DevonGolf brought the individual competitive season to a close at with the Club Champion of Champions and the Order of Merits events played at Tavistock Golf Club. This season's finale was sponsored by Bonjour Golf.
After a week of somewhat iffy weather the competitors were treated to a glorious autumn day. The sun shone and the breeze picked up as the day progressed to keep things interesting on a brilliantly presented course. Some tricky flag positions made the task of scoring very demanding.
It was an administratively demanding day with 10 Orders of Merit to conclude, alongside the two Champion of Champions men and women's prizes for the best score of the day. Despite some late injury-related withdrawals, over 60 golfers from 27 clubs started the day. DevonGolf President Pam St Leger was early on the tee to send players on their way and later presented the trophies, although with it being such a long day not all winners were able to stay for the presentation. DevonGolf's Wendy Stanbury oversaw the administration of the day alongside Competitions Director Tim Aggett (in-between him also competing) to put together the results of the many competitions.
The two best scores of the day, men and women's, came from the two victors in the Club Champion of Champions event. Okehampton's Jack Whiteway (+2) produced a level par 71, 1 ahead of the home club's Adam Bridgewater (+1), to with the Men's Club Champion of Champions title. For the women, rising star Susie Carr of Teignmouth (4) beat Charlotte Dommett (Torquay, 3) on count-back after both shot 2-over par rounds.
In the Order of Merit events Yelverton's Ryan Acres (+1) retained his top spot in the men's competition with a 74. However, an equally solid 74 from Teign Valley's Nathan Davies (1) enabled him to leapfrog the absent Leigh Jones (East Devon) to put himself in 2nd place over the season. Leigh finished in 3rd place, ahead of Jay Scott (Tiverton) and Andrew Norman (Saunton).
The Women's Order of Merit had already been comprehensively sewn up by Boringdon Park's Chloe Howard (+5). Elizabeth Bird (Royal North Devon, 1) kept her 2nd place, despite a challenge from Torquay's Vicky Holloway who moved up to 3rd place. Susie Carr's round lifted her into joint 4th with the absent Gudrun Nolan (East Devon).
The Senior Men's Scratch OOM competition still had some life in it with the Warren pair of Chris Audin (0) and Tim Aggett (1) separated by a single point. It proved to be Aggett's day as the 62-year old produced a 72 to Audin's 75. Paul Newcombe (East Devon, +1) shot an excellent 73 to end up 6th in the Seniors' Order of Merit. The absent Jeremy Binch (Warren, +2) was 4th and Royal North Devon's Simon Waddington (2) shot a 75 to move up into 5th place.
The Senior Men's Handicap OOM lost its' leader Ian Wilson (Warren) to a knee operation and it was Stephen Bradley's to win. The Saunton man, playing off 12, did so in style by producing a nett 68 to take the top spot. Audin moved up into 2nd place, just pipping Royal North Devon's Dale Hurrell to 3rd place and Simon Knapman (Churston) into 4th, ahead of Ian Wilson who finished in 5th position.
In the Boy's Junior Order of Merit three of the top four boys were present. The top five girls were there to play for the two Order of Merit events. In the Girl's Scratch OOM Churston's Belle Tarr (4) shot 5 under to increase her commanding lead over Torquay's Mia Johnstone-Davis (26) to take 1st place. Natasha Parsons (Saunton, 27) finished third.
In the Girl's Handicap Order of Merit Isla Schofield (Woodbury Park, 27) had the best junior nett score of the day, 70, but that only moved her to 4th ahead of the absent Georgia Denega (Churston). Isla's score denied Belle Tarr and Mia the chance to catch her, meaning Natasha Parsons was the winner of the Girl's Handicap Order of Merit 2023.
Ben Wilman (East Devon, 4) led coming into the day in the U18 Boy's OOM and had the best score of 77 from the lads contending. Calum Cooney (Stover, 12) and Henry Cousins (Royal North Devon, 11) stayed in second and third places respectively.
Joshua Murphy (Exeter, 6) had a stranglehold on the U16 Boy's OOM and in the day's event was the only one playing. Charlie Ashbee (Yelverton, 2) had arrived to compete but a hand injury forced him into a late withdrawal.
Having played two fewer qualifying events than others there was too much ground for Jack Thorpe (Woodbury Park, 3) to make up on the other competitors in the U14 OOM, although he finished second on the day. Churston's Will Mulholland (1) clinched the title, ahead of third placed Joshua Lane (Honiton,17).
Another tight finish was in the U12 Boy's Handicap OOM where Henry Bright (Woodbury Park, 21) led Archie Griffiths (Sidmouth, 10) by a single point. It was Archie's day as he shot an excellent 83, nett 73, to beat Henry and take the season's title. Nicholas Locke (Staddon Heights, 15) finished in 3rd place.
Overall, it was an excellent day and made even better by the generous support from our sponsor Graham Ruth of Bonjour Golf. There were prizes and vouchers from Bonjour Golf for the winners and DevonGolf is very appreciative of the support.
Our thanks to Cameron Kenworthy and his team at Tavistock Golf Club. The course was in superb playing condition and the support from the in-house catering and pro shop teams was first class. Thanks also go to the members of Tavistock Golf Club who gave up their Sunday morning tee times to DevonGolf for this very exciting day's golf.