Scottish Boys 1st Round 

Rick had a start time at 9:40 today, so it was an early start & to make things easier for my mum, we decided to have breakfast at the Monifieth GC, who are the hosting club this week… a couple of bacon & scrambled egg rolls & we jumped back in the car to go to the practice ground so Rick could warm up. 

It’s again windy today, not as much as yesterday & not straight down wind, but more left to right & helping on the first 6 holes, blowing everything towards the out of bounds. 

It’s a day for fairways & greens & making as many pars as you can & avoiding doubles or worse, time to go…. he’s nervous going to the first tee, but he hits a solid iron & finds the green with his 2nd, 2 putts later it’s a solid opening par 4. Unfortunately he hits his tee shot straight right o.b on the 2nd…..He’s nervous & like the tournament in December in America he’s indecisive over the shot & not following his routine. Sometimes you feel he needs a kick up the backside to get him going…… he misses the green just left about 12-13 yards from the hole….which he holes ….bonus!!!! Hopefully this will settle him down…. nope…. not really, after a par at the 3rd he then 3 putts both the 4th & the 5th for bogey…..

A slow play warning from the referee on the 6th tee seems to do the trick…. look at his yardage book, decide where to hit it, couple of practice swings then bang hit it…hits a nice tee shot on 6 and plays a wonderful approach to about 6ft…birdie. 

The 7th is a long par 4 back into the wind, good drive and a lovely long to about 20ft… bang!!! Birdie. The short par 4 8th, Rick hits a nice tee shot into the greenside bunker & up & downs it for birdie… 3 on the spin & back to level par. The par 5 9th back into the wind is a brute….

Rick found the fairway bunker off the tee… it’s gonna be a good bogey from here, after splashing out the bunker then a fairway wood he finds the green with his 4th & 2 putts later he can put a bogey on the card. All in all it’s a solid front 9 in 1 over par. 

Now, the back 9 is gonna be a different animal…. with 6 holes  into the wind. After par-ing the 10th he pushed his tee shot way right of the green on the par 3….. with no way of stopping it over the bunker, there was little option but to chip between the bunkers & try to make a bogey…. a nice chip, but a very careless first putt he doubled after missing his short putt. 

Two good pars on 12 & 13 he moved onto the par 3 14th, a short hole with the freshening wind coming off the right, gorse & whinn bushes right off the green, it was no disaster missing the green but another careless approach led to another bogey on the card. 

Ok…..  he’s now 5 over with 4 to go, not to bad if he get to the house with a 76 in this wind….. Rick crushes his drive on 15 splitting the fairway to leave a short pitch to the green….

A low chip & run along the ground our young shot maker from Holland is adapting to Scottish links golf very well, his birdie putt has a quick look at the hole, but slips by leaving a tap in par. 

A good drive on 16, he pushes his 2nd short right of the green and has  a bunker between him and the flag…. now if any of you know links golf playing of hard tight ground, chipping can give you the hebee jeebies especially if you got to go over a bunker, the saving grace is that it’s into the wind….. after stepping out being indecisive a couple of times he duffed it into the bunker & made double pfffff. 17 a long par 4 bang into the wind he couldn’t reach the green in 2 but had a reasonable chance to get it up & down, another indecision over his straight forward bump & run that ran carelessly passed the hole for another bogey. 

A great drive and a lucky 2nd shot that could of easily ran into the bunker if it was a yard or so further right….. but hey you got to run with the breaks, he had 56 yards over and choose to play a shot that could get him in the one a clock gang (the old golfers in the Carnoustie GC ) any day….. it wasn’t my or Herman’s club choice but who are we anyway. ​​

​He tapped in his birdie for a 78 & all in all it wasn’t to bad an opening round that keeps him in the tournament. Into the Monifieth GC for a drink & it was down to the Carnoustie GC for a 

My mum had a chicken curry for dinner and it was off out to the patch (practice ground) at Carnoustie for some fine tuning. 

