seize the day and take some risks with golf formats, urges big sponsor GOLF is at a crossroads and not keeping up with changes in society, warns one of the sport’s biggest sponsors.

Golf at the crossroads?

With golf returning to the Olympics programme in Rio next year, Giles Morgan, head of sponsorship for HSBC, believes this landmark has thrown up an opportunity that should not be missed. HSBC spends millions of pounds on golf, throwing its financial weight behind several tournaments including The Open, the WGC Champions event in Shanghai, the women’s matchplay and the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship. All of the company’s golf contracts are coming up for renewal this year and Mr Morgan is concerned that the game may be falling behind the times.

‘It’s a crossroads moment,’ he told BBC Sport. ‘I think that we will look back over this period and see where golf has gone. ‘There are lots of positives about golf but the world, particularly with digital communications and people’s time, has

The world, particularly with digital communications and people’s time, has changed in the last 15 years beyond anybody’s wildest dreams. I’m not sure that golf has kept up with that change

‘ Giles Morgan, head of sponsorship for big golf spenders HSBC

changed in the last 15 years beyond anybody’s wildest dreams. I’m not sure that golf has kept up with that change. And therefore I think, because it attracts high investment, has famous superstars, its men and women, its old and young and it’s relatively healthy, there are lots of good reasons it can look at all of the ingredients and then re-bake the cake.’

NOW RORY IS VIDEO No 1 IN real life, Rory McIlroy has replaced Tiger Woods as the number one golfer in the world. Now he has overtaken him in the role of video game star. Woods has been the face of EA Sports’s PGA Tour game since 1998 but he is being succeeded by 25-yearold McIlroy on the box, left. McIlroy will be aiming for the career grand slam this month with the Masters at Augusta.

In cricket, Twenty20 has embraced a whole younger generation to play broadly the same game. There are lots of good reasons for golf to look at all of the ingredients and then re-bake the cake


Groundsman, 20, dies in buggy plunge tragedy A 20-YEAR-OLD golf groundsman died when his buggy plunged into a lake at Celtic Manor Resort in Newport, South Wales. Ollie Floyd was weeding the fairways with his father Nick, 46, when their buggy crashed into freezing water, trapping him inside. Staff on the Twenty Ten Course, which hosted the Ryder Cup in 2010, dived in after the agricultural spraying vehicle and managed to drag Ollie to the water’s edge.

The forthcoming Olympics is not the only reason the game has the chance to embrace a new approach. There will be fresh faces in key leadership roles this year as as chief at the R&A, while the European Tour will appoint a as chief executive.

Tributes: Ollie Floyd and father Nick

‘No-one would have said 25 years ago that Twenty20 cricket would be the success it is, and it has grown.

Emergency services were called and Mr Floyd, from Ross-on-Wye in Herefordshire, was taken to Newport’s Royal Gwent Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. His father was treated for minor injuries, and staff who jumped into the lake in a rescue attempt were treated at the site. The father and son worked on sports pitches and stadiums across the country, including Celtic Manor Resort and the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, for Complete Weed Control Limited.

‘It doesn’t mean that through Test cricket those who are the purists don’t still get their diet. England versus Australia is still vital to the game of cricket, but Twenty20 has embraced a whole younger generation to play broadly the same game.’

Tributes were paid to Ollie by Celtic Manor and members of Ross-On-Wye Rugby Football Club, where he played alongside his father and brother, Tom, and had been named Most Committed Player of the Season shortly before his death.

‘I don’t think the sport’s in trouble,’ said Mr Morgan, ‘but I do think that those who are in charge of the game need to be brave. They need to take some risks.

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If you would like to advertise in Tee Times, or would like to submit any editorial copy for publication, please call us on: 01329 834360, email us at: peter.teetimes@gmail.com, or write to us at: PGL Services Limited, Shedfield House Dairy, Unit 3, Shedfield, Southampton, Hampshire, SO32 2HQ. Whilst every care has been taken in the preparation of this publication, the publishers cannot accept liability for errors or omissions. All articles published herein are without responsibility on the part of the publishers, in the occasion of loss or damage to any person acting or refraining from action as a result of any views published in Tee Times Golf Publications. COPYRIGHT: All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or recorded by any means whatsoever without prior permission in writing from the publishers. © PGL Services Limited 2006.

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Royal St George’s ends 128-year ban on lady members

Women welcome, says James Bond’s golf club LADIES’ man James Bond, who never failed to get the girl in a string of books and movies, would doubtless approve. .

SOME big names have lined to support Darren Clarke’s 2016 Ryder Cup captaincy - in three different ways.

Royal St George’s, which is said to have inspired James Bond author Ian Fleming’s classic golfing match in the 1964 movie Goldfinger, has lifted its ban on female members for the first time in its 128-year history.

First, genuine words of praise from the man he beat to the job. Second, a word of caution from Clarke’s playing partner in previous Ryder heroics and Third, a reminder by a European stalwart of the meaning of the role - a complete contrast to the poisoned chalice that the captaincy seems to be in the United States.

The Sandwich, Kent, club which has hosted The Open 11 times, had been one of three courses on the rota with a men-only membership policy. A decisive ninety per cent of members voted in favour of the rule change, allowing women to join with immediate effect, and the club said it looked forward to welcoming ladies as junior and full members.

The words of praise came from Spain’s Miguel Angel Jimenez. Clarke, 46, was chosen by a five-man selection panel ahead of Jimenez and Thomas Bjorn of Denmark.

Dismantling Dame Laura Davies, one of Britain’s most successful golfers, said it was ‘great to see’ the club following in the footsteps of the Royal and Ancient Golf in dismantling the old barriers against lady members. She said: ‘It would seem to be the correct thing for a club that hosts a big sporting event such as The Open. It’s such a great course that it deserves to hold prestigious golf events and I’m sure that this will ensure its long future in doing so.’ Professional Mel Reid, who has played in the Solheim Cup, also welcomed the decision: ‘Women golfers certainly want to be equal to the guys and this is another step towards that. Anything like this would always benefit the women’s game.’ And Kent’s Jason Barnes, from Chart Hills, said: ‘Obviously, it is the right decision. Golf needs to be brought up to date. I wish them the best of luck with it.’ Two remaining Open venues in Scotland have male-only membership policies: Muirfield in East Lothian and Royal Troon in South Ayrshire, which has separate men’s and women’s clubs. At the end of January, Royal Troon announced that it would ‘shortly undertake a comprehensive review to consider the most appropriate membership policy for the future’.

Although feeling ‘a little disappointed‘, Jimenez has said he is available to assist Clarke at Hazeltine next year.

Golf Finger: Gert Frobe as villain Goldfinger and Sean Connery as James Bond in the 1964 movie

Do you expect me to talk, Goldfinger? No, Mr Bond. . .I expect you to putt ROYAL St George’s has a unique connection with the storyline of James Bond’s high-stakes golf round against Goldfinger in Ian Fleming’s book and the 1964 film. Fleming was for years a member of Royal St George’s and was captainelect when he lunched at the club the day before he died of a heart attack aged 56 in the same year. Golf was a great passion for the creator of 007. His wife Ann complained that he spent too much time at the club, both on the course and at the 19th hole, where his own favourite tipple was pink gin (not shaken or stirred).

DAWSON DEFENDS OPEN TV SWITCH PETER Dawson, chief executive of the governing R&A, defended the decision to remove The Open from live free-toair TV and switch to Sky in 2017. Golf fans had inundated the sport’s governing body with angry responses in the wake of the decision, but Mr Dawson says the move is good for the Championship and the future of the game.‘I can’t deny that we’ve had quite a full postbag from

Support for Ryder captain Clarke

individuals out there who are disappointed by the decision,’ he said. ‘Some of them have used quite intemperate language as well, if I may say so. But we’ve had to look at this very carefully this time around. We’ve been with the BBC for over 60 years and they’ve been part of the Championship’s evolution and growth.’ He pointed to live radio coverage remaining on BBC Radio 5 live and prime-time highlights on BBC television every night of The Open.

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In the book, Fleming gives a highly detailed account of Bond’s game against Goldfinger. They play for $10,000, with Bond winning on a ‘strict rules of golf’ technicality despite Goldfinger’s cheating. The film produced the classic exchange as Goldfinger has Bond tied down and is threatening to slice 007 in two with a giant circular saw: Bond: Do you expect me to talk? Auric Goldfinger: No, Mr. Bond, I expect you to die! The film was actually shot at Stoke Park golf course in Buckinghamshire, conveniently close to Pinewood Studios for Sean Connery and the production team. But Fleming‘s description of the round is pure Royal St George’s. In the book, the golf professional is named Alfred Blacking - and at the time Fleming was writing his classic, the Royal St George professional was Albert Whiting. Early in the Bond-Goldfinger round, the narrator observes: ‘The difference between a good golf shot and a bad one is the same difference between a beautiful and a plain woman - a matter of millimetres.’

‘He deserves to be the Ryder Cup captain as much as I do. I would love to do it one day but I am happy for Darren because he has done a lot for the Tour as well.’ The word of caution came from Lee Westwood who believes Clarke, his old Ryder playing partner, will have a harder job than any previous European captain.

Hurting ‘The Americans are really hurting after what happened at Gleneagles,’ he said. ‘They didn’t come out of that one looking very good at all. ‘So I think Darren has got a heck of a tough job on his hands. Having said that, he’s well capable of pulling it off. I can’t remember a time when I didn’t think he would be a captain.’ And the reminder came from Ian Poulter, whose fist-pumping, wide-eyed exploits have become part of recent European Ryder folklore. Poulter said that while being Europe’s captain is a coveted role, its U.S. counterpart is considered to be less prestigious. Poulter told BBC Radio 5 live: ‘It’s not a role that many people want to put their hands up for. They haven’t had a lot of success over the last decade or so and that’s a difficult role. It was very difficult for Davis at Medina. He basically had nearly 10 fingers holding that trophy on the Saturday and thankfully for team Europe we managed to pull it out his hands. That must be very painful for him.’


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Michael Rees

CLASSIC IN CORNWALL Having decided that the West Country was the best solution for an early Spring golfing break the choice of location was the next step. In the end we selected an old faithful; a venue which we knew would tick all the boxes, a good golf course, and a first class hotel with all the facilities and with excellent food and wine. Our choice was The Carlyon Bay Hotel, near St Austell in Cornwall. The only county which has a language of its own, Kernow, and a county which attracts visitors all the year round. The Carlyon Bay Hotel is one of the eleven three and four star hotels in the Brend Hotel portfolio; family owned and operated, all located in the South West of England. Two of the hotels have golf courses conveniently at hand, at Saunton Sands, the luxury art deco hotel; there is Saunton Golf Club, with two absolutely wonderful links courses, the East and the West, nestling in the dunes, and the other at Carlyon Bay. Carlyon Bay Hotel is Cornwall’s finest, set in 250 acres of clifftop overlooking St Austell Bay. The eighteen hole championship golf course is free to all residents, which is a very special benefit. A very short stroll from the hotel entrance to the clubhouse. There is also a very sporty nine par thee course at the rear of the hotel, which is ideal for sharpening the short game, or for when time is short on departure or arrival day. In addition it has a snooker room, for that after dinner challenge, indoor and outdoor swimming pools, a therapy pool, sauna and fitness suite, all designed to meet the needs of the discerning visitor. Much has changed in the latter part of the 20th century, the china clay industry has shrunk, though many of the huge spoil mounds still exist, they are grassed over and no longer look an eyesore. The Eden Project

has revitalised one of the quarry areas and is now a great tourist attraction. Yet if much has altered, some things remain unchanged, and the short drive to Charlestown will provide a perfect example. It still boasts the harbour masters hut, and in the dock are rigged ships to stir the memories of the days of sail. A little further down the coast is the archetypal fishing village at Mevagissey, the narrow streets and cottages as they were when first built. Close by are the Lost Gardens of Heligan, created by the Tremayne family over centuries, they were left derelict and abandoned for more than seventy years after the First World War, in which all the gardeners who had volunteered failed to return. Miraculously they were rediscovered by Tim Smit and John Willis, a Tremayne descendant and have over the last twenty or so years been lovingly restored to their former glory. They are now a magnet for any

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nature or garden lover, and have been recognised with numerous awards, one location that is definitely worth the visit. If there is much to see in the area, there is a great golf course to enjoy on the doorstep. Carlyon Bay Golf Club is owned by the hotel, it is a spectacular course on which the first nine holes follow the cliff, and provide panoramic views over the bay, holes which are testing especially the 9th and 10th holes. The ninth is protected by out of bounds, has a steeply sloping fairway and a deep quarry on the approach to a plateau green, a combination to daunt the best. The par five 10th simply needs a good tee shot, for the fairway slopes downhill, but anything less and old man par will be out of sight. The finishing holes are across the railway, the main line to London, a good mixture of short and lengthy holes then to reach the final tee

you use the road and pass under the railway arch to the par three finish. If you are a golfer who appreciates variety, there are very fine alternatives; a short drive will take you to Porthpean Golf Club, with a course which is a combination of parkland and holes with spectacular views of St Austell Bay. St Austell is the other course in close proximity, another challenging parkland course which is very well maintained, and where a welcome is guaranteed for all visitors. Cornwall is one destination that never fails to satisfy the visitor, whatever the interest, there is something or somewhere to fill the need, no matter how many times you return. A personal favourite that we will never tire of. For more information visit: www.carlyonbay.com


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Alresford Golf Club ‘enjoyable golf & a great deal more’

SOUTHWICK PARK GOLF CLUB OUTSTANDING MEMBERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE! NO JOINING FEE & ONE FREE MONTH WHEN YOU JOIN We now offer intermediate membership categories (18-29yrs) Adult members enjoy one free junior membership when they join. There are other free benefits including the chance to play at other reciprocal golf clubs in the area such as New Forest, Wellow, Bognor Regis and Came Down golf clubs. Come and view our facilities and learn more about our fabulous offers we have available!


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• Highly regarded and well presented free draining course • Members discount for bar and catering purchases • No booking system for tee times necessary • Superb practice facilities • Regular competitions and ‘roll up’s’ • Reciprocal golf at 6 other private members clubs Cheriton Road, Tichborne Down, Alresford, Hampshire SO24 0PN Tel : 01962 733746 Email:secretary@alresfordgolf.co.uk

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Beverly’s BIG Secrets

Hampshire Ladies Golf


– Beverly Huke Very recently none other than David Leadbetter said that the biggest mistake that club golfers make is to hold the club too much up the middle of their “top” palm (left hand for right handers and right hand for you lefties). o, fully justified, here I go again on my favourite hobby horse!


Please see the picture opposit and make sure that your club grip sits BELOW the heel of your top hand not over it! Then make sure your club grip runs to just below the joint of your index finger PERFECT! County Captain, Mags Clark and Kerry Smith with PGA Achievement Award

Let’s get to grips with your golf this spring!

The Professional Golfers' Association honoured the HLCGA Team with their prestigious Achievement Award for 2014 at the Hants PGA Annual Dinner at Rowlands Castle Golf Club.

