The Goldthorpe Salver
Champeen Charles Webb
Runner-up Roger Thomas
Goat Chris Broadbent
Best 1st Round Andrew Sugden*
Tim Sugden Tankard Roger Thomas
Best 2nd Round Charles Kaye**
Nearest Pin 1st Round Mark Wilcox
Nearest Pin 2nd Round Mike Webb
Longest Drive 1st Round Mike Webb
Longest Drive 2nd Round Roger Thomas
Lost Ball Sweep Steve Sutcliffe (64)
Champion Sweep John Liddiment
Goat Sweep Mark Wilcox
* Excluding Champion
** Excluding Runner-up
Charles Webb won the 2010 Goldthorpe Salver by seven points - not the biggest margin of victory in the Salver's history, but possibly the most predictable sporting result since Shergar won the Derby. Roger Thomas won the Tim Sugden Trophy, and Chris Broadbent finished last to be crowned Goat.
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
After last year's successful change of venue, a party of six played at Penrith Golf Club. Thankfully, the heavy rain on the journey up the M6 abated just as we arrived, and the round was played in decent - if windy - weather.
Balls were thrown in the air, with Wilcox, Sampson (pictured) and Nicholson taking on Shires J, Webb M, and Kaye, in a two-to-count Stableford competition. The outcome was entirely predictable.
Webb (36), Shires (30), & Kaye (27), beat Wilcox (35), Sampson (26), & Nicholson (18) by 79 points to 68. (Approximate individual scores in brackets)
Penrith again proved a popular choice, though the presence of another visiting party - the Cumbrian Greenkeepers' Society - meant that we had to tee off earlier than we would have liked, without the amount of liquid refreshment to which Woodsome members are accustomed.
It also resulted in an early finish, necessitating a change of plan for our evening meal. In an effort to find somewhere closer to Silloth, Wilcox produced the 1993 edition of the Good Pub Guide - a typically well-meaning but foolish gesture.
After much discussion, we drove to Maryport, on the west coast of Cumbria, where we went into the first pub we came across.
Although Maryport itself had to little to recommend it, the Lifeboat Inn happily proved to be a fine choice, with huge portions at very reasonable prices.
After a 20 minute journey on the coast road, we arrived at the Golf Hotel to find a visiting party from Scotland in OUR dining room. What's more they seemed to have formed the impression that they'd already booked it for the following night, which sent the Supremo to bed in a state of extreme agitation.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Following assurances by hotel staff that the Scottish usurpers had been rebuffed, Nicholson felt it was safe to leave for the Golf Club, where we were joined by John Drake. Charlie Kaye decided that 54 holes of golf were quite enough for him over two days, so he opted to sit out the morning round, which left six of us to throw balls in the air again.
In a strong North Westerly wind, blowing straight off the Solway Firth, Nicholson was first to tee off, using a brand new rescue club purchased the evening before at Penrith after the blade of his not-so-trusty 3 iron had parted company with its shaft. To the amazement of everyone - not least himself - his drive soared straight and true down the middle of the fairway.
Notwithstanding the promises he'd been given earler in the morning, the Supremo was still convinced that the nefarious Scots would somehow inveigle their way back into the dining room, so he despatched Kaye back to the Golf Hotel to have another word with the management. By the time he returned, Wilcox and his team were well on their way to another unsurprising defeat.
Webb (35), Shires (31), & Nicholson (23) beat Wilcox (27), Sampson (25), & Drake (23) by 78 points to 63.
The arrival of eight more competitors over lunch meant there were now 15 players for the afternoon round - a state of affairs that caused familiar confusion. The seemingly insoluble problem of what format to play was only resolved when Webb M arrogantly suggested that he would play on his own against two opponents.
Accordingly "Youth" again took on "Experience", though with several anomalies, not the least of which was Webb representing "Youth" in a match against Roger Thomas - two years his junior - and Steve Sutcliffe, who isn't. Sadly Webb's blind faith in his own ability was misplaced, as Youth had their backsides metaphorically spanked by their elders.
Sutcliffe & Thomas beat Webb M 2 &1; Butler and Kaye lost to Webb C and Wilcox 5 & 4; Liddiment and Drake halved with Nicholson and Shires R; Sugden WA and Sampson beat Shires J and Durrans 2 & 1. Experience beat Youth 2 and a half to 1 and a half.
Dinner was taken in the new dining room, as promised by the hotel management, though not before Frank Whiteley, who'd travelled from a business meeting in Milton Keynes earlier in the day, was sent to his room to change.
Not only had he arrived in the bar without a tie - as had the other usual suspects - but he'd also forgotten his jacket.
The highlight of the evening was
arguably Nicholson getting very cross with an inebriated Andrew Sugden, who - between power naps (pictured) - continually interrupted the official proceedings.
These included the presentation of the prestigious solid silver trophy to John Drake, captain of the winning team in the Thursday afternoon competition, and the draw for the first round of the Goldthorpe Salver the following morning. Wilcox and Shires J drew the shortest of straws - last out in a fourball pairing with Sugden and Sutcliffe.
Friday, September 17, 2010
Once again the sun shone on the righteous, and with winds lighter than the previous day, the scene was set for a host of eagles and birdies . Alas, they failed to materialise; in fact the standard of play was decidedly average - no doubt reflecting the fact that neither the bar in the Golf Hotel or the Clubhouse was open when we teed off.
