Toddy says goodbye with a win

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PSC Golf from The Growling Swan

Monday, Oct. 15, Mountain Shadow – Stableford

A late cancellation brought our numbers down to 21 as we assembled at The Growling Swan in readiness for the trip to the challenging Mountain Shadow Golf Club and happily the weather was fine after a couple of days with very little rain in Pattaya. 

It was terrific to see The Growling Swan “delinquents” back having another hit with us in preparation for the Monthly Mug in 10 days time.  We welcomed back mine host Peter Grey from his week in Melbourne, Australia, Peter Bye here again for a couple of weeks from his work at the North West Shelf in Western Australia, Ron Gillette from Melbourne and Alan Tranaeker & Bjarne Kjaer from Denmark.

Allan Tranekaer, Kae & Martin Todd. Allan Tranekaer, Kae & Martin Todd.

It was sadly time to farewell Martin “Toddy” Todd returning to Mandurah in Western Australia for a few months and Ken “let’s hear it for” Bernek who is once more off back to the USA but this time only for 11 days.  Another departee was David “Andrew” Allen who is going back to Melbourne for a couple of weeks or so.

We got away from the GS a couple of minutes ahead of schedule at 8.28 am and in fairly light Monday morning traffic we completed the journey to the golf course in a shade over 40 minutes.  As mentioned earlier the weather was fine and as the course was very quiet we were invited to tee off at our leisure and our first four ball teed off 25 minutes ahead of schedule at 9.35 am.

We could not believe the condition of the course after all the rain as compared to its “Sister” course, Crystal Bay it was in terrific shape with lush but not slushy fairways and beautifully prepared greens.  The course is a credit to the Greenkeeper & his staff for maintaining the high standard of this venue.

With nobody in front of us we breezed through the front nine in one hour & fifty five minutes and despite a Thai five-ball in front of us on the back nine we were travelling well until the thirteenth hole when the heavens opened.  Deafening thunder & plenty of lightning “spooked” a couple of our caddies as we sat out the storm under shelter and we watched the 13th green just about turn into a lake.  Having been through this many times before I was confident that it would eventually clear up and sure enough, after about 40 minutes the rain abated and 10 minutes later the thirteenth green was drained sufficiently for us to complete the hole and continue.  Unfortunately some others, including the Growling Swan “delinquents” were not as dedicated as the others and packed it in just after half way.

We plodded on without further incident or delay and completed the round in four hours & thirty minutes which included the storm delay.

We were able to have 2 grades with four podium spots in each.  A Grade was for handicaps 0 to 21 and B Grade for 22 and over.  We had nearest the pins on all the par threes which were sponsored by Brendan Byrne, Peter Bye, Paul Quinn & The Growling Swan.  There were also rewards for longest first putts on the 9th & 18 greens which were sponsored by The Mandurah Country Club. Many thanks to these golfers for their generosity.

Probably our most consistent golfer over the past few weeks Martin “Toddy” Todd celebrated his departure in style by winning the A grade with a fine 37 points.  A count back on 35 points was necessary to determine second & third spots with your writer (20 point back nine) finishing second from Peter Bye (19 point back nine) in third place.  In another count back for fourth, it was Ebrahim (17 point back nine) who edged out Frank Donnelly (16 point back nine) with both having 32 points.

Roy Dayton, Dick Braimbridge & John Pierrel. Roy Dayton, Dick Braimbridge & John Pierrel.

An excellent score of 38 points by Duangjai “Kae” Tusagad saw her win the B grade with Graham “Grunter” Buckingham in second spot with 27 points.  In yet another count back to decide third & fourth we had Dick “Reverend” Braimbridge (20 point back nine) taking third place from Roy Dayton (15 point back nine) in fourth spot, both with 26 points.  The Reverend’s 6/20 split must surely be a record for us and promotes the never say die theory!

A Flight (0-21)

1st Martin Todd (8) 37pts

2nd Peter Blackburn (11) 35pts

3rd Peter Bye (14) 35pts

4th Ebrahim (15) 32pts

B Flight (22+)

1st Duangjai Tusagad (33) 38pts

2nd Graham Buckingham (23) 27pts

3rd Dick Braimbridge (36) 26pts

4th Roy Dayton (23) 26pts

Near Pins:  5th – Graham Buckingham, 8th – Martin Todd, 15th – Frank Donnelly

Long Putts:  9th – Bjarne Kjaer, 18th – Dick Braimbridge

The winner of the NAGA award, presented to the golfer who has the worst score on the day, on this occasion was returnee Alan “parrot” Trannaeker and he accepted the award in good spirit.