Call me on 07973 307880 or email info@beverlyhukegolf.com


Thanks a million, PGA Members, for your very treasured acknowledgement of our team's achievements in 2014. The members of our team, whose golf

and commitment were outstanding at both County Match Week and the National Finals, were Emma Allen (Meon Valley), Charlotte Barrow (Brokenhurst Manor), Sarah Bradshaw (Stoneham), Georgie Mundy (Corhampton), Aimee Ponte (Royal Guernsey), Chris Quinn (Hockley), Annabel Silk (Corhampton), Kerry Smith (Waterlooville) and Kelly Travers (Alresford).

A quick note for anyone thinking of going to St Andrews to spectate at The Open 2015 in Mid July. I am attending with a group but because of a few dropouts I have been left with a few hotel rooms which are non-refundable. The rooms are convenient for the tournament at St Andrews and are very near to Dundee station. The rooms are family or double rooms for 4, 5 or 8 day stays and I am happy to price reasonably if that helps anyone looking for accommodation.

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m 01329 834360 Email: peter.teetimes@gmail.co ISSUE 124 SEPTEMBER 2011 Tel:

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MAY 2011

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Above; Kerry Smith eying up her birdie putt on the 11th hole. Below; Kerry smith, (Waterlooville GC) winter scratch champion

WINTER SCRATCH FINAL The first major county event of 2015 started with a fabulous and exciting Winter Scratch Final held by kind permission of the members at Alresford Golf Club on Friday 13 March. The final was a rematch of the County Championship final of 2014 between Kerry Smith and Georgie Mundy, two of our leading county players. The cold March weather did not stop the spectators coming out and seeing Kerry race to a 4 hole lead in the early part of the match. Our County Champion, Georgie Mundy steadily eroded this deficit by turning at the ninth to only 2 down. By the 12th hole Georgie had the bit between her teeth and managed to get back to 1 down by the 15th. Kerry was steadfast and took advantage of her opponent’s loose drive on

the 17th and was able to close out the match for a 2&1 win to take the Winter Scratch Championship for the 4th year in a row. An entertaining match that included 5 birdies by both players. 2015 HLCGA EVENTS Now that Spring is finally on its way, now is the time for all women and girls of all abilities who are members of golf clubs to enter some of Hampshire Ladies events. Have a look at our website and see what we have to offer. They are great fun, with an opportunity to play on some of Hampshire’s finest courses and meet likeminded friends. www.hampshireladiesgolf.co.uk

Great Golf in the New Forest, Online Tee Bookings www.brokenhurst-manor.org.uk Weekend Societies

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WALK TALL, YOUNG LADY Coaching tip helps teen star Lydia become the new force in ladies’ golf

ONE of the hot topics in golf at the moment is pace of play, says the R&A.

NATURAL talent may take a good golfer a long way, but canny coaching helps project the player onto a higher plane.

The speed with which players get round a course is affected by factors including player ability and behaviour, management practices and course difficulty and set-up.

So it was with Lydia Ko. The 17-year-old New Zealander has burst through to become the youngest number one ever in world golf - and just keeps winning tournaments for fun. A telling tip from coach David Leadbetter helped maintain her current run of sublime form during which she won both the Australian and New Zealand titles. Leadbetter’s advice was: Be taller, cooler and smarter. Particularly taller. Lydia said after her most recent victory: ‘We’ve been working on my swing and “be tall” is the part in my swing where I shouldn’t dip my head.

I would say my height is five foot three, and he said Lydia, you’ve been looking four feet eleven. He told me to keep my height and I was like, OK, I’m getting taller. ‘Be cool was because we discussed that it was going to be hot and also be cool in

Lydia Ko: Striding ahead

the head too, be smart, play safe when you need to and then be aggressive. And play smart was really the biggest thing he told me.’ It was only three short years ago that Ko made world headlines by becoming the youngest ever winner of a professional tournament at the 2012 Women’s New South Wales Open.

Ko was described by one observer recently as having ‘the hands of a golfing surgeon and the mind of canny veteran’. She’s bringing those skills, and Leadbetter’s advice, into play every time she steps on to a golf course. And at the moment, it is not hard to see her continuing to keep getting cooler and smarter - and very much taller.

. . .but Park’s not bowing to the new kid on the block FIVE-time Major winner Inbee Park spelled out a defiant message to Lydia Ko as she beat her into second place in the Women’s Championship. The South Korean beat the 17-year-old by two strokes and signalled that she is still the woman to beat.

Inbee Park on her way to beating Lydia Ko to the Women’s Champions title

Park’s two-under-par 70 saw her finished on 15-under, two strokes ahead of Ko and American Stacy Lewis.

BRONTE STORMING ON U.S. COLLEGE CIRCUIT ENGLISH women’s champion Bronte Law won her third title on the U.S. women’s college circuit, beating fellow international Hayley Davis (Ferndown) by two shots. Both players finished below par as they set up the England one-two at the Northrup Grumman Regional Challenge at Palos Verdes in California. Bronte, a 19-year-old Curtis Cup player is a second year student at the University of California, Los Angeles. It was her second U.S. win this season and her third overall. Hayley, 22, is the English stroke play champion and a student at Baylor

Bronte Law: England one-two in California. Picture: Leaderboard Photography

University, Texas, and has won twice on the U.S. college circuit. Both players are members of the England Golf .

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The R&A seeks views on pace of play

Park was consistent throughout in Singapore, and the 26-year-old carded four bogey-free rounds in the event. But she was not triumphalist, simply saying: ‘This is a good sign for the season and hopefully many more to come.’ For golf fans the prospect was clear: Let the games begin.

Wales to decide on Solheim bid THREE home nations could be among the countries who will bid to host the 2019 Solheim Cup. Welsh golf officials were due to meet to decide whether to join England, Scotland, Denmark, Holland, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden and Turkey, who have expressed an interest in hosting. Wales previously hosted the matches won on the past two occasions by Europe - in 1996 at St Pierre near Chepstow, and Welsh golf is keen to continue building on the legacy of hosting the 2010 Ryder Cup. Celtic Manor Resort near Newport, which hosted the Ryder Cup five years ago, would be the likely venue.

‘Many commentators argue that golf nowadays takes too long, that slow round times are driving people away from the game and that something needs to be done,’ says the sport’s ruling body. ‘Conversely, others would say that golf is not a race, that not everyone wants to play in a hurry and that some courses are just not capable of being played in under four hours.’ The R&A is seeking the views of golfers around the world on the issue and has compiled a survey with this in mind.

‘Are you happy with how long it takes you to play golf?’ it asks. ‘If golf took less time to play would you enjoy it more, would you play more golf? What are the causes of slow play? What can be done to improve pace of play?’ Results of the survey will be pulled together and published in a report. For details, visit the R&A website.

England win Nations Cup AN England team of champions held off a charging Spanish side to score their sixth victory in the European Nations Cup at La Reserva, Sotogrande. The four-strong team of Ashley Chesters, Paul Howard, Nick Marsh and Ben Stow edged home one shot clear of the hosts, Spain. England coach Graham Walker commented: ‘With a few holes to play the tournament was tight. We needed a big finish and the team responded in great fashion. Ashley Chesters, the double European amateur champion, birdied the 15th and then parred in. Ben Stow, the Brabazon champion, eagled 15, birdied 16 and then parred in.’ Meanwhile, Howard, who was first to finish, had gone straight back on to the course to caddy for Marsh over the last few holes, underlining the side’s strong team spirit. Marsh is the English amateur champion and Howard has just added the New South Wales amateur championship to the 2014 South American amateur title.


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12TH MARCH 2016 OPEN TO 5 H/C & UNDER (at the time of confirmation)

20TH FEBRUARY 2016 OPEN TO 9 H/C & UNDER (at the time of confirmation)

GLORIA GOLF RESORT 5* HOTEL BELEK TURKEY • 7 NIGHTS ULTRA ALL INCLUSIVE • 5 ROUNDS GLORIA OLD & NEW • 2 practice rounds / one on each course • 54 hole stroke play tournament • £500.00** prize to the winner / prize table to 6 places ONLY • Presentation dinner included • FREE range balls each golf day PLUS • Airport transfers included FLIGHTS


GLORIA GOLF RESORT 5* HOTEL BELEK TURKEY • 7 NIGHTS ULTRA ALL INCLUSIVE • 5 ROUNDS GLORIA OLD & NEW • 2 practice rounds / one on each course • 54 hole stroke play tournament • £500.00** prize to the winner / prize table to 6 places ONLY • Presentation dinner included • FREE range balls each golf day PLUS • Airport transfers included FLIGHTS


** subject to rules of amateur status. Plus flights / limited availability

Tel: 0044 (0)115 9681007


Open 9am - 7pm 6 days Email: sungolfinfo@btinternet.com www.sungolfbelek.co.uk


The 6th year of the Sungolf Belek Golf Competition week was held at the beginning of March at the Gloria 5* Golf Resort Hotel, Belek Turkey.

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ion tit pe m Co lf Go

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Once again the weather was fantastic with 23 degrees of sunshine most days which enhanced the the perfect golf set up on the courses. Under the organisation of Graham Fidler and his team from Sungolf Belek and Golf & Wellness Turkey, what started with 38 players has grown to 116 players over the years showing how successful this competition week has become. Although classed as a fun week with friendly competitions, three of which were team games, golfers from clubs across the UK gather to the first class 5* Gloria Golf Resort Hotel to compete in singles and team competitions on the Gloria Old and Gloria New golf courses, including daily nearest the pin competitions for both men and women.

Team Winners left to right, Ron and Ann Macdonald, and Lynn and Jon Turner from Reading

Jon and Lynn Turner and Ron and Ann MacDonald from Reading won one of the team competitions, and Jon Turner was beaten on countback for 3rd place in the men’s singles competition. All four players are members at Donnington Grove Country

Club in Newbury, Berkshire. Donnington Grove Ladies Captain Ann said “being members of a great championship course in Newbury held the team in good stead to overcome the challenges of the superb Gloria Courses”.

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At the end of the week a presentation dinner was held to award the winners of a very enjoyable and friendly golfing holiday which is highly recommended by everyone who attended. Next years competition weeks are already in place and if you are looking to

book, better make it fast as places go very quick. Details can be found over leaf on page 13 or you can speak to Graham at Sungolf on 0044 (0)115 9681007 or email him sungolfinfo@btinternet.com Lynn Turner


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What a great week! Once again the Sungolf Belek Competition Week at the Gloria Golf Resort 5* hotel proved to be an outstanding success. Over 160 travelled to Belek on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey with 116 golfers taking part in the competitions. The combination of a really great hotel and two superb golf courses guaranteed the week would be outstandingly successful. Golfers from all over the UK travelled to participate in the 5th annual competition week, flying in from Scotland, Devon and Cornwall, Wales, the South of England and the Midlands, all coming together for a week of competitive but friendly golf. The quality of the hotel was 5* plus, the ultra all-inclusive concept, the food and quality of service was exceptionally good with some commenting it was even better than last year. The three a la carte restaurants all provided extra variety, a visit to all three being included in the cost of the competition week. The weather was again very kind with the temperature consistently reaching 23 degrees with unbroken sunshine on most days. In the evenings various types of entertainment was provided with a variety of live music, a quiz night and an indoor putting contest. A free excursion to Antalya Harbour or Side was also included making a welcome break from 5 days of golf. The week ended with a Champagne reception followed by a superb presentation dinner in one of the hotels a la carte restaurants, the Filet Steak was absolutely delicious and a great time was had by all. The two main competition winners, Charlie McLaughlin and Mina Kotecha both WON a return trip to next year’s Competition Week FREE of charge. Next years competition weeks are selling exceptionally well with one of the weeks close to being fully sold out with 90 golfers already confirmed. If you would like to take part in one of the Sungolf competition weeks in 2016 please see the advert on the facing page or check the Sungolf website.

Tel: 0044 (0)115 9681007


Open 9am - 7pm 6 days Email: sungolfinfo@btinternet.com www.sungolfbelek.co.uk

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Year!! Now in its 6th 26th & 27th February 2016

Two arrival dates 19th & 20th or s Sunday) (Golf Commence

**5 rounds of golf if booked before August 2015 7 nights Ultra All-Inclusive FREE use of a la carte restaurants included FREE room upgrade included 5** rounds of golf Gloria Golf courses 5 competition days with superb prize table to include 2 free places for 2017 Prime Tee Times each day 08.30 – 12.00 Airport & golf transfers included Prize Presentation Dinner included FREE golf Tuition from PGA qualified instructor

Men & Ladie s WINNERS return FREE in 2017

£599pp All-inclusive Sharing twin room. Single room option only £120 extra Add an Extra night stay at Gloria Golf Resort Hotel only £85pp when sharing Flights are not included but can be arranged on your behalf FREE excursion to Antalya Harbour or Side Harbour

MARCH 2016 COMPETITION WEEKS Sungolf staff in attendance to organise all competitions **Early booking incentive if booked by August 2015 1 extra round FREE on Gloria Golf – making 5 rounds in total (normally just 4 rounds included) Group terms and conditions apply full details @ www.sungolfbelek.co.uk


£729.00 pp sharing

Tel: 0044 (0)115 9681007


Open 9am - 7pm 6 days Email: sungolfinfo@btinternet.com www.sungolfbelek.co.uk

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in the World of Ladies Golf JUNIOR GOLF FOUNDATION

Your Monthly Blog by

Claire Kane

TOP TIPS I’ve been given lots of advice and tips from golf Professionals over the years to encourage and support my game. In hindsight, some advice hasn’t proved as beneficial as it first appeared. For instance; When I first started playing, I was advised to buy a set of fairway woods to gain more distance. What nobody mentioned was that, whilst I would be able hit the ball an extra 20+ yards, it usually ended up in the wrong direction. Someone once suggested I buy a new putter to help me on the greens. Unfortunately I failed to upgrade to the right model, one able to take into account both the correct angle as well as the pace. I was convinced using an electric trolley would take shots off my game because I wouldn’t be so tired but I ended up walking extra yards on most holes because I couldn’t take as many short cuts as carrying. What’s more, I needed to start weight training exercises to be able to lift the heavy frame and battery into the boot of my car without doing my back in. Buying the right ball to suit my swing was once highly recommended, as opposed to purchasing any old ball which happened to be on special offer. Consequently, I now consistently lose more expensive balls.

