Wednesday, July 25, 2018

North tournament news from Robin Wilson

Chris Mailley joins Sinclair Cup's 

two-time winners' list

Left: Chris Mailley with the Sinclair Cup. Right: Royal Dornoch Golf Club captain Alan Ramsey

Gifted to the Royal Dornoch Golf Club by long serving Golspie draper R F Sinclair in 1960, the names of many double winners have been inscribed on what is considered the most prestigious stroke play tournament silverware to win in Sutherland, namely the Sinclair Cup

To name but a few, “two time” familiar winners, Willie Skinner (Dornoch), Jim Miller (Brora),  Stewart Shaw (Dornoch), Stewart Wilson (Inverness), Kevin Matheson (Dornoch), Dougal Chalmers (Panmure), and Jim Scott (Murcar). Adding his name as a two time winner last weekend was Chris Mailley (Dornoch). Brora's Miller was the most often winner with thirteen between 1965 and 1998, but no golfer has completed a hatrick.

Mailley's first triumph came four years ago and with the cup won by visiting golfers for the last two years, Bryan Fotheringham (Forres) and Lewis Reid (Fortrose and Rosemarkie) the cup looked destined to leave again when a four under par 66 led after the first round. It was recorded by the lowest handicap player in the capacity field of 72,  David Corben who plays of +4. Only one playing competitor in the high quality field held a double figure handicap!

A group of ten members from the Hindhead Golf Club in Surrey were spearheaded by the plus four handicapper David Corben who bottled three outward half and two inward half birdies, 1st 4th 8th 13th and eighteenth holes with just one bogey at the notorious “Foxy” in halves of 32 and 34 for a superb 66 to lead a Mailley first round card of one over par 71 and a one under par 69 from USA teenager Aidan Volmer (17) from Phoenix,  Arizona.

Lewis Reid (Fortrose and Rosemarkie) saw his grip loosened on the Sinclair Cup after an opening round of 76. A double bogey five on the par three sixth hole then a bogey six on the par five 12th before closing with bogey five in halves two halves of 38 that left the holder ten shots behind the first round leader.

Reid's Fortrose clubmate Alan Cameron stayed in the mix with a first round 72 (38/34)  as also did North Youth Champion Michael Schinkel (36/36) and William Short (Royal Dornoch and Longniddry) (35/37).

When Mailley opened his second round with a birdie three and Corben double bogeyed the par three second hole two shots had been made up by the ninth, Mailley 35, Corben 37. The came the second surge on the back nine by the home member, back to back birdies on eleven and twelve and two more on the 15th and 16th hole. With just the one bogey slip-up at the sixteenth hole it took Mailley  home in 32 and into a tie with the visitor, Mailley 71 and 67, Corben 66 7 72.

Mailley's 36 hole total 138 (71/67) and Corben's 138 (66/72) won the Sinclair Cup on better second round and the first place voucher of £325. Short's equal halves of 35 in round two brought him into third place on 142 (72/70) ahead of Schinkel's 142 (72/70) on the better last nine holes of round 2.

Mailley's voucher increased by £80 when he won the confined to members, Taylor Bullock Salver,  and the outgoing cup holder Lewis Reid's day improved with a card of 68 for the best second round prize voucher.  

Sinclair Cup Results.
138 C Mailley (RDGC) 71/67, D Corben (Hindhead) 66/72.
142 W Short (Longniddry/RDGC) 72/72, M Schinkel (RDGC) 72/72.
143 C Mackay (RDGC) 74/69.
 131 A Mackay (Haggs Castle/RDGC) (5)
 136 C Mackay (RDGC) (5).
 138  A Volmer (USA) (3)
 139  C Sutherland (RDGC) (2)
 140 . L Jennings (Whitemuir) (2)
 Best Scratch round
 68 L Reid (Fortrose and Rosemarkie
 Best Handicap 
67 A Pirie (Milngavie) (3) .
Taylor Bullock Salver 
136 C Mailley (RDGC) 

G K MacKay Foursomes

On the day following the Sinclair Cup David Corben teamed up with his Hindhead club mate Matt Laird to return the low scratch score in the G K MacKay Men's Foursomes event but their nett return could not match that of teenager Aidan Volmer and his father Brian from Phoenix who won the G K MacKay Trophy with a nett 69 from a combined five handicap.

Brain Volmer said after the event that his father had taken him to Dornoch when he was the same age as his son Aidan and was delighted that he was making the return visit with Aidan the see his son in Saturday's handicap prize list and winning together on Sunday was the highlight of their trip to Scotland.

Dornoch and Moray father and son, Gary and Graeme Bethune had the second best scratch score, a 74, and beaten on a last six holes for the trophy was the home partnership of Colin MacKay and Alexander Campbell also a nett 69, off 15. 

Balblair Open Tain 2018

Already the winner of the 2018 Tain Golf Club championship home member Lyle McAlpine (pictured with the trophy) retained the Abdul Ghani Cup in the Balblair Distillery sponsored 36 hole open at Tain last Saturday.

McAlpine had three big threats to his defence and they were all club mates Keiran Mackay, losing finalist in the recent Inverness Four Day tournament, Sean Kennedy, losing finalist to McAlpine in the club championship and former winner Munro Ferries and they finished in this order behind the winner.

McAlpine posted a two under par first round 68 (37/31), his inward half card showing four birdies in succession from the 11th to the fourteenth hole. Keiran MacKay trailed by one after a two birdie outward half of 33 then beginning his inward run with birdie came home in 36 for 69.

After a morning card of equal halves of 36 for 72 Sean Kennedy had to wait until the afternoon before he got under par. While Munro Ferries was as steady as ever with halves of 35 &36 for his 71.

In round two McAlpine again 37 to reach the turn but again he found the birdies on the back nine with repeats at the 13th and 14th holes. But he had to wait until the final green to record a three under inward 32, just one more then in the morning for his 69 and winning 137 aggregate.

Mackay repeated his 69 this time with halves of 34 and 35 for second scratch place but then was rewarded with the Rutherford Trophy for the lowest nett aggregate 136, just edging out Kennedy's net 137. 

The third scratch voucher went to Munro Ferries who added a second round 72 to his first round 71 as his elder brother Billy who shot a first round 71 to be in the mix faltered on the back nine of his second round. His outward 37 kept pace with the leaders but two sixes on the home half extended his inward count to 40 and 77. Left in a tie for second handicap place with club mate Graham Mackintosh, Billy dropped to third on the worst second round card. Mackintosh returning two nett 71s off 3. 



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