As part of its ongoing 125th anniversary celebrations, County Armagh Golf Club granted members and visitors a rare opportunity to vie for the Centenary Obelisk Trophy on 25 August, when there was no shortage of hopeful contenders in the Open event sponsored by Irwin M&E Ltd.
Just shy of 200 players crammed onto the Cathedral City fairways, all intent on eventually emerging from battle in possession of the beautiful Tyrone Crystal replica of the course's landmark monument, which was created in the club's 100th year in 1993.
And when the scores were collated, a highly competitive Obelisk leaderboard showed at its summit Natty McGeown, whose wonderful nett 63 meant he would take home the ornamental spoils.
McGeown reached the turn in a mere 37 hits after an untroubled outward nine of three bogeys and half-a-dozen pars. Similar serenity would follow on the way home, where the neat-and-tidiness of four pars and four bogeys was upset only by the pleasant interruption of a birdie at the 15th.
County Armagh Golf Club Captain, Colm Shannon, and Open Centenary Obelisk Trophy competition sponsor, Keith Stewart, Managing Director of Irwin M&E Ltd, are pictured with prizewinners in the event to mark the club's 125th anniversary: (L-R) Philip Kelly, Andy Steed, Stephen Catterall, John Maguire, Natty McGeown, Eric Hamilton and Paddy Smyth
The resulting superb gross 76 earned Natty a new handicap of 11 and rendered him a delighted recipient of the Obelisk Trophy, which he collected at a Saturday evening prize-giving alongside Alexandra Mawhinney, winner of the Ladies' equivalent tournament.
Some words from the R&A:
“Players should play at a good pace ... It is a group's responsibility to keep up with the group in front.”
“‘Ready golf' is a commonly used term which indicates that players should play when they are ready to do so, rather than adhering strictly to the ‘farthest from the hole plays first' stipulation in the Rules of Golf ... there is strong evidence to suggest that playing ‘ready golf' does improve the pace of play.”
As regards pre-shot routines, “Did you know that if each player in a four-ball takes 5 seconds less to play each shot, the round time can be improved by over 25 minutes?”.
To enhance the enjoyment of all, CAGC encourages its members to be mindful of their pace of play and to feel free to play ‘ready golf'.
For more information on this subject, go to www.randa.org
County Armagh Golf Club's Ladies and Gents Open Stableford event on 12 August was sponsored by Gaffney Estate Agent and saw Rita Mone and Mark Frazer take up residency in the winners' enclosure.
Rita's remarkable 44-point scorecard showed a fantastic front nine of five bogeys and four pars, and then a birdie at the 15th that nestled nicely among seven further homeward bogeys. Rita was granted a new handicap of 18 as well as the Sunday honours on account of this splendid performance.
Rita Mone, winner of the Ladies' Gaffney Estate Agents Open Stableford competition, is presented with her prize by Gerry Gaffney. Also pictured are County Armagh Golf Club Captain, Colm Shannon, Lady Captain, Elizabeth Mawhinney, and second- and third-placed players, Una Cullinane and Alexandra Mawhinney.
Mark Frazer, winner of the Men's Gaffney Estate Agents Open Stableford competition, is presented with his prize by Gerry Gaffney. Also pictured are County Armagh Golf Club Captain, Colm Shannon, Lady Captain, Elizabeth Mawhinney, and other prizewinners Conor McGuigan and Philip Devlin.