Investing in a Distance Measuring Machine was recommended so I would hit the greens and reduce my handicap. Unfortunately my gadget doesn’t seem to take into account gusts of wind or my ability to consistently strike the ball well. Years ago it was pointed out that even top Tour Professionals still have regular lessons, so if I wanted to improve my game I should book regular sessions too. I should have realised at that point that if the Pros were still having lessons then what hope did I have! One of the most memorable pieces of advice I was given was during a club match, a semi-final in a local competition. The skies opened so everyone waited patiently under cover for a gap in the clouds as we watched the 18th green became more of a water park than a putting surface. Unclear about the rules of putting on a wet surface, someone bravely asked the Club Professional what the rule was when the cup was surrounded by water. His hot tip was “don’t play”! © Claire Kane Follow my tales on twitter @golfsnippets

FOLLOWING on from their successful Junior Golf Academy, set up five years ago to bring in and teach youngsters the game of golf, Calcot Park Golf Club in Reading has now launched a Junior Golf Foundation with an aim of further developing the skills of junior golfers, who show good ability, to the highest standards possible, even to professional level. The Foundation will also help young golfers aged 10 to 19 develop valuable life skills and become well-rounded individuals through the game of golf. The Golf Foundation has been launched by the new President of Calcot Park Golf Club, John Meikle who, with his wife, Gwyneth, were the Junior Organisers at Calcot Park for the past six years. Calcot’s Head PGA Golf Professional, Gareth Johnston, will be responsible for all of the coaching. The newly appointed Junior Organisers, Andy Hearn and Graeme Russell, along with the Junior Section Director, David Wyeth, will also be contributing to developing the skills of young golfers. Gareth is one of Today's Golfer Magazine’s Elite Teaching Professionals and has stated that all students of the Foundation will become equipped with a complete understanding of all aspects of their game. They will also gain an enhanced skills-set that will allow each player to substantially reduce their handicap and improve the quality and enjoyment of their golf game. Gareth believes in evidence based coaching and utilises High Speed/Slow Motion cameras, GASP Coaching software and the state of the art GC2 Launch Monitor equipped with the market leading HMT (Head Measurement Technology) within his Coaching Studio. The Golf Foundation is not necessarily looking for the best junior golfers, but rather

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individuals who will benefit from the support, coupled with their own determination and dedication to succeed. During the period of tuition, foundation students will enjoy free golf membership at Calcot Park, as well as undertaking a tailored coaching programme specifically designed to improve all aspects of their golf game. In addition, the student will also get free membership of Calcot Park’s vibrant Junior Section with the opportunity of unrestricted golf (handicap dependant), as well as the ability to enter all Junior competitions and to represent Calcot Park’s Junior Golf Team in both internal matches and within the Thames Valley Junior Golf League. Details of this exciting opportunity may be had by contacting the Professional Shop at Calcot Park on 0118 942 7797 or emailing golf.foundation@calcotpark.com or call John Meikle directly on 07799 886246. www.calcotpark.com/golffoundation


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AGMS Graduation Day (Photo: Jamie Jones)

CMM CREATES NEW CAREER PATHWAY FOR GOLF GRADUATES SUNNINGHILL, BERKSHIRE, UK – Talented candidates who successfully graduate from UK universities and colleges now have an exciting new pathway to a career in the global golf industry.

their ideal first placement within many different sectors. This will include golf management & operations; sales, digital marketing; turfcare; hospitality & events; manufacturing; coaching and retail.

“If you will soon be graduating or have recently graduated, the CMM Graduate Programme aims to support your journey into the golf industry, giving you a variety of career opportunities and advice.”

The new Graduate Programme from Colt Mackenzie McNair (CMM), the leading executive recruitment specialist working in the golf markets of Europe, Middle East and Asia, is the first of its kind in the UK and provides a bespoke service for the brightest new talent.

Potential employers can use the CMM Graduate Programme to access the best talent for their graduate positions, internships, student placements and work experience staff, and will also have the ability to access the alumni talent pool who already have industry experience.

“Our new professional graduate programme will enable us to increase the amount of highly-qualified individuals entering the UK golf industry each year” said Richard Wood, Director of Colt Mackenzie McNair. “Early responses from the industry have been overwhelmingly positive, and we expect it to become a key part of the recruitment process for many UK employers”.

“The last decade has seen a significant increase in the number of graduates studying specialist degree courses in the golf, sports and hospitality industries” said Adam Keable, Programme Director at Colt Mackenzie McNair. “However, this is something upon which the golf industry has been slow to act, and some of the brightest talents have been lost to other industries.

Many of the industry’s leading companies and trade associations have already given the CMM Graduate Programme their support, including Topgolf, The British and International Golf Greenkeepers Association (BIGGA), the Golf Club Managers’ Association (GCMA), the Club Managers Association of Europe (CMAE), England Golf, Trump International, Burhill Group Limited (BGL), Crown Golf and Your Golf Travel.

CMM’s specialist consultants have built relationships with all of the recognised educational establishments which offer specialist degree courses designed to prepare graduates for a career in the golf industry.

“CMM's objective is simple: we want to establish the golf industry as a career destination of choice for high-calibre graduates. So if you are an employer seeking to bring new talent into your organisation, our Graduate Programme represents a wonderful opportunity for you to access a pool of bright young people who could transform your business.

The initiative, which is free for both graduates and employers, offers the industry’s future stars an opportunity to find

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“Any programme that can offer graduates guidance and a platform from which to take the correct steps during the start of their career is obviously of significant value” said Colin Mayes, Chief Executive Officer, Burhill Group Ltd (BGL). “As a major employer in the golf industry, having access to such a pool of highcalibre graduate candidates is hugely beneficial, and should improve our recruitment process”. Dr Andrew Callaway from Bournemouth university said “Whether you need graduates, placements or work experience,

CMM's Graduate Programme allows you to access to top candidates in Golf and related industries. It is a clear opportunity which will offer a competitive edge to any business”. CMM has partnered with core universities and colleges across the UK such as the University of Birmingham, Bournemouth University, Myerscough College (Preston), the University of the Highlands & Islands, Bucks New University and Merrist Wood College – all of which offer golf-related degree courses. The CMM Graduate Programme also looks to attract skilled individuals from wider university courses ensuring that a rich and diverse talent pool is accessible to employers.

“Arguably, each year the UK produces the richest crop of talented golf graduates to be found anywhere in Europe” said Richard Wood. “ Our new Graduate Programme is a boost not only for graduates, but also for employers seeking to recruit the very best”. To find out more, contact Adam Keable at Colt Mackenzie McNair or see further details at http://www.coltmm.com/graduateprogramme/.


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p l r n hi ia fe joi rs ec of n be sp ry ca 3* m a cto rs of y me As du mbe rice da 5 tro e p r in w m the full o ne or to



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NEW Spike Bar – NEW Bunker investment – NEW Clubhouse refurbishment – Weʼd love to be Your NEW Club for 2015.

2015 MEMBERSHIP RATES The club with a focus on members and providing a quality course, clubhouse and all round enjoyable golf experience. NEW individual membership categories have been added for 2015, please take a look below. Membership Price (inc VAT & Category Association Fees) FULL £1348.06 MIDWEEK £961.23 COUNTRY (12 ROUNDS) £371.85 31 – 35 £1145.85 27 – 30 £876.24 INTERMEDIATE (23 – 26) £606.63 COLT (18-22) £404.42 JUNIOR (10 – 17) £161.76 CADET (5 – 9) £65.00

Caversham Heath Golf Club, Chazey Heath, Mapledurham, Reading RG4 7UT Tel: 0118 947 8600 Fax: 0118 947 8700 Email: info@cavershamgolf.co.uk www. cavershamgolf.co.uk

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Who's cloning whom? Many times I am asked the question “what clubs do I make “. Upon hearing the answer Wishon, Snake Eyes and Orka, I am often met with the reply “are they as good as ‘proper clubs’ ”, or that it is just a copy of a “Pingaway”! Well nobody's perfect! In the past I have explained the quality of component clubs but after a recent search of Tom Wishon’s website I thought the following information was very enlightening and information most golfers really need to be aware of. From what I discovered at Tom Wishon's www.wishongolf.com web site, we have a problem. It appears this opinion of these golfers is 180 degrees backwards. It appears that quite a number of the big golf companies may have been "knocking-off" some of Wishon's innovations in golf club design over the years. As a golf club designer since 1986, Tom Wishon has not only designed more different models of golf clubheads than any other person in the game, but among those more than 300 different clubhead designs are more than 50 which stand as 'golf club technology firsts' created and brought to market before the big golf companies brought out their version of the same design technology.

Wishon's 515GRT woods proved the experts were wrong. Interestingly, Adams Golf claimed they were the first in this category with the introduction of their 2011 Speedline fairway woods but subsequently have retracted that statement in their ads. Thank you very little. 4. First Driver Head Made from a Part Graphite, Part Metal construction 1995, Golfsmith Power Link Driver When Callaway offered their part graphite/part metal ERC Driver in 1998, everyone thought they were the innovator for creating a unique part graphite/part metal driver head. Who would have thought this design technology was done 3 years before? 5. First Adjustable Hosel Metal Woods 1996, Golfsmith AHT Metal Woods A technology that is all the rage right now on drivers from companies like Taylor Made, Cobra, and Titleist, does anyone really know they were 'only 14 years behind' in releasing this technology to allow golfers to change the lie and face angles of their driver?

A few of these are presented as a list below to give you a flavour of the innovation and technical excellence of component clubs. They're here:

6. First Metal Driver Larger Than 350cc - 1997, Golfsmith Long Jon Driver From 1993 through the end of the decade, the largest driver heads offered to golfers were made with a volume measurement below 300cc. Only when Callaway introduced the Great Big Bertha in 2000 did the big companies begin to crack a driver size barrier that few know had been breached by one of Tom Wishon's designs in 1997.

1. First Variable Thickness Face Driver - 1995, Golfsmith Ti 260 Driver Callaway followed with their own version of a variable thickness face on a driver models in 1997, since then several other companies have done the same. Today it seems more golf companies offer drivers with a variable thickness face than with a uniform thickness face. Who Copied Who?

7. First Cup Face Construction Woodhead - 1997, Golfsmith BlackHawk Driver A cup shaped face is now known as a good way to help increase distance from off centre hits with any driver or wood head. Callaway was the first of the large golf companies to do that on one of their drivers in 2000, while once again, they came in second in releasing this interesting driver face technology to golfers.

2. First Thin Face High COR Irons 2000, Snake Eyes Fire Forged Irons In 2004, Nike introduced their thin face Slingshot irons to follow Wishon's Snake Eyes design. Since then a few other large companies have brought out their versions as well. Who Copied Who?

8. First Draw Bias, Heel Weighted Metal Wood - 1995, Golfsmith AccuCore 50 Driver Putting more weight into the heel side of a metal driver has been touted as a means to reduce the tendency of a shot to fade or slice since the mainstream market first saw this technology on drivers in 2000. Who knew that it had already been done 5 years before?

3. First Thin Face High COR Fairway Woods - 2004, Wishon Golf 525GRT woods Prior to the introduction of Wishon's 525GRT woods, most experts in the golf industry believed it was impossible to create fairway woods with the same high COR as a driver.

late 1990s - a good while after Wishon did it. And not only that, he did it on a full set of irons as well and not simply on the wedges! 10. First Putters made with Interchangeable Faces for Changing Loft 2005, Wishon Golf CLF Series Putters Club repairmen have been asked to bend the hosel of putters as a means to change the loft of the face for a long time. Unfortunately when this is done, the putter no longer sits square to the target when allowed to rest on its sole on the green, so the golfer has to HOLD the face square to be able to putt accurately. No other company has yet figured out that it might be a better idea to have faces made with different loft angles to screw on to the putter body so the sole angle could remain intact. And those are just a handful of the more than 50 golf club design technology firsts that have come from the component custom clubmaking side of the golf equipment

industry. So to re-iterate – Who Copied Who? If you care to read about the others, take a moment to visit www.wishongolf.com and under the tab at the top 'Technology' look for TWGT Designs Firsts. And it would be nice if the next time you hear a golfer say that the component custom clubmakers offer nothing but knock-offs and clones, you could offer some of the facts. A copy of this and my previous articles for Doyle’s Dilemmas can be found online at http://www.servicetogolf.com/ doylesdilemmas.asp. Should you have any questions on this or any equipment matter please feel free to call me on 07859 920055 or 01256 322007. Alternatively, email me directly at dave@madetomeasuregolf.co.uk or visit my web site at www.madetomeasuregolf.co.uk. I'll be back.

9. First Milled Face Irons and Wedges 1992, Dynacraft CNC5000 Irons & Wedges Now pretty much seen in a variety of different companies' wedge models, no golf company introduced a milled face iron or wedge until the

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JB Corrie & Co Ltd Frenchmans Road Petersfield Hampshire GU32 3AP 01730 237100 info@jbcorrie.co.uk www.jbcorrie.co.uk JB Corrie & Co Ltd Signal Box Road Blairgowrie Scotland PH10 6ER 01250 873989 jbcscotland@jbcorrie.co.uk www.jbcorrie.co.uk

Corrie Fore Golf Fencing

Join 1st April and receive 15 months membership for the price of 12

Corrie Fore The Corrie Fore fencing system has been developed for golf clubs to protect their employees, members, guests and their vehicles. Comprising of hollow section posts braced with a top rail and clad with 25mm x 25mm golf ball netting. • Cost effective • Installed by our experienced fitters • Golf ball stop netting • Hollow Section posts • Visually appealing • Protect people and cars from stray golf balls

(Finance available) WATERLOOVILLE GOLF CLUB Cherry Tree Avenue, Cowplain Waterlooville, Hampshire, PO8 8AP.

Tel.No. 02392 263388 w w w. w a t e r l o o v i l l e g o l f cl u b . c o . u k

ALAN WALTERS MANAGEMENT THE SOUTH'S PREMIERE ENTERTAINMENT AGENCY 30 YEARS EXPERIENCE Dinner Dances-Presentation Evenings-Cabaret Shows Solo's-Duo's-Trio's-Group's-Disco's-Comedian's Children's Entertainer's-Compere's Take the stress out of your special evening, let us organize everything for you. Alan (a golfer himself) is in the office most days if not leave a message and your call will be returned. TEL: (023) 9261 0405 (24 Hours) MOB: 07957 832446 EMAIL: awmanagement@aol.com www.awentertainment.co.uk

GOLF TROLLEYS AND TROLLEY REPAIR PARTS Serving the golfer for over 15 years, renowned for high quality trolley repair parts, shipped same day UK and shipped worldwide. https://trolleys4golf.com Internet save site

More often alternative parts replacing the sub­standard original spec equipment sold with trolley or from the trolley suppliers on the rare occurrence they may keep spare parts! Quality assured.

G­TECH & Parts

All parts as in (obsolete) control modules for Motocaddy S1 & S3, modules Hillbilly all models Talisman, Oriel, Caddimatic Energy, Slazenger, Masters, Ultracaddy Powerbug Pro Master all 12volt Trolleys. Switches, potentiometers, looms, controllers, chassis parts, motors, gearboxes, most parts for most trolleys. Batteries, bags, leads for all trolleys, also Lithium batteries with 5 YEAR GUARANTEE*.

Motocaddy Trolleys Parts & Service

Wheels, axles, clutches for Hillman, Hillbilly, Powakaddy, Terrain, Energy, Slazenger, Caddiemaster , Topcart, Fraser and most trolleys. Bushes for Hillbilly wheels.


