Audi partner! Rod’s dreaming of UK golf triumph

Rod Brown with Audi's Scott Paddock
Rod Brown with Audi's Scott Paddock

Amateur golfer Rod Brown from Midhurst has qualified for an Audi quattro Cup UK regional final.

Brown narrowly won the Harwoods Audi Invitational at Cowdray Park with a score of 36 points in a Stableford-rules match over 18 holes.

The top finishers will pair up in a regional final at Walton Heath GC in Walton-on-the-Hill, Surrey, on August 6.

The competition was supported by Five Oaks Audi, Portsmouth Audi plus Southampton Audi and was one of 40-plus Audi quattro Cup invitational events being staged throughout the UK.

Seven regional finals are held in July and August with the top 18 pairs going forward in to the final at Bowood Golf & Country Club near Calne, Wiltshire, on September 4.

Ultimately two pairs representing Great Britain compete in the Audi quattro Cup world final at the Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai in December.

The Audi quattro Cup, being staged for the 24th year, is the world’s largest amateur golf competition with more than 100,000 players from over 50 countries competing for a place in the week-long world final.

COWDRAY PARK

A strong wind, allied to the rough, provided a tough test for Cowdray Park seniors in their latest medal competition for the Rolland Plate.

One man who made light of the conditions to record a stunning nett 63 was Jan de Vries to earn himself a handicap reduction. Second, and also earning a handicap reduction, came Nick Austin with a score of gross 78 (nett 66). Third was a resurgent Ian Ward with 68, on countback from Phil Pett. The only other player to beat par was Ian Goodall with 70.

Nine players recorded twos, while the seniors raised a further £122 for prostate cancer research courtesy of the the raffle and donations, with the raffle winners Mick Fillary and Mike Burgess.

Leading nett scores: 1 Jan de Vries 63; 2 Nick Austin 66; 3 Ian Ward 68 cb; 4 Phil Pett 68; 5 Ian Goodall 70; 6 Paul Chater 71 cb; 7 Mick Fillary 71; 8 Peter Laws 71; 9 Dave Lucking 72.

After a 4½-3½ win at Betchworth under the inspirational leadership of captain Brian Brockhurst, it was a daunting prospect when Brockhurst had to withdraw with a bad back for the home return, handing the role to stand-in match manager Derek Smith.

He proved an able substitute when he led his side to a resounding 6-2 win to complete a double.

After Derek Smith and Allen Sibley had started with a narrow one-up win for Cowdray, the following two matches went the way of the visitors and a surprise looked on the cards.

However Cowdray rallied to the cause to win the final five matches under Smith’s astute selection of the pairings.

Two matches were won by 6&4 – by Ken Newberry and David Manning and Peter Hallt and Wally Mitchell.

Next up for Cowdray’s seniors is another home match, against Bognor.

Results (Cowdray names first): Derek Smith & Allen Sibley beat Chris Jones & Doug Proctor 1up; Barry Overington & George Crouch lost to Peter Johnson & David Croll 2&1; Bill Hummerston & Dave Gaff lost to Tremaine MacCallum & Alf Andrews 3&2; Nick Austin & John Newman beat Alan May & Rod Stafford 2&1; Ken Newberry & David Manning beat Barry Holmes & Peter Holt 6&4; Phil Morris & Mike Hughes beat John Smith & Eric Reeve 3&2; Peter Hallt & Wally Mitchell beat Bill Crawshaw & Colin Tyler 6&4; Adam Gramston & Philip Singer beat John Rose & Robert Stafford 2 up.

On a brilliant day of unbroken sunshine, and the course prepared to perfection, the scene was set for the return match between Cowdray Park seniors and their visitors from Bognor.

With Bognor having won the first match 5½-2½, Cowdray fielded 14 of the 16 players involved in that match and were intent on reversing the result.

Cowdray match manager Tony Castley renewed his successful partnership with Phil Harrison – they didn’t allow opponents Alan Fitzgerald and Trevor Till the slightest chance of getting in the game.

The Cowdray pair were six up at the halfway stage and went on to win 7&6.

Dave Gaff and Nick Austin were made to go all the way by their opponents before they clinched victory by 2&1. The same score was secured by Mike Nobes and Ian Goodall to give the home side a 3-0 lead before Bognor’s first victory came via a 5&4 win from Brian Wolstencroft and David Turner.

The home side extended their lead courtesy of Alistair Proctor and Peter Laws, who gelled to win 6&5.

Roger Rose and Colin Tebbutt held off obdurate opponents to win 2&1 before Bognor claimed their second victory by the minimum margin of 1up, despite an eagle on the 13th from Mike Hughes.

Cowdray’s sixth and final win came from Trevor Edwards and Wally Mitchell, who closed things out with a 4&3 win, providing the home side with their second 6-2 home win of the week.

Results (Cowdray names first): Tony Castley & Phil Harrison beat Alan Fitzgerald &Trevor Till 7&6; David Gaff & Nick Austin beat Chris Hickling & Richard Hedge 2&1; Mike Nobes & Ian Goodall beat Roger Selway & Mel Henry 2&1; John Durrell & Peter Hallt lost to Brian Wolstencroft & David Turner 5&4; Alistair Proctor & Peter Laws beat Peter Collins & Hugh Diaper 6&5; Roger Rose & Colin Tebbutt beat Rob Redmond & Vic Ward 2&1; Jan de Vries & Mike Hughes lost to Frank Hodder & Allan Delves 1dn; Wally Mitchell & Trevor Edwards beat Clive Millett & John Woodhead 4&3.

