MPGT SEASON SUMMARY
The onset of Coronavirus caused several of our scheduled tournaments to either be postponed or cancelled but with golf getting the go ahead from the government. Some rapid reorganisation took place and our season kicked off with a one day event at the Bransford golf club in Worcester on the 25th June. The course was in great condition and one under par rounds of 71 saw Shaun Ball and Ian Roper take joint top spot. The club and staff supported the tournament tremendously and a two day event with special rates at the on course hotel is a strong possibility for next season.We then moved on to Olton Golf Club for our second one day event where the rapid speed of the greens caught out most of the players. Taking a break from the champions tour Paul Broadhurst took first spot with Richard O Hanlon with two under par 68s. Playing his first event of the season, eventual order of merit winner Gary Wolstenholme and fellow legends tour player Paul Streeter tied 3rd with even par 70s.Thanks to the generous sponsorship of John Waters we travelled to Leeds to play our first major of the season. The first round at Nigel Sweets’ Wyke Ridge, the second at former Ryder cup venue Moortown. Befitting the stature of the tournament, legends tour school card winner, Andy Raitt prevailed in a play off with David Copsey when both tied on fantastic 5 under 138 totals. The tournament was played for the Gordon Brand memorial trophy in honour of the former Ryder Cupper who sadly passed away a few days earlier.Our next event saw us return to old favourite Kingsthorpe. Newcomer Simon McGreal taking the title by one shot from Andy Raitt. Though not the longest course we play, strong winds meant Simon’s two over par 140 total was enough to leave a strong field trailing.The following day we moved to former European tour venue Collingtree Park where an excellent 6 under par 66 from Richard O Hanlon pushed last years OOM winner Mike Watson into second. The players then enjoyed a delicious barbecue. This is another venue we hope to return to in 2021.Our next tournament meant a trip back to an old favourite Forest Hills, unfortunately clashes with regional events meant a depleted field.Despite a storm delay of 45 minutes in the first round the course stood up well to the elements. Gary Wolstenholme taking the spoils with an excellent 70-71, 3 under total, with Nigel Sweet finishing second on 144. Mark Spooner shooting the low round of the tournament, a 69, to jump into third place.We then travelled to two of Worcestershire’s finest for a two day event. The first round at regular venue Stourbridge, followed by the second at the magnificent Blackwell Golf Club. Ian Roper and David Copsey sharing the victory with 3 under 137 totals. We were extremely well looked after at both clubs and our tour was well received, especially by Blackwell which traditionally has always been very exclusive. A good relationship has been formed and this bodes well for a possible two day tournament at this Open regional qualifying venue.The next day we stayed in Worcestershire for a one day tournament at the Droitwich Golf Club. Paul Broadhurst geared up for a return to the States with a brilliant 3 under 67 in difficult conditions, finishing 3 ahead of Jimmy Murphy and Gary Wolstenholme.So to Richmond, for what turned out to be our last event of the season. We usually play this event earlier in the season but the golf course was still in excellent condition. As a thank you to the club and its members we began with a Pro Am, Paul Streeter firing a brilliant 65 to take the individual prize. The main event was taken by three time challenge tour winner Phil Archer with rounds of 71-66 for a 3 under 137 total pipping Simon McGreal and former European tour player Rob Coles by two shots. A huge thank you must go to Tamsin Loke for her continued extremely generous sponsorship. It is no coincidence that the best two tournaments we play every year are Richmond and of course this years much missed San Lorenzo where Tamsin’s attention to detail comes to the fore. Oh, of course Rob has a lot to do with it as well.Finally the numbers for this season were encouraging and the tour seems to be growing. In 2020 we paid out more money to more players than ever before. We expect this trend to continue to grow.Your committee members Rob Hunter, Charles Haynes, Mark Spooner, Ian Roper and of course Mike Best are already working behind the scenes to put together a schedule for 2021 with more and even better events. This of course will be to no avail if support is limited. Please abide by the entry criteria and try to enter and pay as soon as possible, a healthy looking entry sheet encourages others.May I remind all members that no one is paid or earns in anyway from the MPGT, we are all like minded volunteers. Although getting on ! we are still keen to play and compete.
To our sponsors, Tamsin Loke, John Waters and of course Nigel Freemantle of brand fusion a huge thank you for your continued support. And to all the clubs that welcomed our tour in such a difficult year.
Let’s hope we get back to some sort of normality next season and the tour goes from strength to strength.