HILLBILLY tyres, wheel bushes, and complete rear wheel kits……

01494 868073 South Buckinghamshire

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RELIABLE AND DEPENDABLE USED CAR SALES With over 30 years’ experience in used car sales in Hampshire, the Sparshatts Group offers you the comfort of knowing that you are buying a quality used car from a reputable car dealer; Here for you now and here when you need us in the future. Our locations in Southampton, Hedge End and Havant put us within easy reach of our customers for both used car sales and used car servicing and, with over 600 used cars of all makes and models across the group, there really is something for everyone. Massive choice of cars in stock- We don’t believe in making claims to have hundreds of cars in stock which we haven’t got so you can rest assured you won’t be wasting your time if you come to see a car we are advertising for sale.We really do have more than 600 cars in stock at any one time so, if you dont see the one you want, please call us as we might have one being prepared for sale.

THE SPARSHATTS COMMITMENT DISCOUNTED Service & Repairs – Another great value for money offer when you buy a used car from us. With service centres in Fareham and Botley, we make car ownership easy and affordable.

New Park Garage Park Gate Tel: 01489 573448

PRE-SALE Quality Checks – All our used cars undergo checks before they are put on sale. Our relationship with a number of different New Car Franchises means that we have high standards that must be met before a used car can be sold. This removes a lot of concerns that people have when buying a used car.

PRE-SALE Security Checks – All our used cars undergo an HPI check before they are sold. This ensures that they haven’t been stolen, that there is no outstanding finance on them and that they have not been written off. All this gives our used car customers peace of mind at purchase and for the ownership of their vehicle.

FREE MOT for life – When you buy a used car from one of our sites in Hampshire, you can rest easy knowing that you now have FREE MOTs for as long as you own the vehicle. It’s just one small way that we can say thank you and you can take comfort knowing that you have a reputable and dependable dealer on your side.

Sparshatts of Havant Hulbert Road Bedhampton Havant Hampshire PO9 3TF

Sparshatts of Hedge End 10 / 16 Botley Road Hedge End Southampton Hampshire SO30 2HE

Sparshatts of Southampton 333 Millbrook Road West Southampton Hampshire SO15 0HW

Tel: 02392 492666

Tel: 01489 785633

Tel: 023 8077 1112


Tee Times Readers Offer* Bring this voucher to Sparshatts (either of the 3 sites) and receive £50 of Free Fuel when you purchase a used car. Voucher Valid until 30th April, 2015

* Offer available at Sparshatts of Havant, Hedge End and Southampton and the purchase of a used car must be from Sparshatts. Finance available Subject to Status, your PX as full deposit nothing to pay for 1 month! Please cut out and bring with you on day of purchase

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Quality Golf Breaks inWales ...


. . . read this months Special Wales Section

CROESO I CYMRU Welcome to Wales Royal Porthcawl

learned my first words of the Welsh language as a schoolboy, visiting my father’s family in Aberamman, a small mining village near to Aberdare in South Wales. They were “Dim problem” simply meaning no problem, for that seemed to apply to just about everything.


Playing golf was far from my mind in those days, sport was either rugby or football played in the street, with jackets or tin cans standing as goalposts. It was where I first became aware of “hwyl” the fervour associated and born of National pride. Today it would be impossible to imagine crossing the Severn Bridge without a surge of anticipation and with clubs in the boot. The Principality can boast some of the most wonderful golf courses in the world. In 2003 it was given the award as “Undiscovered Golf Destination of the Year” – a statement that is hard to contemplate today, for it is a nation that can boast three courses in the Top 100 in the World; Royal Porthcawl, Royal St Davids at Harlech and Aberdovey. All three genuine links courses right on the coast, and they are just the tips of the golfing pyramid. Always bear in mind that of the 30,000 golf courses in the world only around two hundred and fifty are true links courses, without doubt Wales has more than it’s share: more importantly each and every one is accessible to the visiting golfer.

TwentyTen Course Celtic Manor

The Ryder Cup which was held at Celtic Manor in September 2010, thanks to the endeavour and support of Sir Terry Matthews OBE certainly put Wales on the world golfing map. The Welsh influence has manifested itself many times since the War, in 1955 Dai Rees the pocket dynamo was the first Welshman to Captain a Ryder Cup side, two years later he would lead his side to victory at Lindrick in Yorkshire, a rare success. In 1977 Brian Huggett became the second Captain, then came Ian Woosnam, who after playing in eight consecutive Ryder Cup teams was made Captain for the 2010 match played on the Twenty Ten course at Celtic Manor, leading the team to another

superb victory. Jamie Donaldson became the latest hero – hitting that superb approach to finalise the victory over the USA at Gleneagles last year. The beauty about golf in Wales is how easy it is to plan trips – there is simply an abundance of courses set in pockets with short distances between, whether you choose the North Wales Coast, Mid Wales, or the areas along the South Coast. In the North you could select, Nefyn, Porthmadog, Royal St Davids and Conwy. In the South it could be Royal Porthcawl, Pyle & Kenfig, Ashburnam and Southerndown, and in Mid Wales Cradoc, Builth Wells, Llandridnod Wells and

Inaugural Celtic Manor Resort Junior Open The junior golf season got off to a flying start with the Inaugural Celtic Manor Resort Junior Open held on The Roman Road Course. Cottrell Park Golf Resort was the best represented club at the event with six juniors entering and were also the most successful,

winning prizes in all categories. Megan Cullinane was runner up in the girls competition, Daniel Thomas was third in the boys aged 15 and under category and rounding off an excellent day for the juniors from Cottrell Park, Jordan Taylor claimed nearest the pin in the over 15 boys competition.


left to right, Megan, Jordan & Daniel

Knighton. Those are only my initial thoughts, but I could list comparable substitutes for any of the courses named. For a final recommendation you could explore the James Braid Trail, ten courses which will expose you to some of the most wonderful scenery in the British Isles. This feature highlights some of the treasures, but wherever you go or play you will receive a warm welcome and sample golf of the highest quality, and I guarantee that you will wish to return, to experience more of the Celtic delights. Michael Rees

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Quality Golf Breaks inWales ... . . . read this months Special Wales Section


outh Wales is blessed with some of the finest golf courses in the United Kingdom, a fact becoming increasingly apparent to all the visitors coming to enjoy, not only the golf but also the many other interests and attractions available near at hand. The Vale is a four star resort, nestling just off junction 34 of the M4 motorway, and easily accessible from all points of the Midlands and the South of England, convenient thanks to the motorway network and the Severn Bridge, and made more widely known due to the publicity resulting from the successful Ryder Cup match in 2010.


Anyone who visited the region in the 1990’s would not recognise the superb Resort which has evolved from the little known Hensol Golf Club since it was acquired by the Leeke Family. The dream to develop a sporting resort of international repute has been fulfilled. Today the resort is a complex which provides just about every facility that the sports enthusiast could desire, a fact evident as soon as you pass through the gates and approach the hotel itself. The finishing holes of the Wales National course border the access road to the left, and on the right hand side are the superb forty acre training facilities which are home to Cardiff City Football Club and the Cardiff Blues Rugby Club, and if you are lucky in choosing the time of your visit you may well see the national Welsh rugby team preparing for their home international matches. Hensol Castle the former stately home has recently benefitted from a multi million pound investment programme to create a wonderful wedding and conference venue, and the next phase will see the creation of thirty bedrooms in the castle and a first class up market restaurant.

The luxuriously appointed hotel is at the heart of the resort, it has 143 rooms many of which have a private balcony and it houses the main restaurant and conference facilities and access to the other function rooms, Health Club and spa. Each and every facet laid out to the highest standards and many complimentary to the hotel guests. The restaurant dining is simply first class, and for those occasions when less formal dining is required the hotel provides an excellent 24 hour room service. The restaurant offers the very best in Welsh and International cuisine, with local fresh produce. In the clubhouse La Cucina restaurant provides alternative dining. The main attractions for the Resort are the two championship standard eighteen hole golf courses, The Wales National and the Lake Course. The Wales National is recognised as one of the notable inland courses, with mature woodland, fearsome bunkers and water hazards to test the approach shots to well defended greens. At 7433 yards it is one of the longest courses outside the USA, and has already hosted several European Challenge Tour and Senior Tour events, as well as Europro Tour fixtures. There are so many holes that will stay in the

memory banks, on the front nine, two tough par 5’s, the downhill second is a monster over six hundred yards long and protected by a lake, the 6th is a little charmer, a short par four over the lake, then the delightful cluster of holes number 7, 8 and 9 forming a natural corner. If you have a fear of narrow fairways, the 10th will strike terror into the heart, a long hole with water all down the left and a green tucked around the corner of the lake. The four holes really dominated by the water, are the 13th to the 16th, though it will probably be the bunkering, the exposed stones and the flowers that will also impress and create the image not to be forgotten. On a sunny day, a golfers dream. Four classic holes that would earn a place in any list of good holes, and it is no surprise that of those, the 14th is considered the signature island hole. Then it’s back across the lane to the final two holes, and the finish to the Grand National. A course to savour, and if the card is at all respectable, one to be proud of. The Lakes course was the original one on the site, a fine layout which has hosted numerous championships, as the name implies one that has an abundance of water,

in particular the twenty acre lake that makes the 12th the signature hole. Both the 9th and the 18th are defended by water, ensuring that concentration stays high to the very end of the round. Whichever course you elect to play, both the driving range and putting greens are right on hand to cater for the warming up before the final call into the very well equipped Pro shop for those last minute requirements. After the challenge of the golf, all your woes can be set aside with a visit to either the spa for a relaxing massage or swim or for the more energetic, a trip to the Health Club for a work out/warm down. Whether you are staying at the resort and enjoying all the onsite facilities or simply visiting for the day, you will be given a hearty welcome and treated to first class service during the time you spend there. Vale Resort, Hensol Park, Hensol, Vale of Glamorgan, CF72 8JY Tel: 01443 667800 www.vale-hotel.com Michael Rees

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Quality Golf Breaks inWales ... . . . read this months Special Wales Section



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CARDIFF GOLF CLUB THE PREMIER CLUB IN THE CAPITAL Cardiff Golf Club has long been recognised as the premier club in the capital, and one of finest in the country. It has a reputation for superb greens, manicured fairways and mature trees to enhance the structure of the individual holes, with a picturesque brook that meanders throughout the course, so that no two holes are the same, and each requires good course management to play them well. Just as a fine course should, it asks questions of the golfer, and rewards the thinker and the shot-maker. I have to confess that although I am a frequent visitor to South Wales, this was my first visit to the club, and I had two different emotions, first anticipation, and secondly reservation, for my experience has shown that with some elite clubs there is a conservatism that detracts from the enjoyment of the visit. However any concerns I had were dispelled the instant we arrived in the Professional shop to be greeted by Adam Constable and his assistant, a welcome, a smile and coffee within minutes, and in no time chatting about golf, golf courses et al just like old friends . The reception could hardly be bettered, the clubhouse is an impressive building, it was formally opened in March 1999 by the President of the Welsh Golfing Union Mr John Roger Jones, built at a cost of ÂŁ1.1 million, and designed to provide all the facilities and also to maximise the spectacular views over the golf course, which is an oasis of green midst the housing which surrounds it, though invisible from the course as you play. The

function rooms are on the first floor with a balcony overlooking the first hole which runs downhill to a green with a backdrop of trees, impressive and magnetic it tempts you out onto the first tee. As an ardent student of golf history, I am always intrigued by the diverse manner in which clubs have been established, and Cardiff Golf Club is unusual in that most new clubs were created with a small number of enthusiasts, who struggled to expand the membership. Cardiff was sparked by two men, Reuben Pugsley and Trevor Williams who were talking over drinks in the clubhouse at Leys Golf Club, on the coast between Barry and Llantwit Major. They had travelled by tram, train and pony and trap, and obviously considered that there must be a simpler way to play golf. They place an advertisement in the Western Mail to test interest, and some 500 people turned up, and the two young men were appointed Chairman and Secretary to form Cardiff Golf Club. The club was to be on farmland known as Ty-To-Maen in north Cardiff, land owned by Mr Ewan Davis JP, a Cardiff and Welsh international rugby player, who leased the land to the club on very generous. In 1948 he sold the land to the club at well below market price, he was indeed a true benefactor. In 1921 Robert Walker was appointed the first professional, and with a small subcommittee designed the first layout, which opened in 1922, with Reuben Pugsley as Captain. The subscriptions were three guineas for Ladies and four guineas for Gentlemen. Very progressive and unlike many other courses round the country who did not admit ladies until very much later.

In 1928 the club made sporting headlines with the visit of two of the worldâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s leading golfers, when the two local professionals, Robert Walker and Bill Smalldon, took on the mighty American Gene Sarazen, and Australian Joe Kirkwood in a challenge match. Sarazen would go on to be the first player to win all four majors, and put the Masters Tournament on the map with his spectacular win in 1935. Bill Smaldon who took over as professional in 1929 served the club marvellously until his death in 1973, forty years in the role, including the War years when he acted as Steward with the help of his wife. Bill won the Welsh Professional Championship at Royal Porthcawl in 1932, part of a long association with the Championship. When it was held at Cardiff Golf Club in 1988 it was won by Ian Woosnam. Woosie, at the height of his success had just won the European Championship at Wentworth and travelled straight to South Wales to honour his commitment to support the event. The club has hosted many of the national and county championships, and it no surprise that such a fine course should produce champions among them many Welsh Amateur Champions. Club member H C Squirrell was Welsh Amateur Champion on five occasions, with a liking for links courses he won three times in succession between 1958 and 1960 and again in 1964 and 1965, a marvellous record. The members obviously have pride in the history of their club, but the modern day golfer is far more materialistic, and looks for the positive benefits that membership provides today. So the task set for the committee and club management is to provide the best possible package to both retain and attract members to the club.

