Tournament Reports 2006
NEW YEAR’S EVE MIXED PAIRS STABLEFORD – 31/12/06
This popular event proved to be as popular as ever with a good turnout of 15 mixed pairs entered in the tournament, along with 5 non-mixed pairs for which a separate prize would be played for.
The highest placed non-mixed pair, with a reasonable score of 36 stableford points, was Kevin Higgins and Paul Cowgill.
As the results were collated, 4 teams appeared well clear of the rest. With 40 points Freddie Beames and Wikkie de Graaf were squeezed out of the prizes by George and Marianne Manus and Steven and Elaine Gray who both recorded 41 points and took 3rd and 2nd places respectively.
With a score of 41 stableford points, putting them well clear of the rest of the field, the 2006 champions were Patrick and Sue Wood.
CHRISTMAS PAIRS STABLEFORD – 28/12/06
Similar to the Boxing Day tournament with the only difference being that scoring was now back to the more familiar Stableford points system.
Late entrants to the tournament, Steve Morris and Peter Barry, returned a better ball score of 36 points to take 3rd position by a comfortable 7 points. However, they were 2 points shy of joining the top 2 teams in a countback to decide the champions. With 38 points, the husband and wife team of Brent and Brenda Clark-Whittle were narrowly beaten to the title by Roger Butters and Michael Wherlock.
BOXING DAY PAIRS MEDAL – 26/12/06
With just 6 pairs overcoming the excesses of Christmas Day it was decided that only the top 2 teams would receive prizes. Playing an unusual format for Desert Springs, it was thought a score around level par may be good enough to take top spot in the better ball medal tournament. Indeed, when Terry Betts and David Lay returned a score of 70 (1-under par) it was expected they would be in the prizes. However, 2 teams then returned brilliant scores of 65 (6-under par). Using a countback, Alejandro Martinez Arasso and Martin Martinez were beaten by the winning pair of Dennis Stafford and Alfonso Miguel Sanchez Garcia.
CHRISTMAS DAY 9-HOLE FUN COMPETITION – 25/12/06
Nine brave golfers rose from their beds on Christmas morning to meet at the Golf Academy at 9am for the pre-golf challenge. Namely, three shots to a target green 100 metres away with the forfeit for each missed shot being at shot of cactus liquor! A bottle of strange green liquid later and some hangovers positively topped up, the 9-hole competition could begin.
Neither the shots of liquor nor the fresh morning temperature dulled the scores of the top 3 players. Tying on 19 stableford points Richard Betts and Paul Murphy were separated by a countback leaving them in 3rd and 2nd places respectively. The winner of the nine hole event, by 2 points, was Paul Taylor with an impressive 21 points.
THE MADERA VERDE CUP - 9/12/06
After being previously postponed, the Madera Verde Cup finally took place on 9th December at the Desert Springs Resort and Golf Club. The 32 entrants were organized into teams of four to play a Texas Scramble competition over 18 Holes of the Indiana Course.
As the results were calculated, the top 3 teams were all very close but were well clear of the rest of the field. In third position with a score of 60.8 were Rosa Perez, Emilio Romeu, Ana Fernandez de Tejada and Francisco Sanchez. Taking second place Hector Llanza, Jose Luis Fortea, Pedro Zugasti (Director of APAS) and Anthony Brooks (Indiana Golf Course Superintendent) recorded a fantastic score of 58.6. However, their confidence of victory was taken away by just 0.6 of a stroke! The inaugural champions of the Madera Verde Cup, with a score of 58.2, were Pilar Perez de la Senra, Silvia Plaza, Jose Luis Cañedo and Rafael Ortiz.
THE PRESIDENT'S CUP - 11/11/06
The 46 players that competed in this years President's Cup included all 3 previous winners, namely Tony Kelly (2003), John Rosenthal (2004) and Paddy Carroll (2005) so there was everything to play for.
As the results were compiled after all players had completed their round, Angel Gomez Agun took 3rd place with a total of 38 Stableford points but it was 2 of the previous winners who held the top two places. With 39 points, John Rosenthal claimed the runner-up spot. The 2006 champion and 2nd time winner with an incredible 43 points was Anthony Kelly who, in the absence of the President Stephen Hitchins, was presented with the trophy by Club Captain, Pat Craig.