The wind had been up all day & by plays end Rick is lying t39 bang on the cut. Best score of the day was a very impressive 2 under 69 from a guy from Iceland 👏🏻👏🏻well played young man. Tomorrow’s tee time is a late one…. 2pm, so a bit of a lie in it’ll be then. 

Garry

Scottish Boys with Rick Hessing at Monifieth Golf Club

This week, I’m off back home with Rick & Herman Hessing. 

We travelled down from the East of Holland this morning on the train to Schipol Airport in Amsterdam….. easy, relaxed & no hassle from traffic jams & parking after last nights Bruno Mars concert in Cologne (only a few hours sleep…😴😴)

After a short flight into Edinburgh, Herman picked up the hire car from the rental company & we headed up the road to Monifieth. 

Monifieth is a town next to where I grew up & where you’ll find the best course in the world Carnoustie 😉….. We are staying with my parents in Carnoustie, who I’ve not seen since September, so it’s mum’s cooking for a week….. Always when I go back home, like most others of the British pro’s in Holland, we have a bucket list that has to be done whilst we’re back on home soil. 

Mine is is a goooood pint of Guinness, a bag of salt & vinegar crisps, fish & chips from the local chipper, a bottle of irn bru & maybe grab an Indian from the Gulistan….. but not all at the same time. 😜 A busy week, then before heading back to Holland a happy camper……

So, after a 90 minute drive we arrived at Monifieth & Rick went off to register & get changed before his practice round… time for Herman & I for a quick pint of Guinness. 

Rick got changed & I had a blether with the pro’s Gordon McLeod & Lee Sutherland, who I’ve not seen in years, the guys sent out a yardage chart to Rick so he can get a heads up before he comes over what was nice of the guys to do. Cheers guys!!

Since we came off the plane the weather was cold & very windy, I had called my dad the day before to ask what the weather was like….”lovely weather, it’s boiling” he said. So, it was in the bag with the waterproofs & woolly hat. 😉

Monifieth, is a links course, it’s used for Open Qualifying when The Open is at Carnoustie & of course, it’s used for many Scottish National events, I played here in the same event in 1990, where I finished 3rd in the same tournament as is getting played this week. The first 6 holes are all in the same direction & it’s playing down wind today & it’s very strong. So strong, that the first hole at 338 yards, Rick almost knocked it on the green. The first 6 holes with the wind in your back may be beneficial from the tee,  but it was very, very difficult to get the ball close from the short chip/pitch to the green. Hole 7 was straight back into the teeth of the wind and where Rick was hitting a 3 wood 300+ yards, here he hit a cracker only 210-220, the 9th was also a brute.

Where 9 was straight into the wind, the 10th was straight downwind & Rick hit his 3 iron 290 onto the middle of the green. After a couple more holes, he was getting tired and a few erratic shots, he decided to walk the rest of the course from the 13th. 

Rick likes the old stories about the older Scottish players  from yesteryear from around these parts & there can be no better than the famous Ian Hutcheon…… a legend absolute legend. 

We finished at 8 o’clock and it’s been a long day,  so it’s back to ma & pa’s for some dinner & a whisky or two with my dad after Rick is tucked up early in bed. 

Up early tomorrow for the first round…. Rick has a tee time at 9:40 with two Scottish……

It’s a big field, with almost 200 players trying to make the cut with only 40 players going thru to Friday….. he’s building his experience & is doing his ground work by playing & putting himself in difficult situations. Links golf is something he doesn’t play every week & playing in that wind is not that easy for anybody. If the wind stays up & he keeps it between 75-79 for 2 rounds he’ll of done well, but let’s see after the first round what the scores are like……to make the cut is surely the first goal. 

Garry

Mystery for Melle

If you read the earlier blogs Melle Tukker celebrated his birthday during the Mystery Cup & Leonie had a emergency plan as his wife is expecting to give birth. 

On touching down in Rotterdam he got a call from his wife she was on her way to the hospital. At 18:40 Seb was born, 51cm long & weighing 3680 grams. 

Congrats Melle !!