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B L CARDIFF GOLF CLUB The first port of call when visiting a golf club is usually the professional’s shop, and as I have already described the warm welcome we received set the tone for the visit. Head Pro Adam Constable came through the ranks, he was a junior member at the club, so is well known to the membership, his shop is very well set out and fully stocked and offers everything the golfer might need, all at hand. The banter also revealed that he is no mean golfer, holding the club record with a very impressive score of 62. The junior section is very strong, and once again the pros make their contribution, providing weekend coaching and also summer courses for the section, which can boast 140 members, a far cry from clubs who are struggling to attract younger players. The next port of call was the club lounge, and first evidence of the impact that recently appointed General Manager Gareth Morgan is having on the club. Gareth brings a wealth of experience in club management, most recently at neighbouring Radyr Golf Club. For an old club, it could be assumed that changes would be hard to achieve, but the members have been very receptive and fully committed to the suggestions put forward to take the club ahead. There has been a relaxation of the dress rules to allow jeans in the clubhouse, the spike bar has been jettisoned and the bar is reorganised so that there is no segregation and all the members enjoy a unified cosy atmosphere. Behind the scenes there has been a rapid change to the operating side of the administration fully utilising the latest technology, and in so doing making it easier for both members and visitors to have the advantage of modern communications and recording. Societies are welcome at any time, a concept that not so long ago would have been met with disbelief at most clubs, but which enables income to be generated without causing disruption for the members. The area which was previously used for the spike bar is being used to create practice and a teaching room, which is being equipped with a state of the art simulator,

with access via the Pro Shop. A great facility which has proven popular wherever it has been installed and will shortly be available for use. It will prove very useful during the winter time, when practice will be possible with the minimum discomfort. So to the course, and standing on the first tee is a real delight, a challenging hole that is said to favour those who know it, the first of many good tests. The course is not very long, 6090 yards from the medal tees, but what is lacks in length it makes up for with subtlety. There are four par fives, on the front nine, the 4th and the 8th, nominated as one of the signature holes, requiring tactical skill as well as good striking. The second nine starts with back to back fives, the latter defended by the brook crossing the fairway. If the fives are significant the par threes are the score makers, for there are six of them varying in length from just 130 yards to 185 yards, and each is different. Both the 9th and the 12th were mentioned as possible signature holes, which speaks volumes for the quality of the course. There are two shortish par fours,

which would give the very long hitters a chance to drive the greens, but beyond the gambit of mere mortals, and full of danger if attempted. All in all this is a truly marvellous test of golf and one fully deserving of the plaudits given to it. Head Green-keeper Dan Harden and his team deserve the credit for a superbly maintained course, and for the continued development which will keep the club settled in the position of principle club in the capital. The heart of any good clubhouse is the quality of the cuisine, and that demands a very good chef, and the club has been fortunate to have the return of Simon Morgan to the role. Simon was with the club several years ago and left to gain experience. He has done that with aplomb, after serving on board Cunard cruise ships he came back to Cardiff Banqueting, and was responsible for providing the cuisine for visiting Royalty and other dignitaries who came to the city. All of which he took in his stride, and he has now returned to Cardiff Golf Club, to the delight of the membership and a very happy reunion.

Cardiff Golf Club was both surprising and innovative, and would satisfy the needs of the most discerning golfer, whether for membership or for a visit or other function. General Manager Gareth Morgan and his team will be pleased to hear from enquirers and as they state in their literature “Don’t take our word for it, come and see for yourself.” I could not have put it more succinctly myself, and suffice to say I am looking forward to my next visit. Michael Rees

Contact Details: CARDIFF GOLF CLUB, Sherborne Avenue, Cyncoed, Cardiff, CF23 6SJ Email: office@cardiffgolfclub.co.uk Tel: 029 20 753320 www.cardiffgolfclub.co.uk www.facebook.com/CardiffGolfClub www.twitter.com/cardiffgolfclub

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COTTRELL PARK - A DELIGHTFUL DUO One of the real pleasures about returning to South Wales is to visit Cottrell Park, the welcome always makes the journey well worthwhile. Every time I come I am regaled with all the news about what is happening out on the courses, and there is rarely a time when something significant has not taken place. Cottrell Park has just completed a decade of serious investment in the resort, and despite the recent gloom about the numbers of people playing the game and the effects of the recession the development has continued, and will pay rich rewards for the long term future, for the benefit of both the owners and the members and visitors enjoying the resultant product. During the last ten years both courses have seen major projects completed, with new greens, lakes, bunker refurbishment, and the whole appearance has been strengthened. More recently a new green-keeping complex had been brought into use, with new machinery and every facet to enable the green staff to maintain the course at the highest level throughout the year. The modern clubhouse has been improved in several ways, a sports TV lounge, snooker and pool room, the bar and dining areas have been modernised, the new windows and doors looking out over the course have improved the views and make the rooms appear larger and lighter. Close to the driving range, there is a totally new simulator studio with state of the art equipment which has been very well used since it has been opened. The major visual change is the construction of the marquee, a fine facility which is adjacent to the clubhouse, it is available for wedding receptions and car shows, corporate and charity events, for the marquee can accommodate up to 360 clients. The income generated from this new stream will be added to the investment fund which facilitates the ongoing investment in the club. Although there is no accommodation onsite, golfing groups we have encouraged to visit the club advise that there is no shortage of accommodation conveniently close at hand, whether you prefer modern hotels or lean towards the more olde world village setting, there are plenty of options whatever your taste. The city of Cardiff is but a short drive or taxi trip away, a vibrant city that is a great place for a day visit or an evening of entertainment.

several subtle changes on both, but there has been a more noticeable alteration to the 4th green on the Button, where the changes will bring the water more into play. The tough winter has taught many lessons, the most important being the advantages of trolleys with winter wheels to minimise wear, and with a new jet wash system to hose them down, so that they can be packed away cleanly. As spring gets into full swing, the other indoor and outdoor activities will also be swinging into action. There is a very full list, with fishing, nature trailing as well as snooker and pool for the indoor pleasure seeker. The Team Building and Incentive day programme has proven to be very popular, with rafting, archery as well as the other sporting challenges. Indeed something for everyone. There has been a significant change with regard to junior golfers, and to assist in the future of golf, membership is free to all juniors up to the age of 18 years, a unique situation. The operational team is led by Derek Smith and Gaynor Openshaw-Smith , their positive attitude to supplying added value to members and visitors alike is apparent in all areas of the resort. Cottrell Park were proud to be runners up in the recent Golf Union of Wales, Welsh Golf Club of the Year Awards for 2014, and the target for 2015 is to win it. If you are looking for quality golf, with that little something extra, then Cottrell Park could just fill your requirements. The simple way is to ask the question and be surprised at the value for money you are offered and is then delivered. Michael Rees

A visit in spring is enhanced by the sight of emerging daffodils and snowdrops along the entrance road, always impressive and the flowers add to the ambience. Both courses, the Mackintosh and Button Gwinnett looked in fine fettle, despite a difficult winter, I am told that there are

For more information visit the website: www.cottrellpark.com Or by or email: sales@cottrellpark.com or telephone: 01446 781781

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Since The Ryder Cup in 2010, there has been a significant increase in the awareness of the quality of golf available in South Wales, from Newport in Monmouthshire along the M4 and beyond to the Pembrokeshire coast. This region is host to every type of course imaginable, from the great links to the manicured parkland. We were privileged to visit one of the best. Clyne Golf Club sits in an area of outstanding beauty, on high ground on a stretch of moorland called Clyne Common. The views all around are spectacular, from the immediate vista of Mumbles Bay, East to the Bristol Channel and inland to the Black Mountains and Brecon Beacons. In 1920, on this uneven landscape the renowned golf course architect Harry Shapland Colt was invited to design a golf course. He designed it so well that little has been done to his layout since it first opened for play in 1921. You will do well to find a level lie anywhere on the course, that is with the exception of the greens, which are beautiful putting surfaces, even very early in the spring when we had the pleasure of playing the course. The other noticeable thing in short supply is trees, but the gorse, bracken and the terrain itself are ample substitutes, and provide hazards a plenty. For this is a genuine test of golf, which demands good driving and even better approach play to score well. Set out in two loops of nine holes in a figure of eight, it offers options to start play, though there are rules to govern when and how the 10th tee can be used. The finishing stretch of three holes is a trial that will stick in the memory banks. The 16th is a long hole, a real par 5 made difficult by the prevailing wind, but there is a reward when you leave the green and see the panoramic view over Swansea Bay. The 17th is a devilish par 3, aptly named Quarry with a chasm at the front containing two bunkers to


add to the difficulty of any shot that finishes on the short side. Then the finishing hole is a downhill par four, with views of the clubhouse and Swansea Bay, three of the best to finish the round. Sheep graze the course, for it is common land but the greens are protected by fences, at first appearing intrusive, but soon forgotten as you progress into the round, and appreciate the quality of the springy turf, and become accustomed to the rolling fairways. Clyne has a rich history, in addition to designer Harry Colt, the first professional was Percy Alliss, father of Peter Alliss, they were the first father and son to have played in the Ryder Cup. The only other family duo was Antonio Garrido and his son Ignacio Garrido. Percy was at the club for several years and used his connections to attract famous contemporaries to the club. Noted Australian Norman Von Nida was one of many, and in more recent times Ian Woosnam played the moorland course, which is listed in the best 200 clubs in the British Isles. The club has been fortunate to have long serving employees, both club professional Jonathan Clewett and Head Green-keeper Tony Bull have completed twenty five years service with Clyne Golf Club. The condition of

the course is a credit to the greens staff. It is no surprise that the club has produced talented players, club member Neil Roderick was one of two Welshmen on the winning side in 1989 in the Walker Cup match, the other was Stephen Dodd from Brynhill Golf Club, a rare success for GB & I. Clyne has been very progressive in the approach to advancing the game, being one of the very first clubs to hold a Golf Festival, these "open" events started back in 1921 when the club opened and they are still held in June and July each year, and are very popular with visiting teams and individuals. There is also a unique rule at the club by which all members of teams representing the club in matches eat at the expense of the club, unusual and a grand reminder of past traditions no longer seen at large. The latest addition to features at the club has been the accredited 4* accommodation by Visit Wales in Somerfield Lodge which is adjacent to the main clubhouse. There are six ensuite twin rooms, fully equipped to accommodate twelve golfers, and breakfast is taken in the clubhouse. For those who also wish to dine in the evening, the clubhouse has an excellent reputation for first class food.

For those wishing to sample other courses in the vicinity, there is the benefit of the Gower Golf Experience arrangement, where a cluster of clubs has joined together to reap the advantages of group marketing. The five clubs include Clyne, Langland, Pennard, Ashburnham & Pyle and Kenfig, a good selection of golf within a close proximity, see Clyne golf club website for details. Club General Manager John Hollis will be only too pleased to assist with any requests from golfers wishing to enjoy the Gower experience. In short the Clyne Club offers good golf, good food, good accommodation and most of all a warm welcome. It will be my pleasure to return in the near future to sample again the challenge of true moorland golf, just as Mother Nature intended. Michael Rees For more information visit the website: www.clynegolfclub.com Or by or email: manager@clynegolfclub.com or telephone: 01792 929293

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I WAS HOOKED ON FIZZY DRINKS PETER Lawrie says his form nosedived while he tried to tackle what he called a fizzy drinks addiction. The Irishman, who slumped from just outside the world’s top 100 to a ranking of 896 at the end of 2014, said he was drinking several litres of cola a day. He said he had a ‘near breakdown’ when he tried to rein in his intake. ‘I cut it out completely and went from

Padraig says he’s found ‘the edge’ AFTER ending a seven-year wait to win a title on either the PGA or European tours, Padraig Harrington feels he has rediscovered the ‘mental edge’. Popular three-time Major champion and Ryder Cup star Harrington beat American rookie Daniel Berger, 21, in a play-off to win a rain-delayed Honda Classic. Harrington, now 43, sealed victory on the second extra hole and qualifies for the Masters after missing out last year.

‘Hopefully this isn’t an isolated win,’ said the Dubliner after the victory which lifted him back up to 82nd in the world rankings after beginning the tournament at a very lowly 297th. Padraig Harrington: Harrington has been a Idiosynchratic driven soul as he drilled himself for hours to reap the reward for all the hard (and sometimes idiosyncratic) work that he does.

Recently he was seen hitting balls after walking into the shot with an elastic band looped round his knees; his golf ball is covered with dots that make it look like a football; his putter grip is thickened and tapered to assist his left-handbelow-right grip.

Form-loss Lawrie blames sugar blitz such a high on sugar to a dramatic low. I never recovered.’ Lawrie told Irish radio station Newstalk that he stopped taking the fizzy drinks shortly after finishing 10th at the 2013 Irish Open: ‘I lost all confidence in myself. I drink two or three cans a day (now) but I was drinking litres of the stuff.

Lawrie, who has one win on the European Tour, made the cut in his last three starts and finished tied for 16th at last week’s Malaysia Open - his best result since the Irish Open. Peter Lawrie: ‘Dramatic low’

Southampton 8-handcapper’s 260-yard feat

David aces a par four A WATCH company has rewarded more than 4,700 golfers a limited-edition timepiece for scoring a hole-in-one during a club competition - but Southampton’s David Flower is the first to do so on a par-four this year. David, 52, achieved his monster ace - and maiden hole-in-one - with a driver on the 260-yard, par-four fourth on the Blackwater Course at Wellow GC. The eight-handicapper was rewarded with membership of the BOSS Watches H1 Club and a specially-commissioned, commemorative timepiece. David said: ‘I was three quarters of the way through a poor round - topping and three-

CASEY UPBEAT IN THE STATES ENGLAND’S Paul Casey lost out in a play-off as American James Hahn won his first US PGA Tour title with victory at the Northern Trust Open in California.

David Flower: Playing partners said ‘Good shot, three-putts for a par!’

putting a lot - and stood on the 13th tee and said out loud, ‘Come on, at least hit one good drive today. After a good drive, my two playing partners said, ‘Good shot, threeputts for a par’. Approaching the green, we couldn’t see my ball, so after a few swear words I went behind the green looking for it. ‘After a couple of minutes one of my partners looked in the hole and shouted, ‘Yes! Mine’s a pint!’ - and a £126 bar bill later …’ The scheme is open to any golfer whose club uses HowDidiDo - a free-to-use, webbased social network for golfers - and anybody playing in official club competitions will be eligible. Currently, more than 1,800 clubs use the website.

Casey finished on six under with Hahn and Dustin Johnson but was eliminated at the second play-off hole. Hahn, 33, claimed victory with a 24-foot birdie putt at the next. Casey was still happy with his form: ‘I played great, I really did. I’m not disappointed in any shape or form.’ The 37-year-old hit a three-under-par 68 in the final round, while Hahn and Johnson both shot 69. Casey missed his birdie putt on the second play-off hole at the par-four 10th. Sergio Garcia had a one-stroke lead with two to play, but successive bogeys saw him miss the play-off by a stroke. ‘I’ve always been truthful to myself,‘ said Garcia, ‘and I didn’t deserve to win this week. It’s as simple as that.’

BRIT MASTERS BACK THE British Masters will return to the European Tour in October after a seven-year absence. Ian Poulter, Lee Westwood, Luke Donald and Justin Rose will take turns to host the tournament at a course of their choice. Poulter chose the Marquess course at his local club, Woburn, for this year.

The other McGinley lands a rare hat-trick OUT from beneath the shadow of his high-profile younger brother Paul for a moment, Michael McGinley achieved a remarkable hat-trick in the United Arab Emirates.

The man who won the US PGA in 2008 and The Open in 2007 and 2008 added: ‘I really do believe in myself. I think I’ve found that mental edge that I’ve been lacking the last number of years.’ The former world number two trailed by four shots going into the final delayed round but raced into contention with four consecutive birdies from the 11th.

Even in the hottest country, like Malaysia, I’d have a Coke on the golf course because I was addicted to it.’

While most golfers might be well pleased with three holes-in-one in a lifetime, Michael notched up three in just six days.

