Royal Birkdale Golf Club

Royal Birkdale – 23rd April 2012

It would be hard to top the almost perfect event that was the last Regional Qualifying Tournament for The Golf Club Secretary– 16th Open Championship at Royal Birkdale. Very nearly a record field (only topped by The Berkshire many moons ago), a links in superb condition, sensible tees (!), wonderful golfing weather, exceptional hospitality, almost everyone behaving themselves. Who could ask for more?

We have received many complimentary emails from the competitors and their comments have been passed on to the Club.

Scoring was very good with everyone round in good time, despite the severity of the test. The winner was a ‘New Boy’ to The GCS – Open, Richard West (12) Wrexham, with an excellent score of 36pts (equalled by Neil Tappin of Golf Monthly, off 5). Runner-up was Mick Wain (11) Matlock with 35pts. Third, on countback, was John Holmes (5) Crowborough Beacon on34 pts, from Will Sjoberg (6) Epping; also on 34pts was John Clarke (10) Worsley. The remaining qualifiers on 33pts were Graeme Whitfield (7) Grange over Sands, Dave Sanders (8) Reddish Vale, Allan Rodger (3) Hirsel. On 32pts came Jonathan Gaunt (8), Mick Thorpe (5) Dewsbury and Martyn Senior (5). Our congratulations to all the qualifiers, who are now being tested with a string of questions about their attendance at Royal St. George’s in May.

We are deeply indebted to our host Mike Gilyeat, who was also a ‘qualifier’ on 34pts, but who announced before ‘the off’ that he was unable to attend the Final; our thanks also to his most efficient and courteous staff for their efforts on our behalf. Everyone clearly had a most memorable day. We are equally grateful to the Captain, Committee and Members of Royal Birkdale in allowing us to stage another Qualifying Tournament over their historic links – we will be back! (Please?).

We are deeply indebted to our host Mike Gilyeat, who was also a ‘qualifier’ on 34pts, but who announced before ‘the off’ that he was unable to attend the Final; our thanks also to his most efficient and courteous staff for their efforts on our behalf. Everyone clearly had a most memorable day. We are equally grateful to the Captain, Committee and Members of Royal Birkdale in allowing us to stage another Qualifying Tournament over their historic links – we will be back! (Please?).

We had a full Team of Patrons present; Philip (Sherlock) Vince of Majestic Crystal, Dean (the tie) Poynter of Eagle, Neil Tappin and Alex Narey of Golf Monthly, Richard Barker of TeeoffTimes, Paul Mainstone and George Harvey, making his very welcome debut at a GCS event, of Jonas/Clubminder.

We have also received an email of thanks from Paul Mainstone’s daughter Tabitha, who will attempt the climb to Everest Base Camp in the Summer, to raise money for SPARKS. The competitors at Royal Birkdale raised over £250; go to http://www.justgiving.com/tabitha-mainstone for more information.