Keith conquers all on Hua Hin road-trip

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Outback Golf Bar 2nd Syd LeBron Memorial Putter

Monday, August 27, Day 1 – Sea Pine

With the advance party of Rosco & Capt’ Steve arriving on Thursday (23rd) followed by Pottsy, B1 (Bruce Milner) & Sel Wegner on Saturday (25th), the remaining 55 players and friends descended upon the City Beach Hotel and the Thipurai at strewn out intervals on Sunday (26th) afternoon.

It should have been a straightforward drive from Pattaya, particularly in this age of GPS but for some it wasn’t quite that easy, which included the General who came off at the wrong toll twice and should known better having driven here a number of times now (but he blamed Suzi, the vehicle owner, Dave the GPS owner, for turning off the commentary and Chad the navigator), so no doubt they will all be fined!

Winner Keith Allen, centre, flanked by runners-up Barry McIntosh, left, and Dave Branigan.Winner Keith Allen, centre, flanked by runners-up Barry McIntosh, left, and Dave Branigan.

Then there was one other person, who shall not be named but somehow his GPS took him up the highway 2 towards Khon Kaen; some 1100km later at around 11.30 Sunday night, he arrived in Hua Hin.

Tina’s and the Pink Panther quickly became the favoured drinking establishments and with 60 Outbackers and friends roaming the small Soi’s here, you couldn’t go far with bumping into somebody you knew or were about to know.

Up early on Monday morning for breakfast and off to Sea Pine (The Army Recreational Centre) for a 9.30 tee time, just a short trip down the road (about 6km) going south and right on the beach.

The first drive of the tour was hit by Chad (Barry Chadbourn) exactly on time and off we streamed, playing from the executive tee (white) measuring around 6400 yards.  It’s a bit of a daunting first tee shot with water in front and on the right and a bunker on the left but then you realise the hole is only just over 300 yards long, nevertheless a testing little start.

Peter Rooke with his first hit of the day at Black Mountain.Peter Rooke with his first hit of the day at Black Mountain.

There’s one more hole on this side before ducking under the road for the majority of the course then returning to the seaside for the last four holes, with the 16th green right next to the sea and the 17th & 18th running right alongside; all very scenic.

The course seemed to vary in condition between the front and back nines; with the front side greens running very much better than the back nine, which still seemed quite new and the bunkers which had no sand on the front were too full and soft on the back but all in all worth about a six out of ten, as it did little to inspire and was fairly uninteresting with a couple of mickey mouse holes.

So to the golf, Jimmy Smiles, who was not eligible to win the overall tournament, posted the best score of the day of 43pts to win Div D by a massive seven points from the very last person to sign up for the tour, Barry McIntosh on 36.

Keith Allen, who’s usually more at home hacking his way round Pattaya Country Club with his good mate Jim Payne, surprised himself with a 38 to win Div C and said afterwards, “Well I’ve had my good round!”  He was followed home by Mike Jeffreys (35).

Div B was taken by the ever-improving Jim Bryan with a fantastic 42pts to win from Adam Oyston (38) and Div A went to Kev Waycott (also with 38), who would find himself playing off single figures at the end of the tour, as he continued his purple patch of the last couple of weeks.  Defending champion, Mark Reid, returned a fine 37 after beating Lloyd Shuttleworth on count back.

There were three ‘2’s from Jimmy Smiles (8th) and two more on the 17th from Rosco & Peter Rooke.

Div A (0-11)

1st Kev Waycott (10) 38pts

2nd Mark Reid (10) 37pts

3rd Lloyd Shuttleworth (6) 37pts

Div B (12-15)

1st Jim Bryan (14) 42pts

2nd Adam Oyston (15) 38pts

3rd Sel Wegner (12) 34pts

Div C (16-19)

1st Keith Allen (18) 38pts

2nd Mike Jeffreys (18) 35pts

3rd Suzi Lawton (18) 34pts

Div D (20+)

1st Jimmy Smiles (20) 43pts

2nd Barry McIntosh (20) 36pts

3rd Ed Delaney (24) 35pts

Tuesday, August 28, Day 2 – Black Mountain

It would be difficult to bring a group of 60 golfers to Hua Hin and not play the renowned Black Mountain course; the only problem is, the owner won’t stop fiddling with it.  It’s been open since 2007 and there is still work going on, which is mostly cosmetic.  As a result, there are many critics of the course but nevertheless this is a great layout and should not be left out of anybody’s schedule, provided the price (green fee) is right.