Michael McGinley: ‘Incredible feeling’

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UAE resident Michael, a plus-one golfer at the Dubai Creek course, secured his first ace with a four-iron at the difficult

par-three at Jumeirah Golf Estates, home to the DP World Tour Championship every November. On his home course two days later, he holed another at the fifth; during his next round a nine-iron did the trick at the eighth.

‘I had a hole-in-one when I was 15,’ he said, ‘but hadn’t had one since, so to have three in six days is an amazing, incredible feeling.’


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Ladies’ Pink Tour to launch with grand Irish event A GROUND-BREAKING event open to all women players is being staged this summer across one of the British Isles’ finest golf destinations - Ireland’s magnificent north-west coast.

Narin & Portnoo: One of five superb links courses to be played on the Ladies’ Pink Tour

The golfing element of the inaugural Ladies’ Pink Tour will be tougher than the name may suggest, involving rounds on no fewer than five superb links courses over seven days.

By KEITH GING But there is some down-time and even outright luxury on what is intended to be an annual trip, subtitled Along The Wild Atlantic Way. Players will stay at three of Ireland’s leading hotels, with meals and coach transport all arranged, and get to ease any aching joints with a massage at a seaweed bath spa. Three of the scheduled golf days will involve relatively no-pressure practice

Destiny beckons, but can Rory get back into the swing? But as the Masters at Augusta looms, the world number one was struggling to dig his way out of a quicksand of fluctuating form with a game which he himself acknowledged was ‘not quite there’. He failed to contend at the WGC Cadillac Championship at Doral a week after actually missing the cut at the Honda Classic, and the number of competitive rounds before Augusta was dwindling as he tried to rediscover the sparkle. As his mind turned to the possibility of his first Green Jacket, he admitted: ‘The game’s just not quite there. I’m tentative, a little bit scared to play certain shots, because I feel like I can’t at the minute. I have just got to get back at it and try to figure out what I need to do.’

Bubba Watson will defend his title, and the two-times Masters champion will surely be there or thereabouts. Adam Scott has just returned after a 12-week domestic break, looking good.

His legion of fans will be hoping and expecting that a couple more tournaments and some quiet ‘me time’ on the practice ground will revive the chirpy confidence of the Irishman. His A-game is lurking there somewhere, and the genius of McIlroy will rediscover it in time, surely?

MORTEN Orum Madsen shot a hole-in-one in an eagle-eagle finish to claim a share of the lead with a first-round 63 at the Tshwane Open in South Africa. Denmark’s Madsen, 26, got his ace on the eighth - his 17th - in Waterkloof and was the 20th on the European Tour this season. But the final glory was with George Coetzee, pictured above, who returned to the scene of his first golfing triumph to claim the event at Pretoria Country Club. South African Coetzee put home advantage to full use to win his second European Tour title, carding a flawless final round of 65 to finish one shot ahead of compatriot Jacques Blaauw, who had equalled the course record of 61.

So nearly 59

• 1 night at Glenlo Abbey Hotel, Galway. • 2 nights at Mount Falcon Estate, Ballina. • 3 nights at Harvey’s Point, Donegal, plus welcome buffet. • 3 practice rounds at Connemara, Carne and Enniscrone GCs. • Seaweed bath and massage at Kilcullen Seaweed Baths, Enniscrone. • 2 rounds of tournament golf at Donegal (Murvagh) and Narin & Portnoo GCs. • Final-night prize-giving dinner at Harvey’s Point.

THE European Tour’s first round of the magical 59 strokes was within sight for Spain’s Adrian Otaegui at the Tshwane Open at Pretoria. Otaegui, 22, made his ninth birdie at the 16th, needing to pick up two shots over the last two holes, both par fours, to create history. A par at 17 and a final bogey left him on 62.

Players interested should contact the North and West Coast Links group, which also helps to market and arrange trips to six other superb Irish courses, by phoning 0035391 868642, emailing sales@northandwestcoastlinks.com or www.northandwestcoastlinks.com.

‘A little bit scared’: Rory McIlroy

McIlroy is assured of arriving in Georgia as the short-odds favourite for the one Major he has yet to win.

Dane lands double eagle

John McLaughlin, CEO of organisers North and West Coast Links, said: ‘This will be a really special, fun week on great courses and in luxurious surroundings and one that is unique to us. We expect to have ladies from all over the world competing. And while it is a tournament for the last two days, the emphasis will be on experiencing Ireland - the hospitality, food, scenery, culture and heritage.’ The tour, from June 13 to 19, is open to ladies from around the world and is also in a good cause, helping to raise funds for Cancer Care West. It costs €1,815 (about £1,340) per person sharing a room, with daily breakfast. The full programme, with all transfers by luxury coach:

A FEW weeks ago, a career Grand Slam for Rory McIlroy looked to be squarely on the cards.

Meanwhile, other contenders were looking strong. Dustin Johnson, just back from a six-month ‘leave of absence’, comfortably won the Cadillac with a big-hitting game and velvet touch around the greens which looked promising for Augusta.

rounds - the first on the moonscape links of Connemara and the other two amid the stupendous duneland of top-rated Carne and Enniscrone. These will be followed by two rounds of tournament golf at elegant Donegal and ruggedly old-fashioned Narin & Portnoo. Individual and team prizes will be awarded during a final-night dinner.

Sponsor boost for Irish Open THE Irish Open has received a huge boost with news that a title sponsor has been secured for this year’s event at Royal County Down. Dubai Duty Free, an Irish-owned company, has agreed a one-year contract, with an option to extend a deal which Rory McIlroy’s charity, The Rory Foundation, helped to land. Among the names already committed to take part in the event from May 28 are Rickie Fowler, Sergio Garcia, Ernie Els Lee Westwood, McIlroy, Graeme McDowell Darren Clarke and Padraig Harrington.

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Mark shines at Hayling MARK Treleaven (Hayling) shot an impressive on his home course to win the PGA South Hayling Pro-Am, and take the £800 winner’s cheque. He edged out Matthew Rice (Purley Downs) by one stroke while in third place were Tom Fleming (Frilford Heath) and Jonathan Barnes (Oak Park) who both carded 69s. Hayling’s assistant PGA pro David Aitchison said: ‘It’s no surprise to us that Mark won, he always plays well on his home track! The course is playing very firm at the moment and it’s really difficult to get the ball near the flag. The wind got a fair bit stronger in the afternoon when Mark went out, making his five birdies on the back nine all the more impressive.’


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OAK PARK - JEWELS Oak Park Golf Club is set in 180 acres of gently undulating countryside three miles west of Farnham on the Hampshire Surrey border in the quaint and picturesque village of Crondall. The village, which provides the title to one of the two courses on the site, dates back to the year 880AD, when it was under the rule of King Alfred. When you visit the location and sample the lovely rural setting, and witness the tranquillity, it is hard to perceive that it is just a few miles from the town of Farnham and the M3 motorway. Although it is part of the Crown Golf portfolio, it is a traditional members club, which in line with all others welcomes and encourages visitors. There are two courses on the complex, an eighteen hole course, The Woodland Course, and a nine hole layout aptly called The Village, in addition to a wellequipped driving range which has 16 indoor bays and outdoor grass tees. The course first opened in the early 1980’s, under the name Crondall Golf Club, when it was a privately owned development undertaken by Bernie & Rosemary Smythe. The club was subsequently sold to American Golf, but they retained ownership of the land and a lease was issued to the club, so that when the Crown Group took over American Golf, Oak Park Golf Club became a member of the Crown family of courses. The club has seen several changes since the original design, which was two loops of nine, one adjacent to the clubhouse plus a further nine holes over the road. When nine new holes were added, which was made possible by the creation of “The Hill” the layout was changed to make the eighteen holes course one complete entity across the road. The new eighteen holes were christened The Woodland Course, and the nine adjacent to the clubhouse became The Village. The Woodland is a par 70, with a yardage of 6065 from the back tees; play is possible all year round, even in adverse weather conditions. The greens staff, led by Head Greenkeeper Ian Robins ensure that both the courses, which are assuredly layouts to enjoy, are kept in tip top condition throughout the year, much to the appreciation of the members.

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The two courses are both tree lined parkland, and the Village is fairly level and undulating, it is exemplified by doglegs which demand good shot placement, and by a very sporty par 3 over water. In contrast The Woodland, across the road from the clubhouse is a far cry from its sibling. Although the front nine has a similar tendency for doglegs, the first four holes of the back nine are dominated by The Hill, and carry nicknames such as Amen Corner and Cardiac Hill. Whichever title you care to use the stretch is a challenge and a potential card wrecker especially the 13th hole which is considered the signature hole on the course. If you manage to complete those holes in good fashion, the open ditches on the holes on the run in keep you on your toes. A good challenge, but very fair test of golf whatever the handicap, and one you will complete with a smile of satisfaction for a good round of golf. Being part of the Crown family brings many benefits for the members, they are allowed to play at any of the twenty six Crown courses, and can enjoy very beneficial rates at the St Mellions Resort, the flagship of the group in Devon. For families at all Crown clubs there is an added bonus, for children of members who are under fourteen years of age have free subscriptions under the Kids Go Free Scheme. The club has 75 junior members at present, and they receive every encouragement to participate in club competitions and social activities. The teaching professional is Matthew Crew, and he makes full use of the driving range for lessons and instruction. The Seniors Section is very strong, a situation that exists in many clubs around the country,

described as the backbone of golf clubs in a recent article in the national press, it is difficult to discount the theory. The members run a comprehensive diary of competitions and events, organise senior club matches and run a website for the participants. At the same time they are fully committed to joining in with the social and other activities of the club. Having a second course which is not so physically demanding is very good for those who are slowing down or need a less demanding test, and different membership packages make that process very simple. The social scene is flourishing with a year round programme of activities, all supporting the concept of involvement in club life, which is fundamental for a good active and vibrant club. Quiz nights, dinner dances, coffee mornings and the like all help to cement the structure of the club. The club Captains for the year 2014 Lucy Church and Dieter Quent, had a commitment to raise funds for “Riding For The Disabled” after a marvellous effort well supported by all concerned they raised the sum of £13,107, and the presentation subsequently took place at the club. It was the second year that the Charity had benefitted and in all over £26,600 was raised by the club members. The picture shows both Captains at the presentation of the cheque which was received on behalf of the organisation by two of the helpers, Fiona and Kim and celebrity guest, Smokey the pony. There will be two new beneficiaries for 2015, they have been decided and two very worthy causes have been nominated. They are The Bernard Gallagher Defibrillator Campaign and Dreams Come True for Young People.


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S IN THE CROWN Sarah Heath

Graham Beagley

SERVICE WITH A SMILE The last few months has seen changes in personnel and new faces arrive at Oak Park, new General Manger is Sarah Heath, a very experienced Crown employee, and she has settled in well and continues to impress the membership with her own personal style. Sarah was a professional golfer and member of the European Ladies Tour for a number of years. She turned professional and joined when she was twenty years old and had ten top twenty finishes in her career and competed with the best in the business, including Laura Davies, Anika Sorenstam and Karrie Webb, a tough environment that develops mental strength that will ensure she is ready for anything that the new role delivers. She becomes one of the ever growing numbers of ladies involved in the running of golf clubs and sports organisations. Having grown up in Shropshire in a golfing family environment she is fully conversant with the special features that enable the membership to enjoy club facilities to the full. Heading a professional group means getting to know the different sections of the club, and involving them in club life beyond the simple playing of the game, a philosophy that has been readily welcomed. There has been a positive drive to encourage the local villagers to utilise the club, and the response has been very positive, with well supported social events becoming a feature of club activity.

As well as course improvements the aesthetics have not been forgotten, and the new club entrance gives style and presence to the way into the club carpark, a marked improvement. In the current climate there is a positive requirement for all clubs to maximise the use of their assets, the past year has seen the demise of several clubs around the country, due to lack of return on the investment. Local authority courses, notorious for the nomadic style of players, have found the need for land for construction too great to resist. Oak Park is blessed with a very good clubhouse, which lends itself well to organising functions without disrupting general access to the clubhouse; the ability to partition the rooms a particular advantage. New chef Sara Soulsby has had a key role to play in the philosophy of getting members involved in the club activities, and the appointment of club member Graham Beagley as Retail Manager in the shop has also proven to be a very successful and popular move. Graham is a scratch golfer and is the Club Champion, well-known amongst the membership and well versed in the club and the two courses.

to offer, there is a special category for those with restricted or irregular times when they are able to play. With Freedom Play they can enjoy all the benefits, including competitions for a sum of £245.00 with credits to play, additional credits can be added in blocks of £50 packages, so giving the greatest degree of flexibility. There are currently vacancies for full and five day members, and they can be tailored to playing on either of both courses, and with the onset of spring and summer it is the ideal time to take up the challenge. The Fitness & Health Club is onsite, offering the latest state of the art equipment for the health and fitness enthusiast. With fees of just £15 per month, no joining fee and no contract there is much to recommend it. The membership also gives discounts in the bar and restaurant, and social membership of the club. The perfect package, especially for those who live in the village or in the immediate vicinity, where convenience is important for maximum utilisation.

