Mason and Fry triumph on Captain’s Day

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At mid-day last Sunday, Flempton Golf Club held a shot-gun start for their Captain’s Charity Day in bright sunshine.

By contrast, at the British Open Championship at Royal Troon, on-course Sky TV commentator Howard Clark described weather conditions there as “horrific”.

The wind was gusting to 30mph, it was raining and only 14c, although the weather did improve for the leaders later.

Flempton and Troon may not have experienced similar weather conditions, but both courses are ruthlessly defended by their bunkers.

Royal Troon is known for its brutal, deep, vertical faced bunkers and while Flempton’s bunkers are of the more traditional design, there are 80 of them to navigate on the nine-hole course.

Richard Mason and Chris Fry did manage to avoid most of the sand traps on their way to winning the modified Texas Scramble format main competition.

Chris Springthorpe and Rupert McCallum were runners-up with Brian Field and Jon Dunn third. Club Captain, Andrew Long, greeted the players with refreshments mid-round, outside the club house, where they also took part in a putting competition prior to completing their Texas Scramble.

The captain’s nominated charity this year, at Flempton GC, is the East Anglian Air Ambulance.

Bury Golf Club

Bury GC’s 2016 club champion Michael Gee is still in fine form, winning the club’s Junior Mid-Week Medal last week (72-4=68) and coming third on Sunday in the Men’s Medal (75-4=71).

The winner on Sunday was Sam Ellis (73-6=67) with Scott Rutterford runner up (78-11=67).

Also on Sunday, Bury GC’s Hambro team won away at Southwold GC by eight holes.

They are now through to the semi-finals, where they will face local rivals Stowmarket, at a neutral venue on Sunday, August 14.

Club championship runner-up, Dan Smailes, partnered his father, Phil, to victory in The Basket Trophy knockout final last week.

Brian Wiltorn led the way for the second week running, beating James Edgar on count-back in The Suffolk GC’s mid-week competition with 36 stableford points.

Wiltorn leads the club’s mid-week Order of Merit table with 79 points, followed by Ivan Snelling with 66 and Jim Chapman with 59.

At the weekend, Simon Ferrari, who recently rejoined The Suffolk, showed he still knows his way around the course by winning the July Medal with a nett 66.

Brian Hay was second with a nett 69 followed by Alf Jackson with 71. Jackson is in pole position in the weekend Merit table with 22 points followed by Hay with 19.5.

Experienced local golfer Paul Kent has joined Andy Goodridge’s Pro coaching team at Bury Golf Range.

Kent has had experience on tour practising and playing with top competition professionals including Greg Norman, Colin Montgomerie, Josè Maria Olazabal, Ian Baker Finch and many others.

He has played in three consecutive Open Championships and made the cut at Royal Lytham, finishing 46th.

Kent also trained under world-renowned coach Alex Hay and has worked with other leading coaches including Dennis Pugh, Bob Torrance and Tommy Horton.

He has attended tour sanctioned training weeks and also the world famous Australian Institute of Sport, where he experienced first-hand the methodology of top coaches, psychologists and fitness trainers.

Kent, Robin Mann and Goodridge are all available for golf coaching by appointment.

Thetford Golf Club

There were some very low scores at the Lombard PGA Pro-Am regional final held at Thetford last week, with a thrilling finish, as the defending champions were pipped.

Stowmarket’s Jon Markham and John Jameson set the early pace with a terrific better-ball score of 62.

That is often a winning score, but with fine weather and the greens in great condition, it was not quite enough as they finished third.

Barnham Broom’s Alan Hemsley and Paul Dodman came in with a 61, playing the back nine in nine under par.

Nobody could challenge that until one of the later starters, defending champion Jason Levermore of Channels, who was partnered this year by Paul Castle had a 61, but they could not beat the Barnham pair’s back nine.

That meant Hemsley and Dodman won on count-back to earn a place in the £41,500 prize money Grand Final, at the Pestana Golf Resort in Vila Sol, in Portugal in September.

Thetford GC professional Stuart Smith, partnering former pro Ross Sanford, came in with 67, while his predecessor, Gary Kitley, was one shot better with his partner Daniel Fish.

On Thursday, Thetford GC hosted their annual Seniors Am-Am and this year’s winners came from the hosts

Steve Campbell, Martin Jackson, Phil Halford and Steve Cobb were the first team out and their score of 83 points held up to win by two. John Banks (Bury St Edmunds) won the nearest the pin prize at the third and Steve Fisher (Sutton Bridge) won the prize at the 16th.