Two days in Khao Yai – two very different courses


The Billabong Bar Golf Group

Monday, Jan. 7, Eastern Star – Stableford

Eastern Star has got to be one of the hardest courses in the area.  The scores today were unbelievable with 31 points being the best of the day, and that was by a visitor.  

There was an incident with a cart hitting a palm tree, that does cost money if you do those sort of things; accident maybe but someone has to pay to fix it.  There was some conjecture of the brakes not working to satisfaction, but if you are not happy with the performance of any cart you hire, change it – it’s cheaper in the long run.

Richard Steadman, Allan Beck, Greig Ritchie, Plare and Karen enjoy some after golf drinks in Khao Yai.Richard Steadman, Allan Beck, Greig Ritchie, Plare and Karen enjoy some after golf drinks in Khao Yai.

Now back to the golf.  As said before, the winning score was 31 points from Brad Dodd while in second was the old master Bob Pearce with 29 on a three way count back over Glyn Davies in third and Scott Eaton fourth.  Fifth place went to another visitor, Gary Drew, on 28 points.

There were no ‘2’s at all today so all the money was paid out to those in the winner’s circle.

Wednesday, Jan. 9, Green Valley – Stableford

Green Valley was the order of the day, and 3 groups played there.  The course as usual was in great condition and a big thank you to Chris Dodd and the Ryves brothers for looking after the players as Capt Bob took 4 groups on a tour to Khao Yai.

Friday winners: Geoff Boyle, David Hausman and Mitch Black.Friday winners: Geoff Boyle, David Hausman and Mitch Black.

There were a couple of fine scores here with Richard Holmes coming with 38 points ahead of Chris Dodd in second with 36, thanks to his 21 points on the back nine, then came Kev Waycott and Wes Rado, both also with 36’s.  The score’s went downhill from there.

The ‘2’s pot was shared today by Wes Rado and Bob Finley.

Wednesday, Jan 9, Khao Yai G.C. – Stableford

The first official golf tour from the Billabong took place on Wednesday as four groups took off from the bar at 8.30 heading for Khao Yao and the town of Pak Chong to be precise.

This day we were meant to play Bonanza but it was full with South Korean golfers so we cancelled and played Khao Yai Golf Club instead.  What a fantastic course and designed by the master himself, Jack Nicklaus.  We got off to an easy start as there was nobody else on the course, and there as no humidity with just a nice light breeze to complement the golf.

This was the start of our two day tournament and the winner today was Scott Eaton with a magical 40 points.  In second place was Richard Steadman with 39 and third was Pauly O’Mahony with 38.  The next best was from a bevy of golfers all on 37 points; Greig Ritchie, Paul O’Mahony senior, and Allan Beck.

After golf it was back to the hotel for a clean-up and then drinks and finished in the evening by one of the best steaks you would get anywhere in Thailand.  We went back from the restaurant and sat outside with some drinking gin and tonic until they had to send the security guard down town for another bottle, not sure what time of the night that was.  Thanks for the Jamesons Mick, it was good to drink but hell the next day it was hard to lift the head but the bottle did make a good guitar.

Thursday, Jan. 10, Mountain Creek – Stableford

Day 2 of our Khao Yai trip and driving into Mountain Creek you wonder whether you are on safari … amazing clubhouse facilities and the staff there are very attentive … much better than the facilities at Khao Yai but the similarities stop there.

Knowledgeable people, who cannot be named for risk of a libel suit, had recommended the course and were not actually wrong – it proved to be a very difficult course where a number of the holes had bizarre quirks to them, which if you want a bit of fun then they would certainly supply the masochistic golfer with a sense that whoever designed the course had a weird sense of humour.  This was proven by the scores at the end of the day, the caddies were no real help and this is certainly not a big hitter’s course.  The rating from the group: A lot of money spent but we’d rather be somewhere else!

Now to the overall scores:  Capt Bob 36/31 (67), Karen Craigie 36/30 (66), Pauly O’Mahony 38/27 (65), Allan Beck 37/27 (64), Scott Eaton 40/22 (62), Richard Steadman 39/18 (57), Greig Ritchie 37/19 (56), Bob Pearce 30/25 (55), Darl White 30/25 (55), Paul O’Mahony 37 first day then a walk off in disgust the second day, Glyn Davies 38/12 (50), Walter Depooter 30/8, another walk off after 13 holes, Mick Bowe’s NR, Bill Marsden NR.

As you can see, this place is not the one you would go to twice.  There were 8 intrepid golfers that stayed another day to play Khao Yai Golf Course again before coming home.  All in all it was a very successful trip which will be repeated in a few months time.

Friday, Jan. 11, Treasure Hill – Stableford

We played today 3 groups today at Treasure Hill.  This course is in fantastic condition but is still one of the hardest around – the greens were as slippery as you can get and if you merely looked at the ball it moved 3 feet.  There were a few 4-putts out there from the scribe.

It was welcome back to Barry Lewis who has been away in about 20 different countries in the last 7 months and this time it took him 5 days to get over the jet lag.  Good to see you back mate!  Welcome also to Mitch Black, good to play with you mate, it was great fun.

The scores were not the best with three 32’s getting the top places in the winner’s circle, headed by David Hausman thanks to his 20 points on the back nine.  In second was Geoff Boyle and third place went to Mitch Black.

There were no ‘2’s again today so all the loot went in the prizes.

Note:  The Billabong Golf Bar is situated just off Siam Country Club Road, looking straight down Lake Mabprachan.  Call in for a cold beer or give Bob a call on 082 204 3411 if you want a game.