Oak Park has much to offer, first class golf on two complimentary courses, a growing social scene, and a good bar and restaurant, and a health and fitness centre on hand. Add all the additional benefits of the Crown Golf Group, and the club is equipped to satisfy the needs of the most discerning golfer. The team are ready and waiting for your enquiry with a package to suit the individual. The aim of General Manager Sarah is simple and comprehensive, to make Oak Park Golf Club “The Place To Be”; with her enthusiasm and commitment, and the backing of her team, it is hard not to be convinced. She has two very positive factors in her favour, firstly two really good golf courses, and also a very friendly and welcoming environment created by the enthusiastic staff and the membership. Michael Rees Contact Details: Oak Park Golf Club, Heath Lane, Crondall, Farnham, Surrey, GU10 5PB Tel: 01252 850850 Email: oakpark-manager@crown-golf.co.uk www.oakparkgolf.co.uk

Good catering makes the task of attracting clients so much easier, and promoting wedding receptions and family social celebrations, both for members and nonmembers is sound business. The club is keen to attract new members, with so much

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LEGENDS OF THE GAME... JOHN DERR - THE UNKNOWN FRIEND As April draws near, thoughts turn to the first major of the year, The Masters, and it was during my first visit to Augusta in the year 2000, that I became aware of John Derr, the subject of Legends this time. It was at the Golf Writers Dinner, the topic arose about the contributions made by broadcasters, journalists and golf correspondents, not only to the event but to golf in general. I was told that John Derr had been to the Masters every year since 1935, had been working since that year, and had been first a radio, then a television commentator since the very first broadcasts. I calculated that his attendance at 69 Masters events made him probably the most experienced man of the century, and he has not stopped yet. In 2015 he will celebrate his 97th birthday, still writes books about his life and the game and his story makes him a true Legend of the Game. He was blessed with two gifts, a love of sport, and the knack of being in the right place at the right time, gifts that would change his life. It all began in 1934, he was 17 years old and worked as an unpaid journalist for the Gazette in the town of Gastonia in North Carolina. His weekly wage was $12, but the editor charged him for tuition on how to do it. He was covering the college football game between Duke and Georgia Tech in 1934 and was seated next to Atlanta’s O B Keeler (the man who chronicled the career of Bobby Jones). Keller asked him if he played golf, and John told him about the two hole course his father had built for him on the family farm. He said he owned three balls and two clubs, both 7 irons. He invited John to come to “this golf tournament where all the big names would be playing” in Georgia the following year. From the day he arrived in Augusta, his life changed. The first person he met was Keeler, who took him to meet Bobby Jones, who proceeded to introduce him to journalistic giants Grantland Rice and Ralph McGill, and by Sunday he was on the terrace and part of

Augusta National

Bobby Jones

the Press Corps. There news was brought by a caddie that Sarazen had had a 2 on the 15th. They all thought it was a mistake and that he meant the short 16th, nevertheless Derr rushed down to the last tee and watched Gene Sarazen play the 18th hole. John estimated that because of the rain, there were less than 2,000 patrons on the course, and a meagre few on the 15th. The Squire gave him an eye witness account for his copy, describing how he had wanted to hit a 3 wood for his second, but his caddie convinced him to hit a 5 wood because of the wet ground. He holed out and the rest as they say is history. The 15th ( which was the first hole televised at Augusta) became John Derr’s home for the first 22 years The Masters was televised, he broadcast from the tower every year from 1956 to 1977. When the doyen of sports writers Grantland Rice died, Bobby Jones called John and asked him to be a pallbearer at the funeral. The New York Times reported that they included Jones himself, boxers Jack

Dempsey and Gene Tunney, Eddie Arcaro (Hall of Fame jockey) baseball’s Casey Stengel, Don Budge from tennis, and Bobby Jones unknown friend. From that day, that was what John was called. His penchant for being in the right place was also evident during his war service, serving in India he became friends with Gandhi’s son, and visited the family home in New Delhi and numerous times met the famous pacifist. Many years later he met Albert Einstein and numerous other famous people, playing golf with President Eisenhower, always stating that he always felt comfortable meeting famous people. As a young boy he had met Henry Ford and Thomas Edison when they came to the family farm in the 1920’s to investigate the use of cottonseed oil. In 1953 he was the sole American golf correspondent to come to Carnoustie to report on Ben Hogan’s challenge for The Open Championship. John had difficulty finding accommodation in the town. The hotel where Hogan was staying had trouble

providing enough hot water for the baths Hogan needed after playing, so he was offered rooms at the home of a local Laird, and so gave his hotel room to John Derr. He had the unique privilege of interviewing and reporting on the success of Hogan who was taken to the hearts of the Scots, who duly christened him “The Wee Ice Mon”. His closest friend on the tour was Sam Snead, they often roomed together, Snead was a far cry from the Hillbilly image he was given, a shrewd man, proud of his ability and one who loved the simple pleasures in life. John Derr was a natural, so he could enjoy the gift of meeting the many talented and famous people he encountered during his working life, and for many years after. He still has a crystal clear recollection of events, even back to that stirring Masters win by Sarazen in 1935, with the shot that was heard around the world. He is the ultimate raconteur, has dined alongside the likes of Frank Sinatra and Joe DiMaggio, Babe Ruth, President Eisenhower, Grace Kelly, played with Bob Hope and Bing Crosby and he is a walking history of the game of golf. He is the man who became a friend to the Giants of the World. If you are fascinated by the story of John Derr, you can read all about him in his book entitled “My Place At The Table”, published in the United States. Though he may be “The Unknown Friend” of Bobby Jones, he has made his own circle of friends one of the most remarkable, he met virtually all the great names of the 20th Century, and he is a real Legend of the Game

O B Keeler

Ben Hogan

Gene Saracen

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Michael Rees


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! OW S ! N IT EAR IN Y TH 15

Senior Men's 2015 Open Championship at Meon Valley Hotel & Country Club on Tuesday 28th July 2015 Sponsored by

18 Hole Individual Stableford

Handicap – Full allowance off ‘Tee of the day’ – max. of 24 (25 Handicap and above may enter but will play off 24) • Live entertainment from Adger Brown • Extensive Prize Table • Entry ONLY £36 per player • Inclusive of coffee on arrival, buffet lunch and FREE use of the 9-hole Valley course

One of the South’s lead in and most so g after mainst rt ream comedians

(subject to availability on the day)

• Entrants must be 55 years of age or over on Tuesday 28th July 2015

PLEASE SEND ALL ENTRIES TO: The Golf Secretary, Meon Valley Hotel & Country Club,Sandy Lane, Shedfield, Southampton, Hants, SO32 2HQ Telephone: 01329 836868 (Entries to be received no later than Tuesday June 30th 2015) Entry forms and other forthcoming events can be downloaded from www.golfempire.co.uk

E N T RY F O R M Please enter me for the

TEE TIMES SENIOR MEN’S 2015 OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP at the Meon Valley Hotel & Country Club on Tuesday 28th July 2015 Name:...………..………………………………………… Club:…………………………………………………. Tel No: …………………………………………. Address:…………………………………………………………………....…………………………....…………………………....…………………………....…..… …………………....………………..…………………………....………………..………………....…………………………....…………………………....………… ………………....…………………………...………………....…………………………....…………………………....………… Postcode:……………….……...… Email:…………...………….….………….………………………… Handicap: …………….......…. Age:.…………… Date of Birth:.……..……..……………… I enclose my £36 entry fee, Cheque made payable to: Marriott Meon Valley Hotel

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HIGH FLYING FUNDRAISING AT MILL GREEN GC staggering £5,041 was presented by Ken Gordon. Mill Green GC Captain and Phil Stokes, Interim General Manager to the Disabled Golf Association CIC, representing funds raised by the Captain’s Charity for 2014. On hand to receive the cheque were one legged golfer Stan Bembenek who lost his entire left leg and half his pelvis to bone cancer; Graeme Robertson who has primary progressive MS and is Team England Captain and works for DGA as national events co-ordinator; and Graeme’s wife (and carer) Sue who is a volunteer and Marketing Director at DGA.


About the Disabled Golf Association w

Captain Ken Gordon said “I couldn’t be more proud than to have DGA as beneficiaries of our fundraising efforts”. On behalf of DGA Sue Robertson replied “We should like to thank most sincerely all the members at Mill Green GC who are a very special group of people who have believed in the work we do and the difference DGA makes to the lives of disabled and impaired people across the country. 2014 has been an incredible year where we have all had much fun raising much needed funds; we have to look forwards to see if 2015 can match this! This donation is by far the largest single donation we have received to date and represents an incredible effort by the members at Mill Green GC.” Disabled and impaired golfers raised awareness at Mill Green GC early in the season on 13th June where they played a fourball 2-ball better ball format, with one member from DGA playing and being guided around the course by the members at Mill Green GC. Stan Bembenek, CEO of DGA said “We had an incredible day back in June; I had the chance to play with the Captain, Ken Gordon – we played pretty well I have to say. Everyone seemed to really enjoy the format.” DGA is a pan-disability, not-for-profit organization, membership is free. More information is at disabledgolf.org.uk and fb.com/disabledgolf with events scheduled all over the country.

Stan Bembenek and Graeme Robertson of DGA receive cheque from Ken Gordon and Phil Stokes of Mill Green GC

About the Disabled Golf Association Our main aims are to promote the game of golf as a pathway to a healthier lifestyle and greater social inclusion for those who are disabled, irrespective of age, gender or disability. This includes providing the means to make it easier for the disabled player to access the facilities both on and off the course. We aim to provide information about equipment to permit that increased accessibility, this can be done by means of single-seater buggies specifically designed for the disabled player, bespoke club and prosthetic adaptation as well as supplying professional coaching at events from those who have been trained to teach the sport. We aim to attract not only those who have played in the past prior to an

illness or injury, but also those who have never played the sport but are seeking the unique benefits of a sport which can be played by anyone either alone against the course, or in teams against each other. We look to provide a playing environment where the clubs are disabled friendly and accessible and the courses are pre-vetted to ensure that they are capable of being played by those with limited mobility. We are helping to assist in the launching of coaching academies and training sessions throughout the UK. Also from our base in Gloucestershire we aim to provide information on courses, equipment and holiday resorts for the disabled golfer.

Stan Bembenek and Graeme Robertson of DGA receive cheque from Ken Gordon and Phil Stokes of Mill Green GC

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Winter Golf on the Island of Mallorca

Much has been written about golf on the island of Mallorca and why I wanted to find for out for myself what this small Iberian island had to offer as a winter golf destination. Prior to my arrival at the end of November last year, the island had been enjoying unseasonably warm weather - a good sign I thought as I flew from City Airport leaving behind chilly winter winds and thick layers of grey cloud. A few pleasant days of golf in warm winter sunshine was just what the doctor ordered but sadly that was not to be. The day after our arrival the heavens opened and down came winter’s rain. Thankfully, despite this unexpected patch of bad weather courses played well and drainage was good, which meant they mostly remained relatively dry and very playable. Flights to Mallorca in late November are less frequent which is why I ended up flying from City Airport even though this meant having to travel across London on a Sunday with one suitcase and another reason why I decided not to bring my golf clubs and instead ended up hiring them from Clubs for Hire where they can be conveniently collected and returned to Palma Airport. This is far less hassle and a much cheaper option compared to the extra cost British Airways charge for golf clubs. For non-golfers there are plenty of alternative attractions although winter golf breaks are particularly well established. This time we stayed at the five star Castella Hotel, an old converted castle that has been recently redesigned in the style of a large Spanish manor house. There are twenty-four excellent golf courses within an hour’s drive from the hotel and it takes a mere ten minute to get to the town’s centre. Fortunately there’s also a regular half hourly bus service that takes you to and from local golf courses and into the town’s centre if, like me, you need a day off to taste the delights of shopping in Palma where there’s an eclectic choice of wonderful boutiques and designer shops full of mouth watering fashionable clothes and shoes.

For our first round of golf early tee times had been arranged at the Arrabella Son Munaner course, an 18 hole par 72 Championship course designed by Kurt Rossknecht and built in 2000 but due to the recent heavy rains this was conveniently changed to midday. Once the heavy clouds disappeared replaced by warm sunshine the greens, fairways and bunkers dried out in no time. The course is a delight to play and has fast challenging greens and long undulating fairways, some quite narrow and bordered by tall pine trees or olive groves. The scenery surrounding this course is truly spectacular and often described as one of the island’s best golf experiences. Our next round of golf was played at the Son Vida course, one of Mallorca’s oldest and more established courses and initially inaugurated by the late Prince Rainer of Monaco back in 1964 at the time F.W. Hawtree designed the course. Fourteen years ago Kurt Rosknecht, a popular designer in these parts redesigned the entire course with some holes undergoing a complete makeover where water hazards were added and bunkers enlarged or removed. Fairways have all been re-sown with a new variety of Bermuda grass and this helped to vastly improve the way the course now plays.

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Despite heavy clouds throughout the day, the rain held off enabling us to enjoy a pleasant 18 holes. In the bar afterwards I bumped into the resident pro who poignantly explained, “Remember, this is a course that needs to be played more with the head than it does with the arms”. I wished these words of wisdom had been told to me before I played although this par 71 course has now fully matured and fortunately no-longer suffers from that open field look many newer courses have to put up with.

and smooth. This is another course that affords splendid views of the Bay of Palma from some of the more elevated holes. Short winter golf breaks in warmer climes are highly recommended to help keep your game together during those long, cold winter months in England. April Tod

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION: Luckily it was all blue skies and warm sun shone for our final round of golf played on the charming Son Quint 18 hole par 72 course, part of the Son Vida estate. The course is jointly designed by Kurt Rossknecht and Ramon Espinosa and meanders through mature pine forests, almond and olive groves over rolling terrain almost to the edge of Palma’s suburbs. Between these two designers they have developed an excellent course which is quite tough in places but challenging enough for all levels of golfer. There are several long wide open par 5 fairways and a couple of interestingly designed par 3s. Personally I found the course particularly enjoyable and in spite of the recent heavy rainfalls fairways had drained well and the greens remained fast

Castilla Hotel Son Vida www.luxurycollections.com/castillo Arabella Golf Son Munaner Arabella Golf Son Quint Arabella Golf Son Vida golf.mallorca@arabellagolf.com www.arabellagolfmallorca.com Flights – British Airways www.britishairways.com Hire clubs www.clubstohire.com


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MORE OF A LEGEND... ...JOHN JACOBS OBE The subject of Legends of the Game in February was John Jacobs, aptly given the nickname Dr Golf. The title of Legend could not be more appropriate. As a result I have been asked to write more about the man and so I visited John shortly before his 90th birthday his New Forest home, and was able to expand my personal files with more stories from his incredible career. Sitting with John and talking golf is like a history lesson in the arts and craft of the game, the politics, the personalities, and with an exposure to how much the game has changed in his lifetime. A simple prompt and the great man begins his tales. Born in a house at Lindrick Golf Club in Yorkshire in March 1925, he was the son of a golf professional, and his life was moulded by golf. His first job was as assistant to Willie Wallace at the Hallamshire Golf Club near to his home. There he worked seven days each week for a wage less than £4.00 per week, plus five shillings an hour for lessons. He taught every day including Christmas Day, and his only days off were allowed for him to play in tournaments. He finally took over as Club Professional when Willie retired, in a role light years from that of a professional today. John then went off to Egypt with his new young wife Rita, to be the Professional at Gazira Golf and Sports Club, initially for a probationary period, but he soon convinced the members that he was the man for the job. Probably the best decision I ever made is how John described it. However his good fortune did not continue, World events took a hand with the onset of the Suez War, and a necessity for the Jacobs family to be repatriated. He only escaped the country by speeding through the desert, dodging armed patrols, helped by a royal aide he had been teaching. All his belongings squashed into his large American saloon, which had to be taken by barge out to the ship on which he just managed to get passage home.

Q&A WITH JOHN JACOBS Q. What do you think of trial by television, with rules infringements punished after the event ? John - I do not like it, but there is a fear of opening the door even a crack, which creates a grey area. In no other sport could a game be over and the decision reversed on a comment from a layman or television spectator. The worst cases were Padraig Harrington and Mark Roe, but there, courage and acceptance have shown what a unique and wonderful game this is. There have been examples in the past when common sense has prevailed, such as the Bobby Locke incident in the 1950’s at The Open. Q. Why do you think the over 40’s are now doing so well ? John - They are fitter, diet much better, and have superior equipment. They have belief and temperament, gained from experience and the advantage of sports psychologists. If they had been around when I played I would have consulted one, because in hindsight I believe I just used to try too hard. Q. Who is the best player you have seen ? John - Byron Nelson, a great golfer and a wonderful man.

singles match against Cary Middlecoff, who said he had been beaten whilst playing at his best. He was hugely disappointed again when he did not make the side in 1957, for the match was ironically played and won by GB &I at Lindrick, the place where he had been born and reared.

