For once the weather forecast for Rutland was absolutely correct! Saturday, the first day of the two day 0-18 Club Championships, was the hottest day of the year so far, thirty degrees and counting. A field of 120 took to the fairways but at the end of the first day’s play, only those within ten shots of the leader would make the cut to qualify for the second day.
Nineteen year old plus one handicapper Jordan Burdall shot a gross 70 which was the same as he scored on day one last year, he also won the lowest gross. Last year’s winner, two handicapper Trevor Smith, was in second place on 75, Ben Easson off five lay just one shot behind Trevor in third. Ryan Tarrant, Graham Smith, Ray Gladwinfield and Alan Bennett were all tied on 77.
The nett competition was very tight, Steve Anderson and John Sparks were first and second on countback with a 68, Dave Copley was one shot behind them and James Kearny was just one shot behind Dave. Ray Gladwinfield stood in fifth place leading a gaggle of six players on 71.
Day two dawned as a much cooler day, some six or seven degrees lower than the scorcher that wrecked many a competitor’s dream the day before. In the gross competition, Jordan went into day two last year with a four shot lead only to lose it to a marauding Trevor Smith. Jordan wasn’t keen to repeat that experience, he decided to ditch the driver and rely on his well honed course management. However, this still gave him a share of the lowest gross for the day, 74. Ben Easson playing in the second to last group ahead of Jordan, also adopted a similar strategy, he used his driver on the par fives but teed off with his three iron on all of the par fours. He also shot a gross 74. Andrew Frisby was just one shot behind with a gross 75, Adam Clegg recovered from an 82 on day one and shot a 76. Nick Cunnington had a slightly better day, he shot a 75.
The outcome was a win for Jordan Burdall with a total gross of 144. Jordan said that he had planned well for this year’s competition and was extremely pleased to have won it six shots clear of his nearest competitor. He would have liked to have gone for the course record but in the heat he decided that one thing at a time was a much better plan. Jordan is now Club Champion and will be presented with the President’s Trophy at the Club prize night in November. Ben Easson took second with150 and Andrew Frisby was third just three shots further back. Club Captain Trevor Smith, who had fought so gallantly last year to take the win, had a nightmare with his usually reliable putter, he finished in fourth on 156, Nick Cunnington was one shot behind Trevor to take fifth.
The nett competition, for the Cunningham Cup, was won by Ben Easson with a brilliant 140. Ben said that his tactics on day two really paid off, his score was two shots better than on day one and he felt more confident having a full shot into the greens. Dean Greetham off eight took second with 142. Iain Bain and Peter Zimmer Smith were separated on countback as they both scored 144, Iain took third and Peter fourth. Andrew Frisby took fifth on countback from Simon Bateman, Graham Smith, Ray Gladwinfield and Dave Copley, they all shot 145.
Bearing in mind how much the weather played a part over the two days of the competition, the Ladies, who will be playing their Club Championship (0-24 handicaps) next weekend, will be hoping for good weather without the abnormal heat the men experienced on Saturday. Their championship is played over two rounds on the same day. Can anybody stop scratch player Sophie Beardsall from winning a Club record ninth win?
Lizzie Taylor off twenty one won the Ladies Midweek Medal with a brilliant net 68. Chris Slattery took second place on countback from two handicapper Emma Tipping who also won the lowest gross, they both came in with a nett 69.
Brian Parker won the Seniors’ July Medal and the first division with a nett 69. Eight handicapper Ken Porter was placed second on countback with a nett 72, he also won the lowest gross. Nick Meyer, Robert Gray and Terry McNulty were placed third to fifth respectively, they all shot a nett 72.
In Division two the spoils went to George Cooper for his nett 71 on countback from Stuart Dodd. Charles Guttridge was third on 72.