The conditions just couldn’t have been any better than they were for the April Medal. Warm, sunny, very little breeze and very quick greens. Dave Copley took full advantage of the conditions to par the first hole, setting himself up for a good round, but just as you get comfortable the course jumps up and bites back. He double bogey’d the second hole after paying a visit to one of the green side bunkers. Eleven handicapper Dave then sorted out his concentration and went on a run dropping only three shots in the next fifteen holes.
He had been driving with great authority all day when inexplicably, he sliced his drive from the eighteenth tee almost putting it out of bounds. He might have been better off if he had, as his provisional ball was in a good position for three. Dave had to take a drop just to be able to chip over the corner bunker and ended up with a quadruple bogey to mar what should have been a fantastic round.
However, his score of 81-11-70 was just enough to take the win in division one and the overall medal win. He was very surprised as he really thought that he had blown it on the final hole. As a reward, he was cut to ten. Paul Pritchett off twelve was second with a nett seventy two and fourteen handicapper Terry Romeo was third with a nett seventy three. Ryan Tarrant and Men’s Captain Trevor Smith shared the lowest gross after both shot a gross seventy nine.
Peter Zimmer Smith won division two, he also had a nett seventy but lost out on count back to Dave Copley for the overall medal win. Peter, playing off fifteen, dropped only seven shots in the first fifteen holes but three double bogeys in the last three holes really spoilt his chance for the medal win. Peter said that he was very happy with his game up until the sixteenth when it all went horribly wrong, however, he did have the consolation of taking the lowest gross and moving into division one for the next medal after being cut to fourteen. David Burton off twelve took second place on count back from fourteen handicapper Chris Brand, both came in with a nett seventy one.
Former Ladies and League Team Captain Gilly Grant, playing off ten, was the class of the field in the Ladies Medal. Gilly played to her handicap to win the Medal in the ladies competition by two shots ahead of her nearest opponent, she shot a net seventy three. Current Ladies Captain Sheila Douty, playing off sixteen, took second with a nett seventy five and County player Sophie Beardsall playing off scratch was third with seventy six. Sophie also won the lowest gross.
A few days before the Medal, conditions were not quite so warm and the wind was howling for the eighth Rotary Club of Rutland annual golf day. Forty players in teams of four took part in the charity day which was organised by long standing loyal Greetham Valley member Bruce Strickland. Bruce said that he and his fellow Rotarians do several charity events throughout the year and usually raise between six and eight thousand pounds a year for charities. They also sponsor several young individuals such as a young writer, a young musician and a young cook as well as help with team building exercises. They also give money to the Mercy Ships charity.
The average score for the teams competing was around the ninety mark but the winners, using local knowledge, were a team from Greetham Valley, Graham Smith, Chris Wheatland, George Brand and Mick Peasgood. They came in with a staggering score of 117 to take the win. They were some twenty points better than Milestone Communications who were this year’s runners up. However, one of their players, Rob Smith, won both the Longest Drive and Nearest the Pin. The Ladies’ nearest the pin was won by Hazel Hinch.
Bruce said that in an age when people are finding it tough to make ends meet, he was overwhelmed at the generosity of the competitors, as £920 was raised for the charity pot.
The Midweek Stableford was also played on the Lakes course in somewhat chilly conditions. Ralph Clark had a fantastic round to win with a score of forty points, he was cut to thirteen; James Kearney took second place with thirty five points. Andy Hardy took third place on count back from Neil Chatterton and Robert Gray after they all came in with thirty four points.