After his narrow escape to the United Kingdom he was determined to become a tour player, which he did with no small success, something never readily admitted by him.

Later he became Ryder Cup Captain, serving twice, in 1979 and again in 1981, but it was his teaching that brought him fame and recognition, and made such an impact. While he was at Sandy Lodge, he met and became firm friends with Laddie Lucas, a wartime RAF hero and a golfer of great talent, their friendship blossomed into a successful business relationship, which lasted years. Laddie was famed for his spectacular landing on the golf course at Princes when his Spitfire was damaged. It was through Laddie that he met one of his most famous pupils, Battle of Britain fighter ace Douglas Bader, who managed to play great golf despite having two artificial legs, playing with the same determination that got him back into the RAF after losing his legs in a plane crash early in his flying career.

In fact he had a very good playing career, during which he won the Dutch Open and the South African Matchplay Championship, and had a 100% win record in the 1955 Ryder Cup. He went to America early to play on the winter circuit, and gained experience at Thunderbird Country Club, this was to stand him in good stead for the Ryder Cup itself. He won both his foursomes, where he was first out with Johnny Fallon, and also his

John had found his true vocation in his teaching, his reputation is worldwide, he has, at some time, coached the English, Scottish, French, German, Swedish, Italian and Spanish teams. Been associated with the Walker Cup teams between 1963 and 1987, and helped the Curtis Cup sides. The Spanish, with whom he has a special relationship, presented him with the Medal Of Merit for his contribution to golf for 25 years.

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With Laddie Lucas as his partner, he set up Athlon Golf, which created golf centres around the country. Then in 1971 went to the United States with his ideas and established the John Jacobs Golf Schools in the USA, he went into partnership with an American professional named Shelley Futch. The Jacobs successful teaching methods were passed on to a formidable team of instructors, which ensured the continuing advancement of the schools, which 25,000 pupils attend annually. An operation that now covers five States. In the process he established a brilliant programme that produced some of the finest teachers in the world. Despite the fact that it has been many years since John was involved with Futch, he has continued to exploit the methods, reputation and integrity of Dr Golf. He uses his photographs, record of achievements and most importantly his testimonials from Jack Nicklaus, Claud Harmon, Hank Haney and Tiger Woods himself. When discussing his ventures in the United States, John allows himself a shake of the head and a whimsical smile, an indication that he was not fully rewarded for the success he achieved. His list of achievements is staggering, founder of the Professional Golfers Architects Association, Vice President of the Golf Writers, given the 5 Star Award by the PGA of Europe and in between written eight books and produced five teaching videos.

In the early 70’s, he was approached to became the formulator of the European Tour, his overseas connections gave him a unique strength to establish this. His success with the PGA and the European Tour, laid the foundations for what is the European Tour today, nurturing and developing it through the difficult days, and encouraging new sponsors into the game, and expanding the tour throughout Europe. He was then made President of the PGA for two years from 1999. His contribution to golf was recognised in 1997 when he was awarded the OBE by the Queen, and he was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in November 2000, followed by induction into the Teaching Hall of Fame in 2001. None of these awards came as a surprise they were simply recognition for a life time of dedication to the game he still loves ardently today. Renowned Coach Butch Harmon said, and I repeat deliberately “ there is not one golf teacher who does not owe something to John Jacobs, he simply wrote the book on coaching”. There is nothing to add after that comment except to say that it could be extended into everything that John has done through his career. He is the true outdoor man, for in addition to golf he is a dedicated sportsman and highly accomplished fly fisherman, the principle reason he says he came to live in Hampshire. The tales keep flowing, Michael Rees


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PERSIMMON - the legend. This hard, resilient American timber has long been recognised as the most perfect golf club head material - in fact nothing gets near it for the essentials of distance, accuracy and feel. Persimmon weighs some 52 lbs per cubic foot, and its relative hardness, measured by the rebound characteristic modulus of elasticity, is superior to other woods. Persimmon cushions little at impact, allowing the wood to maximise energy transference to the ball. To quote "Persimmon is nature's gift to the game of golf. Its performance value is eternal".

For the first time, young players discover the unique benefits of playing persimmon whilst established golfers are amazed by the performance and playability when aligned with the modern golf shaft. So where is the drawback? - simply that persimmon is expensive to source and requires skill to manufacture in direct contrast to the mass-produced factory product of the major brands. www.persimmongolf.co.uk

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Continuing the saga of a late-convert golfer’s search for glory on the greens. . . CRACK open the champagne - the tadpoles are back. And you know what that means: Spring, sunshine, and we can put away the cumbersome winter woollies, waterproofs and all the rest of the personal lagging. We can even put away the electric socks. You don’t have any electric socks? Shame on you. Frozen golf is rather like childbirth. Once it’s over, we forget about it. Permit me to remind you… Beep beep, beep beep. Six-forty-five alarm. Raise nose over blanket. Aaaargh! Nasal frostbite. We bus-pass chaps feel the cold. And we don’t leap from the sheets quite as quickly as we once did. Back to sleep.

Now I feel a spring in my golfing step

Golf shoes, preferably two sizes too big to accommodate the socks, fur-lined hat with ear-flaps in case you decide to make a late dash for Moscow (that’s how Hitler was caught out), and half-a-ton of porridge preferably taken internally.


Scrape the crust of frost off the windscreen in the half-dark, and you’re ready to get out there.

By Bob Evans

You’ll be warm, no doubt about that.

followed by sleeveless pullover in case a tiny therm has sneaked out.

Okay, okay, I’m coming.

Then the windproof jersey as worn by Artctic explorer. (It has been scientifically proved that the temperature on the average golf course is seven degrees below anything that Scott experienced. And Scott couldn’t putt for toffee).

Time to layer up. If you don’t have a personal valet, this may take some time. Thermal vest, like a slinky seal-skin. Roll-neck sweater to hold the heat in. Heavy-duty rugby shirt,

Then, the lower decks. Thermal tights from toe to tum, held in place by hillbilly-style pants. All sealed in by fleece-lined trousers, guaranteed wind and water proof.

Troubling thoughts. They’ll all be waiting. Des and Clive, Ted and Den, John and Jim, all the others and I’ll be letting them down…

enough warmth to heat a small bungalow. One note of warning: if you think you can smell burnt burgers, either take them off or step into a water hazard.

Wind and water-proof from the outsidecoming-in, of course. I cannot speak for the other way round. Finally, the electric socks. Believe me, no man should face a winter morning without them, although I have to say that I possess the only pair I have ever seen. A birthday present from my son. They are huge, heavy chunks of chain-mail wool, which go up to and almost over the knee. But what makes them so effective is the battery in top of each sock, giving off

But whether you can swing a club is rather less certain, since the nearest you can manage to a walk if a sort of unsteady lurch rather like Dr Frankenstein’s creation. Just think, until recently you did this every golf day. Now that all you need is a crisp cotton shirt to keep off the sun, you will have forgotten all this. Just thought I’d remind you. Because next October it all starts again. Right?

NATIONAL PRESS MAKING THE NEWS On Monday the 9th March 2015, an article appeared in the Daily Express, written by a senior golfer Colin Dunne, a member at Petersfield Golf Club in Hampshire. In it he portrays the image and also the importance of the older contingent in golf clubs today. It is an amusing and at the same time thought provoking piece about the status of golf club membership, which has fallen dramatically in Scotland, Wales and England. He highlights the significance of what he tongue in cheek entitles “comical old golfers” and “old gits” to the viability of the members club. There is one poignant and amusing paragraph which I will repeat verbatim for those who have not seen it: it reads “Little old chaps weren’t always little old chaps. A short while ago they were ambassadors and judges, powerful men of business, teachers, electricians and no doubt the odd bookie. One chap was rumoured to have risked his life in the uniform of the Queen. We thought he was SAS, but it turned out he’d been a traffic warden in Portsmouth.” Colin also goes on to mention Diary of a Buspass Golfer the regular article which appears in Tee Times. He describes the magazine in

very complimentary terms stating “Tee Times is a highly successful FREE monthly magazine with thousands of readers in the Southern Counties.” The most significant comment is the one made by Tee Times Editor Peter Watson, who states that without seniors, many clubs just wouldn’t be able to carry on. Thought for the day – No seniors, possibly no golf !! Staff Reporter 44 TEE TIMES

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Continuing the saga of a late-convert golfer’s search for glory on the greens. . . GENTLEMEN, our time has come. At last we bus-pass golfers are about to get the recognition we deserve – and about time too. Golf is in serious trouble. Tiger’s playing like me, The Open is going to Sky, but worse, much worse than that, players are deserting the sport in legions. For 10 years, the membership of golf clubs has been in steep decline. You must’ve seen the signs. Clubs which once had waiting-lists as long th d t t d tti b

OK, we creak. But we may be the saviours of golf. . .


on Monday morning, we’ll be here all week, tottering from hole to hole before slumping in the clubhouse to dream of Sylvia Peters. I saw this for myself the other day when a pal took me up to the Petersfield club. What a joy. Lovely well-kept course with just enough hills to make it interesting. Smart clubhouse. Helpful pro shop. Friendly members. A visitor – a retired miner from Cwmbran – who was proposing to play by himself was invited to join two members before he’d taken the cover off his driver. Now that’s friendly. Lik

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t l b th




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APRIL 2015

Monthly tuition to get you on top of your game by Advanced PGA Lady Professional, Katie Dawkins


- 01794 329 344

Based at Meon Valley Golf and Country Club

COWDRAY PARK GOLF CLUB Everywhere you want to be

The One Plane Swing

UP AND OVER WITH EASE We have all been in a spot on the golf course where between the ball and our target lies a cavernous bunker or rushing river!! At times like this our nerves tend to get the better of us. Rather than focussing on where we want the ball to land or finish, we worry about how we are going to plant the ball into the hazard ahead! Or we remember all the bad shots we’ve hit before in similar situations and pray they won’t happen again! Of course the inevitable happens, the ball careers off in to the water or sand or we panic and it flies through the green, as we knew it would. So how do we avoid shot wasting like this? It all comes down to convincing yourself you can achieve the shot in hand and RELAXING!! FOCUS on where you DO want the ball to go, not where you DON’T. Follow this nerve-bashing routine and all will be well! Firstly – DO NOT LOOK AT THE HAZARD AND DO NOT PANIC. Focus solely on where your ball needs to go. Firmly fix your attention on the green or area you will land the ball. Choose a club that you are confident with. The hazard will make you tense enough as it is let alone worrying about being unable to execute the shot. Stand behind the ball and pick your line. Aiming properly here is critical. I like to pick something on the horizon far away (like a telegraph pole or tree), this takes my focus further away from the hazard in front of me. Pick a twig or leaf in front of the ball in line with the flag, as a mini target. Do not pick something in the hazard as this only draws your attention to the danger. Have a few practice swings to really feel the shot and boost your confidence. Take one deep breath and set up to the ball. All you should think about is recreating that practice swing just let the ball get in the way. If you like take one last look at your target or landing area and try to see the shot you are about to hit.

In last month’s article I featured a picture of Ben Hogan at impact. Hogan made himself into one of best, if not the greatest, ball striker of all time. There are many stories about the unbelievable control he had over the golf ball. Hogan had a one plane swing. A one plane swing is a swing that has the shoulders and arms swinging on the same angle.

People really snatch at the ball in this situation and that tension destroys their chances of success. Feel the rhythm of the swing and take your time, rushing the swing itself will result in a mishap. Believe you can do it – this may require a little positive self talk. Just a thought If you have to carry a hazard with a longer shot take more than enough club to get you there. So often I see people under clubbing and more often than not the trouble is at the front of the green. If you think it is a good 7 iron then hit an easy 6. Golfers often club themselves on their best ever shot with a club, when actually the average distance they hit it is less. Fly the ball past the pin and you will find yourself closer more often. Aim to brush the grass as well as get the ball. As I mentioned before simply let the ball get in the way of a practice swing. Practice getting over hazards on the range… using the practice bunker or short targets and your imagination to put yourself in oncourse situations. This way you gain the confidence to achieve these shots on the course. Remember the more you think you will dunk the ball in trouble the more likely you are to do so … so get positive and trust yourself. If you end up in the hazard don’t allow yourself to get frustrated . Simply breathe in some more confidence and breathe out all that negativity. Go for it!! I am currently on maternity leave but will be back in the Summer. For more information and further tips visit my website at www.katiedawkinsgolf.co.uk

For example, if the shoulders point three feet outside of the ball at the top of the backswing, so will the arms. I never got to see Hogan play, unfortunately, but my old boss Walter Hitchcock - God rest his soul - did. He watched him play in the 1956 Canada Cup at Wentworth. One of the stories he told me was about a shot Hogan hit to the third green. The green then had a single step in it which was quite high. Anything slightly short would run back off the front of the green. If the pin was on the back tier, a high flying shot would have to be of perfect length to avoid disaster. Hogan hit a shot from the middle of the fairway which almost appeared to be topped because it went so low. The ball ran up the tier to within eight feet of the pin; many in the gallery thought that Hogan had hit a bad shot and got lucky. Walter knew differently, he had watched Hogan practicing that shot the day before! Hogan wasn’t always a machine; in the early part of his career he suffered with a hook. The hook was caused by a rapidly closing clubface at impact – a feeling that no doubt the hookers among you have felt. The rapid closing of the club was forced to happen because Hogan held the clubface very open until just before impact. So with the club very open and then closing very quickly through impact, Hogan’s timing had to be fantastic.

Golf Academy

If he got a little quick he could easily hit a hook. He became awesome when he learned to square clubface to the plane before impact. Because the club was less open just prior to impact it didn’t have to close so quickly and the timing element was taken away. Hogan then gained mastery of golf. The essence and the advantage of a One Plane Swing, is that with this type of action it is possible to get the clubface square to the path before and after impact, making it possible to play great golf consistently. That is why many of today’s stars, including Rory, swing using a one plane swing. The only drawback with a one plane swing is that it is quite technical and requires a good level of flexibility. Study the fantastic picture (above) of Hogan practicing at the 1956 Canada Cup. Note how low his hands are and that the clubface appears square to the plane and not open – pointing way right. Next month, the two plane swing. If you need any help with any department of your game, please don't hesitate to contact me either through my website: www.mbtourcoach.com or by telephone M: 07787 887578. Martin Butcher


Tee Times July06.indd 54

TT April Issue 167_Layout 1 24/03/2015 19:47 Page 47



East Horton Golf Club

The East Horton Golf Club Pro Shop offers ranges of equipment and clothing from many of the major manufacturers. Prices regularly checked against internet suppliers and we try to be competitive whilst offering professional advice, custom fit and trial facilities. Tuition is available both on the driving range and courses, for all ages and standards of golfers on an individual or small group basis.

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TT April Issue 167_Layout 1 24/03/2015 19:47 Page 48

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Tee Times Golf Magazine - April, 2015  

Tee Times Golf Magazine - April, 2015