There were a few notable exceptions. Charles Webb played faultlessly on his way to 38 Stableford points, which suggests that off a handicap of 1, he knocked it round in a nett 71. That gave him a seemingly unassailable half way lead of seven points over......Andrew Sugden!
Andrew's round hadn't started auspiciously; if Indian bookmakers HAD taken bets on him nobbing his opening drive into that little patch of rough just to the front left of the first tee, they would have had to pay out many, many rupees (see picture).
But subsequently his golf improved to the extent that he rounded the turn with a points total in the twenties, and only a wayward finish prevented him from mounting a more serious challenge to the halfway leader.
However, his performance - combined with an equally mind-boggling display from Steve Sutcliffe - still resulted in utter humiliation for Wilcox and Shires, who narrowly avoided being thrashed by a dog licence in their side-game.
Sutcliffe lunched on 30 points alongside Sambo, while Broadbent, Butler, Drake and Wilcox faced a quick turnround to be first out in the Goat party.
In fact Wilcox didn't have time for lunch in the clubhouse; last out in the morning and first out in the afternoon, he took his sandwich with him.
Fortified by some much needed lunchtime lotion, scores improved in the afternoon, though nobody came remotely close to challenging Charles for the Salver. However Roger Thomas did come in with the best round of the day - 39 points - to take the Tim Sugden Trophy and finish runner-up.
Meanwhile two-time former winner Chris Broadbent posted the only sub-20 score score of the day to claim - if that's the right word - the Goat prize.
At dinner that evening the appearance of a man in a white suit caused a great deal of confusion. At first it was thought it must be the chap delivering the ice creams for the pudding course, until someone realised that it was in fact Wilcox in fancy dress.
Meanwhile apart from Charles, the happiest men at the table were John Liddiment, whose assiduous stewardship of the book resulted in a profit of over £70, and Andrew Sugden, who had the rare satisfaction of being awarded a prize for his spectacular first round.
And gratifyingly we proved that we're not a set of heartless bastards by having a whip round for Lisa Wilson and Hannah Shires, who were both competing in the Great North Run two days later. Lisa was raising money for an Alzheimer's charity, while Hannah was running for Andrea's Gift, which supports
research into brain cancer, from which Tim Sugden suffered. With both Lisa and Hannah completing the half marathon, their chosen causes benefitted by an additional £75 each.
As usual our thanks go to the staff at the golf club, which once again was in superb condition, and the Golf Hotel, who looked after us with their customary forbearance.
PLAYER BY PLAYER RANKINGS
1. Charles Webb 38 + 35 = 73 Bit boring really.
2. Roger Thomas 27 + 39 = 66 Second round was impressive, but it's difficult to see the handicap committee taking such a laissez-faire approach next year.
3. Charles Kaye 28 + 35 = 63 His game improved consistently once it was pointed out to him that however technologically advanced his new bats may be, they wouldn't make much difference if he played with a Penfold Commando (right).
4. Chris Durrans 29 + 33 = 62 The "nearly man" again. Until every last scrap of heather and gorse is removed, and all traces of rough - not to mention bunkers - are done away with, it's hard to see him win.
5. Andrew Sugden 31 + 27 = 58 Duffed his opening drive, but made it over the rubbish onto the 17th fairway for the first time ever. In the end only let down by his body, which isn't designed for 36 holes.
6= John Shires 24 + 33 = 57 So bad in his first round that he was flattered by 24 points, but much improved after shovelling down some alcohol. Blaming greasy coronation chicken on his hands for a poor drive on the 1st was one of his more imaginative excuses.
6= Steve Sutcliffe 30 + 27 = 57 Considering his recent lack of golf, a remarkable performance that should have him thinking of resuming full time. Not so impressive on Friday night, though.
6= Chris Sampson 30 + 27 = 57 How many times have we said "Flattered to deceive"? Yet again one of the pre-tournament favourites flopped.
9. John Liddiment 24 + 32 = 56 Average on the course, but £70 profit on the book made him Einstein off it. Having said that, he would have been royally stuffed had the Judge won.
10= John Drake 21 + 34 = 55 Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear! Tragic to see a giant of the game laid so low.
10= Mike Webb 27 + 28 = 55 A changed man. Not only did he look for his playing partners' balls, but when he found them, he told them where they were. Otherwise true to his word: opening round at Penrith was his best, and it was all downhill from there.
12. Mark Wilcox 21 + 32 = 53 Believe it or not, he probably played better than his scores suggest. OK...don't believe it. It's a lie. Nice suit though.
13. Mark Nicholson 22 + 28 = 50 Goatdom avoided = mission accomplished! Rescue club bought at Penrith might just have rescued his game as well.
14. Rupert Shires 23 + 26 = 49 How are the mighty fallen! From hero to almost zero in 12 months. Makes you wonder about those drugs rumours after all.
15. Peter Butler 21 + 24 = 45 Another man cruelly let down by his body.
16. Chris Broadbent 21 + 19 = 40 Turned up late, and obviously paid the penalty for missing out on practice rounds. However another reason could be that's he's crap.
Richard Whiteley DNP What a treat to have Frank with us for two nights! At least we know what's wrong with the country now.