Thursday, Oct. 18, Khao Kheow A & B – Stableford

Another fine field of 21 golfers assembled at The Growling Swan under blue skies with not a cloud in sight in readiness for the journey to the popular Khao Kheow Country Club.  The free tea & coffee was flowing as we welcomed Paul Seaford from Cambridge in the UK, Lyndsay Fry from New Zealand, Gary Monley from Newcastle in New South Wales, Australia and Pattaya residents Jim Bell & Paul Hack.  We also gave hearty congratulations to Alain “Inspector Clouseau” Taddei whose wife gave birth to a baby boy on the previous weekend.

Our 2 mini vans departed the GS right on schedule at 8.30 am and in just 35 minutes we arrived at Khao Kheow to find the golf course not too busy.  After the usual discussion with the starter, who reminded us that our tee time was 10.05am, it was agreed that we could tee off straight away and our first group got away 30 minutes ahead of schedule at 9.35 am.

The weather was glorious and it was obvious that we were going to have a completely dry & sunny day for the first time in a few weeks and the golf course was in fine shape although a little bit wet in parts naturally and several bare spots on the approaches to some of the greens.  It must also be noted that the greens whilst in good shape were a tad slower than normal.

We soon caught up with a five-ball in front which slowed down our first nine (B) to two hours & 15 minutes but they seemed to disappear on our second nine (A) which enabled us to complete the full round in four hours & twenty five minutes.  It was great to be playing golf in fine weather once again although the scores indicated that most of us struggled with the golf course as no-one was able to get within less than 2 worse than their handicap.

We were able to have 2 grades with four podium spots in each.  A Grade was for handicaps 0 to 17 and B Grade for 18 and over.  We had nearest the pins on all the par threes which were sponsored by David “Andrew” Allen, John Pierrel, Dick “Reverend” Braimbridge & The Growling Swan.  There were also rewards for longest first putts on the 9th & 18 greens which were very kindly sponsored by Ebrahim.  Many thanks to these golfers for their generosity.

With 2 golfers on 34 points in A grade a count back was necessary and first place went to John Pierrel (17 point back nine, 11 points on the last 6 holes) with Jim Bell (17 point back nine, 10 points on the last 6 holes) in second place.  In a three way counts back on 32 points it was Paul Hack (17 point back nine) who finished third from Mike “Hunter” Gosden (15 point back nine) in fourth place with Peter Bye (14 point back nine) just missing a spot on the podium.

Roy Dayton’s 34 points was good enough to win the B grade with Alain “Inspector Clouseau” Taddei second on 33 points.  Brad Todd managed to cope with the departure back to Australia of “Daddy” the previous evening and finished third with 32 points and Graham “Grunter” Buckingham (16 point back nine) finished fourth from Duangjai “Kae” Tusagad (15 point back nine), both having 29 points.

A Flight (0-17)

1st John Pierrel (11) 34pts

2nd Jim Bell (15) 34pts

3rd Paul Hack (11) 32pts

4th Mike Gosden (12) 32pts

B Flight (18+)

1st Roy Dayton (23) 34pts

2nd Alain Taddei (18) 33pts

3rd Brad Todd (19) 32pts

4th Graham Buckingham (23) 29pts

Near Pins:  A3 – Roy Dayton, A5 – Peter Bye, B3 – Mike Gosden, B8 – Jim Bell

Long Putts:  A9 – Peter Bye, B9 – Alain Taddei

The winner of the NAGA award on this occasion was Dick “Reverend” Braimbridge and he accepted the award in good spirit.  Back at The Growling Swan we had a good crew in attendance and mine host Peter Grey was in fine form although without his resident stooge, Andrew who had departed for a couple of weeks in Melbourne, Australia.  Another great day of golf with terrific company but it has to be said that Khao Kheow was the big winner on the day.

Note:  Growling Swan Golf welcomes golfers of any persuasion – low & high handicappers alike, female golfers and beginners.  We generally play Mondays & Thursdays, meeting at The Growling Swan (formerly The Bunker Bar) in Soi Chaiyapoon at 8.00 am with transport departing at 8.30 am.  For bookings or more information please contact Peter on 0806 351 386 or email to [email protected]