Mystery Cup Day 3

So,  here we are the last day Mystery Cup 2017. We are playing today Palmares!!

Designed by mother-nature, Onyria Palmares highlights itself in the Algarve coast because of the prime location, faced to this incredible blue scenario of the Alvor lagoon, the “meia-praia” beach and the Lagos bay. A Perfect contrast with the green of this unique 27-hole golf course designed by Robert Trent Jones II, where the links holes along the beach and the great views are the highlighting points.
Today we are playing Stableford, then the team score added together and then divided by 50%. We have the usual longest & closest to the pin on holes 7&8 & an added beat the pro on hole 23 a par 3 of 156 yards over a water hazard to a green, that has a wicked pin position in a sort trench in the middle of the green. Basically, if you can’t find the trench with your tee shot your going to 3-4 putt. 

We have been running a two bus system all week, the first bus bring the guys who want to work on their games & the second bus for the guys who are just happy to go straight out on the course or the ones who stayed a little to long in the bar the night before. 

Roy, who after a good nights sleep, is feeling a lot better and is ready to roll this morning, in the first bus we had 13 from 40 guys wanting to go to the range…. Is it that they don’t trust us with their game or was it a good night in the bar last night, we’ll go with it was a good night in the bar…. obviously. 😜

So, it was off to the course after a short explanation of the day ahead, Roy & I headed down to to our beat the pro hole, but managed to play a quick 3 hole warm up before the guys got to our hole. 

The beat the pro hole was sponsored by one of the sponsors Taittinger Champagne, where they play their better ball against our’s with their handicap allowance & before the challenge they can have a sample from our sponsors. 

We basically play the same hole 10 times over the whole day, on the hole which is 156 yards into the wind, for me a little punched 6 iron and a putt or two or even 3, if we get on the wrong side of the hole. We made 7 pars 2 bogies & 1 birdie & lost 7 times (there was a small gift on offer) handicaps will have to be looked into for next year.😜 

The reports from the guys was, that they really really enjoyed the course and it looked a good test from what I seen of it, in great condition with undulating quick greens. 

A quick “borrel” back in the clubhouse and back to the hotel to calculate the scores (where Roy had that all under control) shower & get ready for dinner & prize giving at Dune Beach a short walk from the hotel. 

The food was fantastic & the wine in full flow, we were now ready for the final prizes to be presented. 

1st place was Xander & Louw                                 Longest Drive was Xander                                       Closest to the Pin was Ton 

Winners of the tournament over the 3 days were DuurzaamGebouw Team 3 Rob & Hans. 

On the first day Frank & Leonie made a draw to see what placed team won the Mystery Cup, they drew ball 11 so the team that finished in 11th place won the Mystery Cup & that was team 2 beat Jos & Jeroen. 

We are flying back tomorrow morning and with the clocks going forward tonight it’s gonna be a really short night. 

Congratulations to all winners over the 3 days & hope everyone had a great time meeting new people, making new friends & playing 3 fantastic golf courses. 

Thanks to the crew Frank, Leonie, Roy Dominique & Floris…. you guys are great!!!

Till the Mystery Cup 2018 where the location will be again a…………Mystery 

Mystery Cup Day 2

After long day…. and a short night;) it was upto the club early to prepare everything for the players this morning. We are with a crew of 6 (Frank, Leonie, Dominque, Floris, Roy & myself). Lots to do before everyone arrives… buggies, clubs, scorecards, food etc etc. 

First bus arrived around 10, so Roy & I can help anyone on the range with some tips & tricks. Roy at one end of the range & I at the other trying to pass on some words of wisdom before heading out on the course. 

We are playing Espiche GC today, a course up in the hills around 20 mins away from our base in Lagos. It’s a fairly tight undulating course with no room to miss the fairway…. basically if you miss the fairway you lose your ball & one team had lost 15 balls in there first 9. 😜

Roy & I go around and play against teams for beat the pro for a beer. Today we are playing a Mystery Scramble…..everyone hits their tee shots, they swap balls for their 2nd shot, then swap back for their 3rd and then play from their 3rd shot the same Texas Scramble rules. Interesting format, but a lot of fun & keeps everyone on their toes. 