PROFESSIONAL’S CHALLENGE CUP – 29/10/06
17 groups queued up to take on the professional pairing of Simon Coaker and Colin White in the 2nd annual playing of the Professional’s Challenge Cup; a tournament where the only objective is to beat the better ball stableford score of the pro’s! In last years tournament only 3 pairings, including overall winners Graham and Judith Beeton, managed to bet Simon and Colin, who this year were determined to keep a ‘clean sheet’.
The consensus amongst most members (especially a certain Mr. Mike Thorpe!) , and the subject of one or two friendly bets, was that the pros would be very lucky to manage more than 38 points. Oh what faith….!
Playing alongside Simon and Colin in the first group, Alan Waldron and Chris Higgins witnessed some great golf shots as the pros recorded 21 points for the front 9 holes. Alan and Chris managed to scramble 21 points to match the pros but faded over the second 9 holes to finish with a total of 39 points which would eventually leave them in a tie for 4th place with Fergus Smyth and Tom Kennedy. Kirby and Sue Garrod took 3rd place with a total of 42 points.
Mike Thorpe and playing partner Laurie Meldrum were very confident as they walked into the clubhouse that their score of 43 points would be enough to take the trophy and seemed a little surprised when it emerged that the pros had managed to gain a further 22 points on the back 9 to also record a total of 43 points.
Splitting the teams on their scores over the last 6 holes, 1 team had 13 points whilst the other, victorious, team had 15 points. Winners of the 2006 Professional’s Challenge Cup and now holders of their own trophy, Simon Coaker and Colin White.
THE DESERT CLASSIC - 21+22/10/06
A strong field of 37 players ventured onto the Indiana Course on Saturday morning for the first round of this 2-day event. Although it is often said that a tournament does not start until the back nine holes on the final day, an ominous sign appeared on the leader board after the first 18 holes; defending champion, Hugh Mullins was in the lead. With a fantastic score of 43 points he led Paddy Carroll by 4 points, with John Rosenthal and George Manus a further 2 points back.
On Day 2, Paddy could only manage to card 34 points to give a tournament total of 73 points which was equalled by 'Mr Consistent' John Rosenthal with a second round score of 36 points. However, the inevitable became reality when the best score of the day was posted by the overnight leader. With a total score of 80 points (43 + 37) Hugh Mullins defended his title in style to lift the Desert Classic trophy for the second time.
AUTUMN TROPHY - 27/10/06
The beginning of the week had seen some of the heaviest rain of the year at the Resort and Friday morning dawned overcast with a little rain still falling. However, as the players made their way round the course the weather began to brighten up and so did the golf of one particular competitor.
Three players returned scores of 35 points but with a better back nine score, Mike Thorpe took 3rd place. Second place was claimed by Alastair Robertson who carded 36 points but the deserved winner was the lowest handicap golfer in the field, Kristopher Gray. Playing off a handicap of 2, Kris shot an incredible gross 64 to give him 44 Stableford points and the title of Autumn Trophy Champion 2006 by a massive 8 points!
THE CONSTITUTION CUP - 08/10/06
With many of the participants of the Desert Springs Ryder Cup being understandable tired after their victory, the field for the Constitution Cup was smaller than usual but still produced some golf results. The prize table had only trophies for the leading man and lady, so for this tournament it really was a case of 'you get nothing for coming second'.
Visiting Pedro Garcia Mora managed to beat all members in the field to claim the Men's Constitution Cup with 33 points whilst club member Lynne Taylor lifted the Ladies Constitution Cup by playing to her handicap and scoring a very good 36 points.
THE DESERT SPRINGS RYDER CUP - 6th & 7th October, 2006
Thursday 5th October saw the arrival at Desert Springs Resort of the Ryder Cup team of 12 golfers from Redbourn Golf Club and they were here on a mission: To take on, and beat, 12 members of Desert Springs Golf Club in the inaugural Desert Springs Ryder Cup! The tournament commenced on Friday 6th with 6 matches, played in a Fourball better-ball format, and concluded on Saturday 7th, with the 12 singles matches. A total of 18 points were available and a score of 9∏ points was required to secure the overall victory.
