Optimus Trophy brings cause for optimism by Bognor golfers

Bognor's winning scratch team
Bognor's winning scratch team
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Bognor’s scratch team won their first-round match in the Optimus Trophy at home to Hill Barn by an emphatic 11½-½ scoreline.

All eight players won their singles matches in the afternoon and there was a good mixture of experience and youth in the side.

There was a debut for Andy Weir and comfortable wins for Andrew Field and Jordan Vincent.

They now travel for a tough test at Ifield in the second round on May 11.

Pictured in their new team kit are, from left, Shaun Maskell, Rob Kissell, Andy Brown, Dave Hicks, Andy Weir, James Maclean, Jordan Vincent, Andrew Field.

* Bognor seniors visited Selsey on a fine spring day withvery little wind. The games were very competitive and Selsey just edged Bognor out with a 4-3 win. Ron Stevens, Bognor’s club vice-captain this year, eagled the 340-yard 15th hole.

Results: John King & Ron Stevens won 2 up, Ken Catt & Hugh Diaper won 5&3, Frank Hodder & Brian Madwick lost 3&2, Alan Fitzgerald & Barry Ingate lost 3&2, Steve King and Roger Horton lost 6&5, Mike Wadley & Derek Sheath won 4&3, Richard Hedge & Peter Collins lost 4&3.

Bognor’s mixed seniors hosted Blackmoor in their first match of the season. The game was played in an excellent spirit, with Bognor winning 6½-1½.

Winners for Bognor were Eileen and Jim Morris, Georgina and Peter McCormack, Margaret and Chris Martin, Kay and Robin Walker, Berit and Trevor Smallcorn and Pauline Littlejohns and Brian Poston. Pat Rishman and John King halved their game while Davina and Alan Rumsby were just pipped at the last.

Bognor’s mixed seniors entertained Ifield GC for the annual Bowring Trophy. In a very close-fought match in difficult blustery conditions, Ifield retained the trophy with a 4½-3½ win.

Winners for Bognor were Eileen and Jim Morris, Berit and Trevor Smallcorn and Joan Patridge and John Meek. Georgina and Peter McCormack halved their game. Sue and Rob Redman, Kay and Derek Dady, Kay and Robin Walker and Pauline Littlejohns and Brian Poston lost their games.

COWDRAY PARK

Cowdray Park seniors found themselves blown away by gale-force winds when they took to the fairways for their April Stableford.

Trolleys were blown over and players struggled to keep their feet, so strong were the winds at times. The difficulty of the conditions can be gauged by the fact that only two players out of 89 competing scored better than par.

Under such testing conditions it was obvious the cream would rise to the top, and so it proved with two single-figure handicappers, David Heard and Dave Lucking, filling two of the first three places. The other was Graham Thompson, rapidly making his mark in the seniors’ section.

Heard scored an excellent 37 points to win from Thompson, also on 37 points, who won division two. Lucking returned an excellent score of 35 for third overall to enhance his position in the Carter Trophy standings.

Third place in division one went to David Manning, who used his experience from the Scottish links courses to good effect, to return with 34 points.

The performance of the day came in division two from veteran Trevor Cousins, who claimed second spot with 34, showing his ‘younger’ colleagues how to work the ball around the course in windy conditions and claim his best finishing position for a long time.

Third on countback, in division two, was Mick Colban, also with 34.

The event raised £174 from the raffle, together with a further £10 from the captain and vice-captain’s challenge for the Mary How Trust.

Results: Div 1 - 1 David Heard 37pts (overall winner); 2 Dave Lucking 35; 3 David Manning 34 (cb). Div 2 - 1 Graham Thompson 37; 2 Trevor Cousins 34 (cb); 3 Mick Colban 34.

Cowdray Park seniors entertained Ifield on a bright and sunny day. The visitors were intent on reversing recent results at Cowdray as they fielded a strong side containing three single-figure handicappers, but Cowdray’s mid to high handicappers were up to the task and ran out 6-2 winners.

The match started disappointingly for the home side with an early reverse for their captain and vice-captain by two holes.

The scores were levelled in match two thanks to a stunning win by in-form duo Bill Hummerston and Brian Carpenter, who beat Chris Veal and Mike Lorol 6&5, while John Newman and Clive Strudwick followed up with a win by two holes.

Last-minute replacements Graham Evans and midweek winner Dave Darby outgunned their opponents Dave McHale and Brian Dodge with another 6&5 win.

The final match from the first tee went to Ifield to leave the score at 3-2.

All three matches teeing off at 17 were won by Cowdray Park to give an overall win by 6-2, beginning with another wide-margin win of 5&4 from David Tilley and George Crouch.

The final single-figure Ifield player, John Trusson, and partner John Mather, were defeated by one hole by Peter Laws and David Imlach, and the victory was completed with another one-hole win from Chris Hoare and Barry Overington to give Cowdray Park a comfortable 6-2 win.

Results (Cowdray names first): Allen Sibley & Brian Brockhurst lost to Paul Leppard & Richard Cowlard 2 dn; Bill Hummerston & Brian Carpenter beat Chris Veal & Mike Korol 6&5; John Newman & Clive Strudwick beat Jim Shelford & Norman Kennard 2 up; Graham Evans & Dave Darby beat Dave McHale & Brian Dodge 6&5; Richard Histed & Mike Pratt lost to Martin Wright & John Buck 2&1; David Tilley & George Crouch beat Gerry Clements & Dick Walters 5&4; Peter Laws & David Imlach beat John Trusson & John Mather 1 up; Chris Hoare & Barry Overington beat Martin Barham & Graham Cole 1 up.