After the warming up it was back to the clubhouse for all info regarding today’s golf format and a team foto on the putting green. 

We have several VIP teams in the competition along with sponsors who are playing together today with a some little extra’s on the course. 

The course is up in the hills & is a sort eco course where they are not aloud to spray chemicals on the course & use a limited amount of water due to the lack of water in the area, the course a good test for us and the greens a little bumpy….the club has a lot of foreign members that have moved to Portugal from other parts of Europe, the clubhouse has a British feel about it with lots of things that you see back home. 

Gerard & Eugene from the team DuurzamGebouw are walking up the Kilimanjaro later this year for charity so we set up a little challenge so we could raise a little extra money towards the charity. From the terrace in the clubhouse try to play a pitch to a pool 30 yards away with €50 to enter, great fun with mishits rattling around the clubhouse…. “lucky for us that there were no windows broken”​ unfortunately nobody pitched it in the pool but Patrick Hekkert being a great sport having 5 goes at €50 a shot.  

​​
The winners today were one of the DuurzaamGebouw teams with Rob & Hans taking the day prize and are now nicely placed in the overall tournament. 

​Special mention for the Birthday boy Melle Tucker….. exciting week for Melle with Leonie having an emergency plan to get him back The Netherlands quick because his wife is due to give birth to there first child this week… no news yet so hopefully she can hold on till Sunday when we get back.  ​
Just had to put this in

We were playing pool in the hotel bar with some of the guys and just look at the state of Kjel trying some yoga moves to get in position to play a shot. 
Roy has been suffering with a terrible headache and is really struggling & is straight to bed, hopefully he’s fit in the morning for our beat the pro challenge on hole 23 (3 9 hole loops)

Tomorrow our last round at we are playing the highly rated Palmares course with 9 holes in the trees & our 2nd 9 a links type course. 

Gonna be a good one😉

Mystery Cup 2017

It’s that time of year again…. the Mystery Cup 2017.  The Mystery Cup is golf event where “business meets golf” consisting of players in a team from all over the Netherlands organized by the Bcause events company. 

The players have no idea where the Mystery location is until they arrive at the airport check in desk on the morning of departure….. ok ok there are lots of guess work to where we are going, some players trying to get a one up by looking at airport departures flights and illuminating locations but that’s just guess work. The whole week is a Mystery!!!! Mystery location, Mystery hotel, Mystery golf courses, Mystery restaurants, Mystery winners etc etc etc. 

At the airport Frank ten Bockem from Bcause will draw a ball out the hat and keep that number secret & at the end of the week that’ll be the winner of the Mystery Cup.

This year Leonie from Bcause and I came a day early to get stuff organized. 

As usual my small frame 😜 had loads of leg room on the 3 hour flight to the Mystery location. 

So, after a long day of visiting golf courses, collecting scorecards, speaking to pro’s & general managers we got everything organized and ready for the 20 teams coming early on the morning flight from Rotterdam. 

THEY’RE ON THEIR WAY. 

So, here we are 1st day Mystery Cup 2017 & the Mystery location is……. …….. Portugal!!!!!!

The weather forecast is, well let’s just say…. em, meant to be not to good….but waking up this morning…..it’s not to bad. 

Everyone checked in back in Rotterdam and they’re on their way to Portugal. 

Everything organized here at the course and today we’re playing Quinta do Lago, a well known course in Europe where the Portugal Open has been held several times. 

Today we are playing Texas Scramble & after a quick word from Frank we are ready to go……

Quinta South is a fantastic course and would recommend anyone to come and play here….. awesome!!!!

The scoring was really good and a few teams had more than 50 points and the day winners were Team More….. 

Then back to hotel to check in  Lagos at Villa Galie. 

And a long night in the bar….