When both teams met on Thursday evening, the Redbourn team members were not holding back about their confidence that they would win the event, but, come Friday afternoon, they were shocked into temporary silence as the scoreboard showed Desert Springs had taken a comprehensive Day 1 lead by 5∏ points to ∏ point. That evening, both teams refueled in the Crocodile Club, with the low handicap team from Redbourn regaining its confidence that it could turn things around in the following day’s singles matches. This was a big ask, requiring 9 points out of a possible 12, especially when compared to Desert Springs, which required only a further 4 points to claim the trophy!
Redbourn put up a good fight on Saturday, but, thanks not least to the 3 ladies on the Desert Springs team, who did not lose a match, Redbourn could not make up the ground lost on the previous day. Wikkie de Graaf won 9 & 8, Christine Cole won 3 & 2 and Marianne Manus, coming from dormi 5 down to secure a ∏ point, pushed Desert Springs towards their final tally of 14 points.
All agreed that most matches had been very close, but there was no disguising the fact that, with a final scoreline of 14 points to 4, the home team had won the 2006 Desert Springs Ryder Cup pretty convincingly and Club Captain, Pat Craig, was more than happy to lift the trophy on behalf of Desert Springs at the Gala Dinner. Redbourn have vowed to return next year for a second attempt at the trophy, but with the team likely to consist of many of the same players, I don’t think we need to start panicking just yet…!
THE SUMMER CHALLENGE CUP – 13/08/06
The Summer Challenge Cup had been won in its first 2 years by Dennis Stafford who now had the chance to go for the ‘treble’! However, with Dennis unavailable to play this year, 2006 would see a new name on the impressive crystal trophy and with 26 entries competing, it would not be an easy task.
The event was dominated by the Spanish players and the Ladies section particularly so by the younger generation with all podium positions going to girls under 18 years old. A count-back was required to separate second and third place between sisters, Julia and Carmen Alcolea Sanchez, who both had 37 points; Julia just having the edge with a better back 9 holes. The winner of the Ladies section with an unmatchable 41 points was 10-year old Marta Martin Garcia.
In the Men’s section, a 4 way count-back saw Guillermo Julia Nuñez take 3rd position with a total of 36 points. Pablo Ereño Iribarren was clear in 2nd place with 41 points. The winner of the Men’s section and the overall champion, beating Marta by a single point, with 42 points was Kevin Higgins. Kevin saw his handicap drop from 18.0 to 15.8!
DESERT SPRINGS OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP – 18 & 19/07/06
The first day of this 2-day event saw some fantastic scores of 39 and 42 stableford points accumulated over the Indiana Course. Father and son, José Arcos Usero and Alejandro Arcos Campillo both recorded 39 whilst Roger Andrews took an early lead with 42 points.
The weather conditions on day 2 remained standard for this area of Spain, hot and dry with just a light wind so it was felt that eight handicapper and over-night leader, Roger Andrews, would ‘run away’ with the tournament. A disappointed Roger could only manage 30 points to give a total of 72 for the event and was joined on this total by Sue Wood who had the best score on day 2 of 40 points. With the champion being decided on the best second round it was Sue Wood who lifted the Desert Springs Open Championship Trophy, her first trophy at the golf club.
SPRING CUP – 21/05/06
Following the previous days’ team event it was a return to individual play for the Spring Cup. With handicaps ranging from 5 to 29 and players receiving their full handicap allowance, the trophy was very much ‘up for grabs’.
Current Club Captain, Pat Craig, returned an impressive score of 36 points but was squeezed out of 3rd place by Yvonne Morrison who, also with 36 points, had a better back nine score. Two points clear of Yvonne and taking 2nd place with 38 points was Michael Neilan but a further 2 points clear of Michael, with a great total of 40 points from a handicap of 8, was the tournament winner Roger Andrews.
COPA DESAFÍO LOCAL – 20/05/06
14 players on each team!
18 holes over the Indiana Course!
