Market Rasen Golf Club: Handicaps tumble at Audi Cup birdie bonanza

Steve Maplethorpe led a top three who all earned handicap reductions at the Audi Cup EMN-180207-163136002
Steve Maplethorpe led a top three who all earned handicap reductions at the Audi Cup EMN-180207-163136002

There was more exceptional scoring at Market Rasen Golf Club last week when it hosted the Audi Cup.

The cup was the third consecutive medal competition at the club to see its winner subject to an Exceptional Scoring Handicap Reduction.

This time it went to 14-handicapper Steve Maplethorpe who carded a superb round of nett 66 to move to category two off a 12 handicap.

Also shooting nett 66 was Bob Davison, who marked his return to form by finishing one shot ahead of third-placed John Boulton, both taking a shot off their handicaps.

Four golfers shot nett 70, but the ever-steady Steve Hewish claimed fourth place by dint of a better back nine from Ron Ryan, Matt Codd and Paul Baker.

Newly-returned member Joe Osbourne claimed the best gross prize with a three-over par 74.

* On a gloriously sunny Sunday, 39 men entertained their guests in the annual Invitation Day betterball stableford.

After the first eight returned cards it was clear that the pairs would have to score well into the 40s to be in the prizes.

With 47 points, newcomer Matt Shand and his father Stuart were the worthy winners, and Daryl Parkinson and S. Reville claimed second place with 45 points.

Four pairs carded 43 points and were subject to a back-nine countback for the remaining two prizes.

Third was past captain Guy Hardcastle with Glyn Thorpe (back nine 23), and fourth was a very welcome place for 2003 club captain Des Cawsey with Stuart Lincoln (back nine 22).

Then came Richard and S. Marshall (back nine 21), and Steve Ayres with M. Lewis (back nine 20).

* With the club championships looming, a large field of 97 competed in a stableford competition for the Torrens Bowl.

The recent heatwave continued, and although the greens remain lush and true, due to the efforts of the greenstaff, all the fairways are rock-hard and produced some unpredictable bounces.

There were a record 15 birdie twos, mostly at the par three fifth hole, and the five prize winners were the only competitors to better the par 36 points. Morning players Tim Brumpton and Alan Wormall set the early pace with 38 and 37 respectively, but they ended up fourth and fifth as later players submitted their scores.

Graham Pearce had the better back nine off 38 to finish third, and junior Tom Carter claimed second place after carding a splendid 40 points.

But Mark Hunter submitted an unassailable 46 points off handicap 17, and will enter the championship off 13 having earned another Exceptional Scoring Reduction.

* On a perfect summer’s day, 20 pairs of golfers from Market Rasen’s ladies’ section turned out for the Ping Trophy competition.

This is a national competition with the two top teams from each club going on to a final at Gainsborough Golf Club, the headquarters of Ping.

Thanks to excellent course conditions the scores were high, with 13 of the 20 teams recording better-than-par even though they were playing off 9/10ths handicap.

The outright winners were Sara Edgerton and Linda Reeve who came in with 44 stableford points.

Three teams registered 43 points, with Pam Ross and Lynn Patrick taking second place on countback from Helen Gibbard and Kim Robinson.

Angela Moore and Hilary Tuhey were pushed into fourth place, also on countback, and Bridget Holmes and Aileen Sellars one shot behind in fifth place.

* The previous day a Market Rasen ladies’ team travelled to Ashby Decoy Golf Club for a friendly match.

Again the conditions were perfect, but the home side proved to be the stronger, winning three-and-a-half to one-and-a-half.