Rain-deira caddy blog
Our recent trip to what was formerly known as Madeira for the Madeira Open, was one we both greeted with much anticipation. Ricky Brackenbury, an Orsett attached professional had qualified via the Jamega Tour for the European and Challenge tour combined event at Santo de Serro golf course. I was playing the role of caddy and keeping Ricky's feet firmly on the ground after the leap up he had made. We both were looking forward to the experience of the tour life. To say there were some big ups and some downs wouldn't be an understatement, not only in performance but in experience too. I won't go in to too much detail about the golf as Ricky will be doing his report for the Orsett website.
So we flew to Madeira, and having conquered the runway; consisting of a dog leg starting with essentially a landing strip on stilts in the sea. We found our hotel, preferring to stay closer to the course than the official Casino hotel down in Funchal 40 minutes away, we dropped the luggage and grabbed the" sticks" and headed up the 2000ft to the course. In shorts myself and Ricky in the required trousers the sun shining, the week got off to a flyer. We were loving life. And then came the views, they did not disappoint. We played our first practice round in the sun on what has to be one of the best looking courses around with unbelievably amazing views of the bay and surrounding mountains.
Feeling confident, relaxed and enjoying the experience with such comments as 'this is the life eh mate?' we moved onto the second practice day. With the weather on the turn but still ideal for practice we ventured up again and put in some solid practice before playing the back 9 which would be Ricky's opening 9 on the first day. Again we were loving life and rick was calm and collected and playing good.
Day 3. The pro-am which we weren't participating in was delayed due to wind and fog. We relaxed and waited for a break in the weather to go to the range for final practise. Having done that it was time to get in the zone for tee off the following morning at 9.30am
At breakfast we got a message saying the first round would be delayed due to high winds. The delay was indefinite. Updates hourly. There were some videos coming from the tour moving balls 15ft from stationary, they even managed to hole a couple of 15 footers with no putter. Eventually the first days play was called off.
Keeping the 9.30 tee we moved to Friday, another delay of 1hr 50 but we eventually teed off. Play was pretty torturous with high winds, quick greens and a few nerves. But striking it nicely Rick felt good. With a couple of unfortunate bounces, 9 holes down we weren't in the greatest of shapes but stuck to what we knew which our luck would change. And it did. We had some good looks for a handful of birdies and left them in the jaws. With a mystery disappearing ball on the stunning par 5 third we took a triple and parred in. so we finally saw some reward but the putts didn't drop. I know what could have been isn't great but genuinely with a hotter putter and a better rub of the green the score would have painted a completely different story.
Round two was delayed due to weather and some still had to finish round one, they squeezed those round and changed the event to a 36 hole tournament. Shotgun start Sunday with cut after 18 which unfortunately wasn't us. But it wasn't for anyone in the end as the final round was eventually called off for a combination of wind rain and fog.
Madeira became rain-deira and there were a lot of disappointed players that had travelled from far and wide. I think Ricky was the happy one as his round like the tournament was void as 36 holes couldn`t be completed. He will be invited back out for the rescheduled event ready to show the real him. Hopefully I may get the invite providing I haven't got the sack.
So as you can see there were a few ups and some down but we will learn from the experience and put in a better showing upon touching down on the opening dog leg at the airport.
Karl Morris night coming soon…
Make a date for your diary, Wednesday 6th May. Karl will be in the Clubhouse with a follow up seminar to the highly successful event I hosted last year.
A ticket will cost just £12.50 unless a pre seminar meal is required which will take the cost to £19 in total.
It will be a very useful event to attend for all standards of player so please, do not think it will only benefit a top player. One thing you can control is your own attitude toward your game. Attitude toward the weather, the course condition even the speed of your playing partners which always are high on the excuses for a bad round can be learnt to ignore, Karl brings loads of ideas to help with this and much more. It's open to both members and friends, the more the merrier but we will have to limit numbers to 130 due to space. I look forward to getting you signed up for what will be an evening of interest and education for us all.
Cadets at it again…
Last week I mentioned Zach and Alfie making head way, well it's the turn of 3 more this week. Harry Robson, Callum Newton and Joseph Defries have all made it into the Essex under 16 elite squad. The amazing thing is all three are just 14 years old and play in the under 15s team. Well done to the boys. Cadet Organiser, Mark White, must be doing something right at Orsett these days.
Many thanks to all of you who have bought into the 4 for 3 personalised ball option from Titleist so far. Don`t worry if you have yet to do so, it runs until April 12th. Keep a look out on my newsletter, website, in store and around the Club for other early season promotions coming your way. After bringing the bag deal to your attention 6 of you took that up overnight! Shoes and lithium batteries are just around the corner!
The Masters is only days away now, players have only Georgia on their mind with golfs first Major ahead. Biggest talking point though is whether Tiger will play? If he does what a bun fight it could be (it will be any way). He is 44/1 to win at the moment, when was he this long in the betting? Will Bubba continue to run the tables or can Rory become the 4th player to do a personal Slam after Sarazen, Nicklaus, Player and of course Tiger? Is Adam Scott got the nerve on the greens with the short putter? Will Jason Day finally break through? What about Henrik Stenson? Will his fragile putting survive the treacherous Augusta marble putting surfaces? Or could it be time for Ricky to live up to his billing? Maybe Phil or Vijay could do something for the veterans? So many possibilities, the only person not mentioned was Sandy Lyle (sorry Sandy, overlooked again!) What an event it looks like being.
For those in our sweepstake, names of your players will be posted Tuesday of The Masters.
Anyone who missed the Home Nations last weekend, possibly missed the best day of rugby since the British Lions massacred The Springboks on the 1974 Tour. Three teams had a realistic chance to win the Championship which could have gone to all of them at one point. Records were broken in all matches as the teams strived to close the winter season with some silverware. Wales added 54 points in a second half, Ireland had their best win at Murrayfield(thanks to Stuart for dropping the ball over the try line just before the end) and England probably the unluckiest scored a record 55 points over the French and it still wasn`t enough to get past Ireland. Ted Lyons got his wish. After last week's defeat in Cardiff, his Emerald boys claimed it all. How good is the World Cup going to be later on this year? 6 teams have a great chance of success, it could be the best one ever. Personally I can`t wait.