* Cowdray ladies played in the Peugeot LGU Coronation Fours on one of the warmest days of the year. The winning pair of Polly Davenport and Mandy Lucking, with a score of 39 points, go through to the area finals in July at Cowdray Park, bidding to reach the grand final at St Andrews.

Results: 1 Polly Davenport & Mandy Lucking 39pts; 2 Janice Leath & Cath Yates 38; 3 Mary Morling & Margaret Hoare 38, 4 Barbara Smith & Imke Sanderson 38, 5 Lil Cummins & Debbie Cheasley 37.

AVISFORD PARK

Avisford Park seniors have enjoyed a steady start to the season with two home matches in beautiful spring weather on a course which has emerged brilliantly from such a difficult winter. On both occasions, the visitors congratulated the club for the playing conditions.

First visitors were Rookwood GC and the balance of the match seesawed back and forth and the visitors won the last match to ensure an honourable 3-3 draw.

Two matches ended all-square and all were tight finishes. Avisford were captained by the newly-elected skipper for 2013, Bob Boulter.

Nick Birch stood in as captain a week later and led the seniors to an excellent 4-2 win against the veterans from Foxbridge. There was some excellent scoring.

* The lone ranger competition was won by Chris May, Phil Pye, Ryan Blackwood and Glen Gibbs with a nett score of 124. Second were Chris Wall, Nick Finneran, Harvey Burchell and Stephen Porter with 125.

The midweek roll-up was won by Mark Heron with 38 points while the senior Stableford was won in division one by Barrie Goble with 35 points and in division two by Roger Lewis with 38.

The St George’s Day foursomes were won by Wilson Sharpe and Gery Maguire with 35 points. In second place on countback were Steve Redfern and Gary Steins. The nearest the pins were won on the 13th by David Fluke and on the 18th by Andy Adams.

Another senior Stableford saw Norman Turner win division one with 36 points and Malcolm Spiers take division two with 38 points.

The latest club Stableford was won in division one by Chris May with 40 points and in division two John Carter with 37.

The ladies’ Stableford saw Jayne Hardwell win with 27 points.

CHICHESTER

Chichester veterans continued their fine tradition in the annual Haygarth Trophy competition against sister club Hill Barn with a great victory away from home.

The trophy was donated by the clubs’ proprietor ten years ago and the aggregate scores from the home and away fixtures

determine the winner.
By winning this first leg by 5-3, Chichester have gone a long way to retaining the trophy, which they have never lost. Captain Robert Stainsby with his partner Ken Jackson led the way, winning 3&2, and after a good fightback by Hill Barn’s later order, the contest was decided by a resounding victory by 8&7 for Dave Monkton and Dieter Matthey.

Results: Robert Stainsby and Ken Jackson won 3&2; Nick Hobbs and Roy Chandler won 2 up; Harry Harper and Peter Green won 4&3;

Campbell Goldsmid and Gordon Williams lost 4&3; Rob Baldwin & Mike Chapman won 6&4; Brendan Sharpe & Bruce Santern lost 3&2; Bill Martin & Eric Bourne lost 6&5; Dave Monkton & Dieter Matthey won 8&7.

There was a warm welcome for Brighton & Hove as they arrived to play their inaugural fixture against Chichester vets on the Cathedral course.

The early matches were very close but in the end the home team ran out comfortable 5-1 winners.

The course, new to many of the Brighton players, proved difficult though as the fixture continues and they become more familiar with it, results may get closer. Chichester are looking forward to a tough match on the Brighton course later in the year.

Results: Robert Stainsby & Bev Shrives-Wrist won 2&1; Nick Hobbs & Diieter Matthey won 2 up; Jim Robertson & Campbell Goldsmid won 2&1; Mike Chapman & Ron Cummins lost 1 down; Bill Martin & Ken Hart won 5&3; Brendan Sharpe & Roger Fletcher won 5&4.

* Chichester ladies played the Roy Keep spring pairs competition with a good field of 40 on a warm and sunny day which aided good scoring.

The winning pair came in with a score of 41 points - namely Yvonne Dunckley and Sue Bond.

GOODWOOD

The James Braid-designed Downs course at Goodwood has again been formally ranked by Golf World magazine as one of England’s top 100 Golf Courses.

The 7,104-yard course was ranked 72nd in this second edition of the top 100 of English golf courses by the publication widely regarded as the most authoritative and definitive guide to first-class golf in the UK.

England currently has around 1,950 golf courses, putting the historic Downs course in the top five per cent of courses in the country.

Each course was judged by an esteemed panel of golf experts including European Tour players, golf journalists, golf course architects, golf photographers and readers, assessing a number of factors including visual appeal, routing, conditioning and historical significance by this independent judging panel.

The Downs course ranked higher than some of the best-known names in golf including Stoke Park, The Wisely and Woburn.

Stuart Gillett, general manager of Golf At Goodwood, commented: “We are delighted to move up Golf World’s rankings and it is a credit to our dedicated greenkeeping team coupled with our long term golf investment plans that we are now being recognised as one of the leading golf venues in England.”

The Downs course, which celebrates its centenary next year, was originally designed by five-times Open champion Braid, a legend of the Royal & Ancient game.

In 2006 more than £2m was spent remodelling the course including the creation of six new holes so that the historic layout provided a challenge for the modern game while retaining the essential character of Braid’s original concept.

Since re-launching in 2006, Goodwood has pioneered a new form of credit membership which has proved to be incredibly popular and created pay-as-you-go golf.