Best 10 scores from each team to be combined to find the best local team!
The Copa Desafío Local, or Inter-Club Challenge, was designed to encourage interaction between golfers from local clubs and societies in a fun and competitive event.
As the players from Desert Springs Golf Club, Lorca Golf Society, Badgers Golf Society and Cortijo Grande Golf Club started play at the sound of the 9am shotgun the previously not so important matter of winning suddenly became more important. Team pride was now at stake!
As the players finished their rounds and returned to the comfort of the Clubhouse, the mood was definitely one of friendly rivalry with the usual tales of ‘if only....’ but nothing could change the results now. With a ’10 best’ total of 294 points, Cortijo Grande Golf Club found themselves propping up the leader board. A total of 310 points put Badgers Golf Society into 3rd place to leave the battle for the trophy between Desert Springs Golf Club and Lorca Golf Society. Although both teams had an individual with a score of 38 points, Trinidad Eduardo Fernandez Cano for Lorca and Alfonso Miguel Sanchez Garcia for Desert Springs, there was a huge difference of 31 points between the teams’ total scores.
With 319 points, Lorca Golf Society was named as runners-up, leaving Desert Springs Golf Club to lift the trophy as winners of the inaugural Copa Desafío Local with a total of 350 points.
OPEN PAIR’S TOURNAMENT – 07/05/06
Seven pairs entered the tournament, played in a betterball stableford points format with each player receiving ¾ of their handicap allowance plus the slope rating of the Indiana Course.
This format is all about working well as partners – when 1 partner has a bad hole, the other plays well! One player in particular played extremely well on the 2nd Hole, ‘Gulch’. Wikkie de Graaf recorded a hole-in-one at the Par 3 which gave, with stroke allowance, a nett zero for five stableford points. Congratulations to Wikkie!
Some good team scores were returned for this tournament, with the top 3 teams all managing scores of 37 points and more. 3rd place went to José Ramos Jerez and José Arcos Usero with a score of 37 points, beating Dennis Stafford and Alfonso Miguel Sanchez Garcia with a better ‘back nine’ score 18 points. With 40 points, Graham Jefferies and Kevin Manser stood alone in 2nd place whilst with 41 points, helped by 5 points on the 2nd hole, Wikkie de Graaf and Freddie Beames took victory by a single point.
MAY DAY STABLEFORD – 01/05/06
Bank Holiday Monday, ‘May Day’ in the UK and the ‘Fiesta del Trabejo’ (Worker’s Day) in Spain, attracted 21 players to compete in the May Day Stableford tournament held on the Indian Course. With players from Spain, England, Holland and Italy taking part, the tournament had a very international field.
As the players started to return to the clubhouse, a crowd began to form at the bar, all waiting for one particular player. News had spread quickly that John Fry had managed an ace at the 160 metre par three 12th Hole, ‘Chiquita’, and the tradition of the lucky individual buying a round of drinks was being eagerly awaited.
Unfortunately for John, his hole-in-one was not enough to lift his score into the final top three prize positions. Third place was taken by Diego Garcia Caballero with a score of 37 points, 3 points behind the tournament runner-up Alfonso Miguel Sánchez García with 40 points. The 2006 May Day Stableford was won with 41 points by David Fry who described his round as ‘one of those days where everything came together.’ Congratulations to David!
EASTER CUP – 17/04/06
Easter Monday saw a field of 48 players converge on the Indiana Course with the chance of not only trying to ‘beat the course’ but also to beat the newly crowned Men’s Club Champion, James Patterson.
Playing in the second group of the day and continuing his form from the Club Champion, James recorded a score of 38 Stableford points off his handicap of 2, to set an impressive early lead. In the group behind James, Kris Gray carded 37 points and in a repeat from the weekend finished just behind James. As Richard Betts, another 2-handicapper, added a second 37 point total to the leader board, it appeared that the low handicap players were going to dominate the tournament; more than half the players in the top 20 on the final results board held single figure handicaps.