Ken Hole and Eddie Beilby talk about ‘what could have been’.Ken Hole and Eddie Beilby talk about ‘what could have been’.

The weather was hot and mostly sunny as we teed off on time from the “65” markers, which are the old blue tees, with Ray Dell striking the first ball of the day.  Later in the round we had the only rain of the tour, which lasted about 20 minutes, briefly flooding some of the fairways and greens which quickly drained away, causing little more than 30 minutes delay in total.

The top score of the day came again from Monday’s surprise winner of Div C, Keith Allen, with a massive 43pts, which when added to his first round total of 38 put him well clear after two days, with a total of 81pts.  General Jack played better than he has for a long time to record a 39 to take second place in the same division with Mike Jeffreys third on 38.

Div A went to Dave Branigan, with a net one over par of 35pts followed home by Paul Greenaway (34); whilst Peter Rooke won Div B with 37 from Craig Matthews on 35.

Barry McIntosh moved into second place overall (total 76pts) with a fine 40pts today, winning Div D by two from Brian Maddox (38) and Ed Delaney (34).

There were seven ‘2’s from; Ray Dell & Eddy Beilby (3rd hole), Jan Eriksen & Paul Greenaway (8th hole), John Fitzgerald (14th hole) and Keith Allen got two on the 3rd & 8th.

Div A (0-11)

1st Dave Branigan (9) 35pts

2nd Paul Greenaway (7) 34pts

3rd Jeff Calrow (11) 32pts

Div B (12-15)

1st Peter Rooke (15) 37pts

2nd Craig Matthews (15) 35pts

3rd Keith Buchanan (15) 33pts

Div C (16-19)

1st Keith Allen (18) 43pts

2nd Jack Moseley (19) 39pts

3rd Mike Jeffreys (18) 38pts

Div D (20+)

1st Barry McIntosh (20) 40pts

2nd Brian Maddox (20) 38pts

3rd Ed Delaney (24) 34pts

Thursday, August 30, Day 3 – Banyan –

So the showdown of the 2nd Syd LeBron Memorial Putter was once again at the beautiful Banyan course, where they look after us so well and the course is always in tip top condition.  Today was no exception but they (the management) were thrown into slight disarray, as our start sheet had changed from the one sent to them the day before (Weds) and changed another three times, before we teed off; even then we failed to get it right leaving a three-ball near the back of the field, as somebody failed to show, without so much as a phone call!

So our field was reduced to 55 but got away on time (9 a.m.) with as usual, the leaders going out last; the weather was great and the greens slick and tricky to read.

As the round progressed the swirling wind strengthened to become quite a factor on the back nine but it didn’t stop Mike Gosden firing an excellent 40pts to win Div B, playing off 12.  Behind him there was a gap of seven then four players all with 33pts, headed by Craig Matthews on count back.

There were another three players tied up also on 33pts in Div A, this time behind the winner, Dave Branigan with 39; whilst Div C and Div D went to Andrew Robinson (37pts) and George Bishop (38pts), respectively.

There were another eight ‘2’s from Keith Allen & Keith Buchanan (hole 4), Dave Branigan, Rosco & Kev Waycott (hole 15) and Art O’Connor, Sugar Ray & another one for Kev. (hole 17).

Div A (0-1)

1st Dave Branigan (9) 39pts

2nd Lloyd Shuttleworth (6) 33pts

3rd Rosco Langoulant (10) 33pts

Div B (12-16)

1st Mike Gosden (12) 40pts

2nd Craig Matthews (15) 33pts

3rd Ray Dell (12) 33pts

Div C (17-19)

1st Andrew Robinson (18) 37pts

2nd Charlie Ayres (19) 36pts

3rd Sugar Ray Handford (18) 34pts

Div D (20+)

1st George Bishop (20) 38pts

2nd Ed Delaney (24) 37pts

3rd Brian Maddox (20) 33pts

So another great tour down in Hua Hin, where our numbers alone reflected the growing popularity of golf in this area.  Welcome to all the new guys to an Outback tour and I hope you all enjoyed it and thank you to the golfing committee for all their help and to Micky & Dah for driving the Outback buses.

We return here in March 10th 2013 for the 2nd Hua Hin Handicap, information about which will be published as soon as the high season rates for the hotels and golf courses are made available.

So congratulations to Keith Allen (113pts) who held it altogether to retain his five shot lead to win the tournament from Barry McIntosh (108pts) and Dave Branigan (106pts).

For a full list of the overall scores, go to www.outback golfbar.com.