COWDRAY PARK

A tilt at golfing glory awaits two local golfers and their PGA pro playing partners as they bid to reach the Lombard Trophy grand final being staged at Gleneagles – just three weeks before Europe and America meet there in the Ryder Cup.

Ashley Finch teed up a chance to tread the fairways of the King’s Course at the famous Scottish resort on September 3 and 4 when he won his club qualifying competition with a nett score of 63.

He and his Cowdray Park PGA professional Tim Allen advance to the regional final at Kingswood GC on June 26, where they will compete against up to 70 other clubs for the chance to secure one of 16 prized spots available for the 36-hole grand final.

Meanwhile David Chalmers and his Bognor PGA professional Matthew Kirby are on the same potential route to Gleneagles.

Chalmers won his club qualifying competition with a nett score of 64. He and Kirby now advance to the regional final at Camberley Heath GC on July 1 for a place in the grand final.

Finch is a 26-year-old engineer from Midhurst. He has been playing golf for three years and plays off a handicap of six.

Allen, 36, has been a professional at Cowdray Park for ten months.

Chalmers is a 64-year-old quality inspector from Bognors. He has been playing golf for 20 years and plays off a handicap of 13. Kirby, 39, has been a professional at Bognor for ten years.

Lombard, the UK’s largest asset finance provider which invests in local and regional business, has enjoyed a long association with the event, helping make it the biggest pro-am in Europe.

“We are delighted to be associated with the tournament, and wish all the regional finalists good luck as they try and win a place at Gleneagles,” said managing director of Lombard, Richard Hemsley.

The tournament, now in its 30th year, attracts entries from upwards of 700 clubs across Great Britain and Ireland.

The PGA National Pro-Am Championship has a total prize fund of £80,000, with the winning professional at the grand final taking home a cheque for £12,000.

BOGNOR

The Bert Reid Trophy and plate competitions were held at Bognor.

The Bert Reid is a medal competition over 36 holes, with prizes for best scratch and nett rounds. It is one of Bognor’s prestigious internal competitions and this year’s scratch winner was Andy Brown with a magnificent total of 143, five shots ahead of second place.

Results: Bert Reid Trophy scratch competition – 1 Andy Brown, 72 & 71, total 143; 2 Ryan Maskell 79 & 69, total 148 (cb); 3 Robert Holland, 74 & 74, total 148. Bert Reid Plate nett competition – 1 Ryan Maskell, nett 134; 2 Robert Holland 136; 3 Dan Maskell 139.

More than 50 players took part in the William Hardwicke Cup Stableford. On a difficult scoring day, the winner on countback was Paul Cooper with a nett 68.

Results: 1 Paul Cooper 81 (nett 68); 2 Dave Grover 74 (68); 3 Richard Hendrick 79 (70).

Bognor’s seniors played host to Petersfield and started brightly, winning the first four pairs. Petersfield won the next three and the final pairing was won narrowly by Bognor’s Derek Whiting and Roger Selway.

Results: Chris Hickling & Clive Millet won 6&4 against Mike Peyser & Ian Hewitt; Trevor Till & David Turner won 5&4, against Jim Lutner (partner failed to arrive); Peter Collins & Frank Hodder won 1 up against John Dunmall & Ron Gilbert, Mike Walsh & Richard Kaemena won 2&1 against David Kidd & Hugh Rosewarne; Hugh Diaper & David Hollis lost 4&3 to Jan Hanus & Barry Lillywhite, Barry Ingate & Vic Ward lost 4&3 to Mike Bee & Peter Ellam, Alan Delves & John Owen lost 1 down against Brian Phillips & Freddie French; Derek Whiting & Roger Selway won 2&1 against Paul Nickell & Derek Harrison.

AVISFORD PARK

Avisford Park seniors welcome Waterhall seniors on a breezy day with conditions ideal for golf.

The fairways were superb and the greens quick and true. Captain David Feist and partner Colin Payne were in imperious form, winning the first match by 5&3.

There were three other resounding victories – from Colin Robinson and Mike Gammon by 6&5; Peter Brown & Kevin Durban Jackson 5&4 and Ernie Rivett & David Farrer 5&4, which resulted in a 5-1 win for the home side.

The visitors were gracious in defeat and the teams look forward to a return match on the very hilly Waterhall course later in the year.

SUSSEX SCENE

A thrilling weekend of golf in the ladies’ county championship at East Brighton GC saw players from West Sussex GC win the championship, the plate and the Sussex Club Scratch Trophy.

Alice Barnes, just 22 and with a playing handicap of one, beat Emma Carberry (Highwoods) 6&4.

The plate final saw Daisy Kane of West Sussex beat Jelina Fenando (Pyecombe).

The county team for 2014 was announced by captain Sue Todd and includes Amber Cockram of Goodwood.

LITTLEHAMPTON

Eighty-four players representing more than 30 golf clubs competed for Littlehampton Golf Club’s 125th-anniversary mixed open.

With the sun shining and only a slight breeze off the sea, it could be argued that the course was at its most benign for this event and, it is true, some excellent scores were returned.

Cliff and Wendy Conway from Windlesham ran out winners with 44 points, followed by Stuart and Pat Wilson from Blackmoor in second. Third were Nigel and Yvette Charman from West Chiltington.

Cliff Conway praised the club and the organisers for staging a ‘seamless event on a course that was as near-perfect as it could be’.