Tomorrow we are playing Espiche Golf Club. https://www.facebook.com/garry.jack.9/posts/10210519943293711

Greg Norman Junior Invitational at Myrtle Beach USA

On our way home 

Sunday 

So, we’re heading home today & it’s gonna be a long one. We had to be ready at 10:30 to get the shuttle to the airport, so we decided to finish our week in Myrtle Beach the way we started it by having breakfast up at the Cracker Barrel. This is fantastic place with a shop at the front & a restaurant at the back, open from 6 in the morning till 10 at night, we both went for

  Grandpa’s Country Fried Breakfast.                   

Two eggs* cooked to order with Grits, Sawmill Gravy, homemade Buttermilk Biscuits, real butter and the best Preserves, Jam n’ Apple butter (on request) we could find. Served with Fried Apples or Hashbrown Casserole and Chicken Fried Chicken or Country Fried Steak.       

We went for the steak & for 9 bucks it was deeeeeelicious!!!!

A short walk back to get the bus & we were heading to airport, with us in the shuttle were Jeremy & his mother from Austria, it was a nice drive that took about 40 mins, when we arrived last week it was getting dark so you couldn’t see much, with it now being daylight there seemed an endless amount of golf courses, restaurants, adventure golf. We went past a PGA Tour superstore that was not far being the size of the IKEA.       

On arriving at the airport we were greeted at the front door by a sign, thankfully Rick had left his at home 😜We got checked in and made sure we never had any of these at security, We headed for Nacho Hippo’s for a drink before our 1:24 flight to Philadelphia (we bumped into several other players from the tournament at the airport & our roommates at the start of the week had their flight to Charlotte cancelled, so they’re trip was going be very long ). 

On Sunday in America the whole country stops for the football 🏈 not ⚽️, everyone is right into it…. so it’s church in the morning then watch the football the rest of the day. It was a short flight up to Phili and we were there at 3 o’clock, but our 9pm scheduled flight to Amsterdam was delayed until 11:05pm. We grabbed some lunch at one of the bars & watch the football 🏈 on one of there many tv’s

This was a cool bar as you place your order  with an iPad, I had a pint of the usual with mac & cheese, Rick created his own burger & chips with a coke.                             

With having so much time we headed out of the airport to catch a cab 😜 to go downtown Phili, we headed for 16th & Cheshnut seemingly to place to go, so we were told. It was a great sight driving in to the center with the skyline of the city.We walked around for a couple of hours trying to perfect our American “how you doin”  accent and were in awe of the buildings & skyscrapers. We got back to airport for around 6:30 and wandered thru the huge airport & ended up back at our favourite iPad bar to watch the Cowboys against the Bucs (another football 🏈 game).                      We got to our gate in plenty time where we found out we weren’t sitting beside each other I was in 13 E & Rick in 34 D and the plane was full. It was a small plane with 3 seats on each side and it was jammed, the German guy I was sitting beside who had been traveling for the past 48 hours was furious at the size of aircraft. (unlucky for Rick the guy sitting at the window must of eaten some that didn’t agree with him and hueyed (was sick)  over himself and needed to get the toilet quick. After checking on Rick a couple of times to see if he was alright he was long gone in the land of nod, we arrived back in Schipol after a 6 1/2 hour flight to be welcomed by Herman & Monique waiting for us.  Back in the Nertherlands. It was a great week that went past way to quickly, it was great to be in & about a top junior tournament organised by the Greg Norman Champions Academy, a fantastic academy,  run by some of the most friendly & helpful people if ever met. 

Also the Barefoot GC who were too extremely helpful & too all volunteers that helped on the course as well as of it. It was also great to be away with Rick for a week & we both learned a lot and will look back on this as a valuable experience.               

A massive thanks……a real massive thanks to Herman & Monique for giving me this opportunity to accompany Rick to the other side of the pond….. I’m just glad that I brought him back in one piece or is it that he brought me back in one piece😜 either way we’re both happy to be back home. 

Merry Christmas 🎄                                               &                                                                              A Happy  New  Year.                                      

Rick & Garry 

PS I wonder if the Aussies are home 😉