‘Tom and Gary' sounds like a low-budget imitation of a much-loved children's cartoon. Fitttingly then, Tom Donnelly and Gary McAleavey each played a game of cat and mouse with their rivals before securing September competition victories at County Armagh Golf Club.
On Saturday 29 September, Gary sealed the top honours with a peerless 40-point performance in which he birdied both the 2nd and the 7th before romping to the tape with five pars in the last five holes.
McAleavey's closest challenger was overall runner-up, Johnny Palmer, who had collected four points after the opening hole — when he pulled a birdie out of St Brigid's Well — and eventually signed for an excellent total of 39.
County Armagh Golf Club
You will work under the direction of the Head Greenkeeper, deputise in his absence and be responsible to ensure the course and facilities are maintained to a first class playing condition. You must be a good team worker, have hands-on experience, preferably in golf course maintenance and be highly motivated. The successful candidate will be committed to their chosen career, dedicated, possess a flexible approach to work, have good communication skills and a keen eye for detail.
Candidates should be forward thinking, enthusiastic and have:
• A minimum of 3 years Parkland Course Management experience, particularly in a golf club setting;
• Minimum requirement of level 2 Greenkeeping;
• A knowledge of Health and Safety regulations;
• Experience of using greens, fairway and rough mowers, as well as other machinery used in the maintenance of a golf course;
• A flexible approach to working patterns;
• PA1/ PA6 Pesticide Certificates (PA2 desirable);
• An ability to work without supervision, within a small team and at weekends; and
• A full driving license required
This is an excellent opportunity for the successful candidate to further develop their green keeping career with a competitive salary and golfing privileges.
The annual Past Captains’ competition was contested recently over two legs: the first at Ballymac, and the second at home at CAGC.
The eventual winner was Walter Neville and a good time was had by all. Well done, Walter!
Summer is well and truly behind us but thankfully the relatively dry autumn has helped us to extend the season.
The course has been in great condition this year, which is thanks to careful planning and the hard work of the staff and Greens Convenor.
To keep the course playable through the winter and to ensure we prepare well for next season Council has agreed an autumn and winter maintenance and improvement programme. In addition to the normal greens and fairway maintenance programme, work will be carried out on bunkers, paths, drains, woodland areas and sanding of the fairways.
On Thursday 4 th October a large number of ladies played the last weekly competition of 2018 in the form of a 15 and 9-hole stableford in which Gladys Villiers emerged as the winner with a very good score of 32 points.
Lady Captain Elizabeth Mawhinney with winner of end of season competition Gladys Villiers and other prize winners.
Before presenting the prizes, Lady Captain Elizabeth wished everyone well in the winter league and reminded them of the AGM on Thursday 29th November. Elizabeth had visited former Lady Captain Sadie Scott to mark her 90 th birthday and leave gifts on behalf of the Ladies Branch.
County Armagh Golf Club's 2017 Golfer of the Year is in rude health once again as we near the conclusion of the current campaign. Shea Smyth's two-under-par round on 23 September meant he collected first prize in a Sunday Stableford competition.
Shea dispensed with the 6th and 7th holes using just four strokes, as he followed up a spectacular eagle two on Crossways by mining a birdie from the Quarry. Another birdie out at the 12th and 13 pars elsewhere brought Smyth to a majestic gross 68, and the accruing 40 points kept him one ahead of the day's overall runner-up, Mark Frazer.
In recording 39 points, six-handicapper Mark recaptured something like the form that saw him to Gaffney Open glory in August. His classy 74-shot outing, although finishing with a sad six, also featured the happier times of 13 pars and a superb birdie at the Lakes.
Back-to-back Saturday tournament victories at County Armagh Golf Club are a rare thing indeed, but that was exactly the feat completed by Michael Curley last month.
No doubt still feeling the glow from his stunning nett 62 and Henry White Open triumph on 15 September, another super show on 22 September saw Curley reach a terrific 41-point total and the summit of that day's Club Stableford leaderboard.
Michael was four over par through five holes of a torpid opening, but he sprung into life just then and played beautifully thereafter. The now single-figure handicapper eventually put his name to a gross 75 that was boosted by a pair of birdies on the double green that houses the 8th and 11th holes.
The 4th hole at County Armagh Golf Club, par 4, index 5, the Old Third.
Closest to matching the winning tally was Beechie Hughes, who racked up eight pars on his way to a wonderful 40 points that earned him the overall runner-up prize as well as a new handicap of 16.
Kenny Spence was recently presented with the historic Tuesday Cup trophy, a fitting reward for his consistency in the long-running 18-week eclectic competition sponsored by Traynors Motor Store.
In the event which is traditionally contested from the beginning of April until the end of August, Spence's final tally of nett 41 meant he scored a comfortable four-shot victory ahead of runner-up Paul McCreesh. The remaining slots on the nett podium were filled by Philip Dowey, Kevin Smyth and Andy Conn respectively.
Kenny Spence, County Armagh Golf Club's Tuesday Cup Champion 2018, is presented with the trophy by Club Captain, Colm Shannon. They are pictured alongside the nett runner-up, Paul McCreesh.
With the weather remaining fair and the course in good condition, it has been decided to continue with qualifying competitions for as long as possible.
The coming weekend's competitions will now be as follows:
Saturday 6 October: Club Stableford, white tees, preferred lies fairways only.
Sunday 7 October: Club Stableford, white tees, preferred lies fairways only.
A superb two-over-par round from Philip Russell on 16 September rendered him the deserving victor of a stableford competition at County Armagh Golf Club.
Back-to-back bogeys at the 4th and 5th were buffered on either side by seven pars, as Philip reached the turn in just 36 blows. And he needed only the same amount again on a tremendous back nine, where another pair of consecutive dropped shots were cancelled out by birdies at Ballyheridan and Beresford.
The resultant 42-point total clipped returning member Philip's handicap to seven and defeated on a break of tie Joe Rooney, who filled second spot after blasting a characteristically sensational gross 66 that featured a nap-hand of birdies.
Ryan McVeigh was just one point shy of that mark and prevailed in category 1 through a marvellous gross 75 that was kick-started with a birdie at the 3rd. Meanwhile, runner-up among the low men was the evergreen Tom Calvert, whose nine pars, eight bogeys and one birdie represented an accomplished day's work.
Set in the magnificent Georgian palace demesne of Archbishop Robinson with panoramic views of the historic city and its surrounding countryside, County Armagh Golf Club is surely one of the most picturesque golfing locations in Ulster.
Freestanding oaks, chestnuts, beech trees and ash trees line the impressively manicured fairways, with strategically placed bunkers leading to superb greens, many of which are defined by lush floral displays which blossom beautifully in spring and summer. And let's not forget Armagh's two stunning Cathedrals, which provide a truly enchanting backdrop to any round.
County Armagh Golf Club is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year and it has been a memorable few months for a club that combines a colourful history with a great love of the game and an admirable community spirit.