As the last players finished their round and the results were confirmed, there was one player who had matched James’ total of 38 points, Tony Kelly. Having finished runner-up on Good Friday in the Captain’s Drive-In tournament, Tony was another player on top of his game and with a stronger back nine score today, managed to take the victory from James. With the count back for third place, Richard Betts took the final podium place from Kris Gray.
CLUB CHAMPIONSHIP & HANDICAP SALVER – 15 & 16/04/06
Often regarded as the most prestigious of all club tournaments, the 2006 Club Championship saw some of the best Desert Springs members come together this weekend hoping to prove that the cream really does rise to the top! With the handicaps of the 19 players ranging from 2 to 33, the chance of lifting either the Club Championship Trophy or the Handicap Salver was there for the taking.
James Patterson made the biggest impact on day 1 with an incredible score 69 which launched him into an overnight lead of 9 stokes in the Men’s Club Championship and with a handicap of 2 he held a 6 stroke lead in the Handicap Salver; in both cases pushing Kris Gray into 2nd place.
In the Ladies tournament, Wikkie de Graaf took the lead in the gross and nett competitions with a score of 94 to give her a cushion of 5 strokes and 4 strokes respectively over Elizabeth McCartney.
With the Indiana Course playing a little tougher on the second day Wikkie carded a 96 to add to her 94 on day 1 which gave a winning margin in the Ladies Club Championship of 8 strokes over Elizabeth. Wikkie’s handicap of 15.9 also saw her take the Handicap Salver by a margin of 6 strokes.
James Patterson fulfilled all expectations on day 2 as he fired a 2-over par score of 74 to hold off any challenge from playing partner Kris Gray to take both the Men’s Club Championship and Handicap Salver by 16 strokes and 10 strokes respectively. Defending Club Champion, Rory McCartney, couldn’t quite match the two youngsters for the title but did enough to secure 3rd place whilst George Manus took 3rd in the Men’s Handicap Salver.
CAPTAIN’S DRIVE-IN – 14/04/06
The 2005 Club Captain, Freddie Beames, officially handed over the reigns to the second Club Captain, Pat Craig, on the 1st April but today was pat’s first tournament in his new position; the Captain’s Drive-In.
An extremely supportive 53 members and guests entered the tournament and nine o’clock saw everyone on the first tee to witness the Captain’s Drive-In. It remains undecided whether it was the champagne reception or the pressure of the large crowd that saw Pat’s first swing fail to send the ball as far as the fairway! With two more attempts also failing to reach the fairway, the pressure was put onto the shoulders of young Harry Hitchins to hit the drive on behalf of the Captain. With Harry’s drive safely down the fairway the tournament officially got under way.
Things got a little better for Pat during his round but with a total of 28 stableford points it seemed very unlikely that he would win his own tournament and this proved true as nearly half the field returned scores of 30 points or more. As the final positions were determined, a count-back was needed to decide that Tony Kelly took 2nd place over Martin Symington, with both players having scores of 40 points. The clear winner of the tournament by 3 points with a total of 43 points, meaning a cut of 3.5 strokes to his 21.1 handicap was Kevin Higgins.
Following the Captain’s Drive-In dinner with presentation and raffle it was announced that over 800 Euros had been raised on the day for the Captain’s chosen charity, the Asociación de Minusválidos de Cuevas del Almanzora.
INDIANA MASTERS – 08 & 09/04/06
The Indiana Masters was the first 36-hole, 2 day, tournament on the Desert Springs 2006 Tournament Calendar and 19 players entered the combined stableford points format competition. Day 1 results were fairly consistent, with a number of players on 33, 34 and 35 points which seemed to indicate that everything was to play for on Day 2. That was until Harry Hitchins, playing in the last group, returned his scorecard with a score of 44 points. This gave him a 9 points lead going into day 2 which many seemed to think would be unassailable. At least it might have been if his handicap had not been cut from 19 to 16 at the halfway point and almost everyone else’s was increased!
As second day scores started to come in, Tony Kelly was the first to pose any sort of challenge to Harry; 36 points to add to 34 points on day 1 gave him a tournament total of 70. In the penultimate group, George Manus recorded the days best score of 40 points (to join his day 1 score of 32 points), which gave him the clubhouse lead with 72 points. Harry needed 29 points to win the tournament. As his day 2 score was added, the total was calculated at 27 points, 2 points shy of the winning number. This meant George was the 2006 Indiana Masters Champion, Harry was runner-up with Tony in 3rd place.
IRISH INTERNATIONAL TOURNAMENT – 19/03/06
This tournament was being played for the 3rd year and the Irish Team had some catching-up to do, having been defeated in both previous matches!
The morning was calm and everyone appeared to have recovered from St. Patrick’s Day 2 days earlier, surely the Indiana Course would surrender at least a few good scores today!?
With the ten best individual stableford scores from each team being combined to find the winning team, the Irish Team had the first advantage with 2 more players; 15 to the Rest of the World’s 13. As the results were entered, the Irish took another step towards taking the trophy for the first time as Tony Kelly, recent winner of the St. Patrick’s Day Bowl, produced the day’s best score of 38 points.
However, the other Irish players were not able to back-up Tony’s score and the best 10 results produced a team total of 306 points. The Rest of the World team were able to produce ten scores of 30 points and above to give a team score of 331 points and a winning margin of no less than 25 points.
Maybe it will be 4th time lucky for the Irish Team next year!
ST. PATRICK’S DAY BOWL – 17/03/06
The celebration of St. Patrick’s Day started in the traditional way at Desert Springs with the playing of the St. Patrick’s Day Bowl. As usual a strong field turned out to contest the crystal bowl, donated in 2004 by Peter O’Flannigan.
It is not uncommon for a count-back to be needed to separate 2 of the winning positions but for this tournament it would be needed to separate the top 4 players! Defending champion, Roger Andrews, Richard Dunphy, Anthony Kelly and Jim Kelly all finished with 37 points.
A drop in form on the back 9 holes with only 15 points saw Roger relegated out of the prizes. One point more, 16 points, saw Jim Kelly take 3rd place whilst Richard Dunphy took 2nd place with a back-nine score of 18 points. However, with a fantastic 19 points over the last 9-holes, Anthony Kelly was awarded the trophy as the St. Patrick’s Day Bowl champion, 2006.
GENTLEMAN’S AND LADIES GUEST DAY TOURNAMENTS 19/02/06
With only three pairings entered for the Ladies Guest Day each team were assured of a podium finish, but with the competitive nature of these ladies, winning would be all that mattered. Judith Beeton and Sandra Edwards could not quite match the other 2 pairs and finished in third place. With the remaining two 2 teams scoring 32 points each, a count back was needed to decide that Helen Lavis and Wikkie de Graaf would take 2nd place whilst the better back nine of Jean Carroll and Christine Langford gave them the win.
No count back was needed to separate the winning men’s teams but it was only a single point between 1st and 2nd place. In 3rd place, with 33 points, was the ever-consistent team of Roger Butters and Dennis Stafford who today came up 4 points shy of the second place team of Graham Beeton and Graham Jeffries. With their 1 point winning margin, a total of 38 points, the winners were Club Captain, Freddie Beames, and Martin Symington.
VALENTINES PAIRS TOURNAMENT – 14/02/06
Love was definitely ‘in the air’ as 9 pairs played their way around the Indiana Course in a pair’s betterball format to determine who would become the 2006 Valentines Champions. However, as the results came in and 5 of the 9 pairs had scores of 36 points or better the love started to fade and the glory of being the winners took over. Two pairings recorded 37 points but with the better back 9 hole it was José Arcos Usero and Francisco Rifa who took 2nd place, dropping the husband and wife team of Patrick and Jean Carroll into 3rd. The tournament winners, with a great score of 39 points were Richard Betts and David Lay.
N.B. It subsequently transpired that the tournament winning score was in fact that of John Fry and Harry Hitchins. Their score had been miscalculated on the Royal Spanish Golf Federation program, as a result of Harry’s handicap having been input as zero, which those who actually witnessed his magnificent par 4 on number 11, “Bones”, might just have concluded not altogether unjustified.
EPIPHANY CHALLENGE – 06/01/06
The Epiphany Challenge, or ‘El Desafio de la Dia de los Reyes’ to give it its true Spanish name, saw a return to individual tournament play. With a stableford format and the previous two years champions, Philip Lockyer and Brendan Breslin, in the field everything was to play for! In only the second group on the course Brendan recorded an impressive 37 points to set an early clubhouse lead. This lasted until Rafael Cardos, playing in the very next group carded 38 points. Philip, playing in the following group, could manage only 33 points so the trophy would definitely have a new name engraved on it for 2006. As more scores came into the clubhouse no-one was threatening Rafael’s score until Brian Chapman handed in his card, another 38 points which pushed Brendan into 3rd place. Count back to decide the winner showed Brian had 18 points on the back 9 holes, Rafael had 22 points.
THE COMMUNITY TROPHY – 04/01/06
Community pride was at stake today as golfers came together to represent their own communities within the Desert Springs Resort. Players would compete in an individual stableford format but the best 5 scores from each team would be combined to give a team total and decide which community has the best golfers! Four communities were represented; defending champions Desert Drive (8 players), Las Sierras (6 players), Powderhorn (8 players) and Buena Vista (6 players). Always going to struggle with only 6 players, Buena Vista played the supporting role propping up the results table with 146 points, whilst hot favourites, Desert Drive were stunned into 3rd place with 149 points. 17 points clear in 2nd place with a total of 166 points was Las Sierras whilst at the top of the tree with 173 points, including the best individual score of 41 points by Richard Wootton, Community Champions 2006 were Powderhorn.
CAPTAIN’S DAY TROPHY – 02/01/06
At 9.15am on Monday 2nd January 2006, the claxons sounding across the Indiana Course signalled the ‘shotgun’ start of the first ever Desert Springs Captain’s Day Trophy tournament. Eighty-eight players, the largest field for any club tournament, began what would turnout to be a fantastic day, not only for the golfers but more importantly for the ‘Associaciòn De Minusvalidos De Cuevas Del Almanzora’, the chosen charity of Captain Freddie Beames. With a 10 Euros donation being made from each entry, the charity fund had a healthy start before the first ball was even struck!
Amazing support for this charity event was shown by members, suppliers and local companies with each hole on the course being sponsored and a large array of prizes being provided for best scores on the day and also for ‘nearest the pin’ competitions on each of the Par 3 holes and ‘longest drive’ on the Par 4 10th Hole, ‘Eagles Back’. At the signature Par 3 hole, Nº 14 ‘Tiburon’ a special “hit the green gamble” awaited each player. Ten Euros from each player was optionally gambled on whether or not they could hit the green; a shot of 140 metres entirely over water. Those that hit the green would win 3 golf balls, those that missed would have their 10 Euros donated to the charity. With 3⁄4 of the field taking the gamble and only 16 players actually hitting the green, another sizeable sum was added to the charity fund.
As the players started to return to the clubhouse the scores were processed and the results could be announced and with prizes in two handicap categories for both Men and Ladies, everyone had a good chance of picking up a prize. As the results were given, three players were tied for the overall winner’s position with 38 stableford points; Ian Botham (Men’s Category 1), Dennis Stafford (Men’s Category 2) and Wendy Wooton (Ladies Category 2). A count back showed that 20 points over the back nine holes was good enough to beat Dennis’ 16 points and Ian’s 19 points and give Wendy the title of Captain’s Day Trophy Champion 2006.
With family and friends joining the golfers in the evening, over 100 people enjoyed the Gala Dinner held in the El Torrente restaurant at the clubhouse with Guests of Honour, Juana Molero Navarro, Presidenta de la ‘Asociación de Minusválidos de Cuevas Del Almanzora’, her husband Ignacio López Barrigan and son Ignacio López Molero. At the conclusion of his ‘Captain’s Speech’, Freddie invited Juana to the front of the room for the presentation of a cheque for all monies raised during the event for the Charity. Everyone in the room seemed momentarily stunned and Juana was lost for words as the value of the cheque was revealed as 10,415.62 Euros.
Freddie remarked at the end of the event, “I could not be more thrilled at the terrific response from our members and guests. I feel honoured to have been elected the first Club Captain by such a generous group of people”.