Welcome to our Julynewsletter.
I am writing this in Torino the early part of our Piedmont, Italian Tour. I know I have many times praised Italian Golf, but believe me, it gets better and better. Our first 3 days spent at the Bogogno Resort has probably exposed the best 36 holes of holiday golf I know, and I would include Predator Ridge in British Columbia (a great favourite of our Canadian clientele) and Fancourt in that! Have a look at the Golf Tour report in the blog.
Not quite the 5 star accommodation perhaps, but very very comfortable and fabulous golf. The setting, course design and condition really are from the top drawer. A report on the full tour will appear shortly.
Meanwhile, back on the Professional Tour, Koepka was an impressive, well deserved winner of the US Open and later this month the golfing worlds eyes will be on Royal Birkdale for The Open Championship. In my humble opinion possibly the best Open venue, although now Muirfield has joined the modern world and is back on the rota, others may argue otherwise My rather poor golf of latter years would make anybody wonder if it ever happened, but with an opening nine of one under par 34, I once saw my name on the top of the leader board at the 1978 PGA Championship. I believe I’m correct in saying it was the first European Tour win of Nick Faldo. it was the last main stream tournament I played in and his and my careers took rather different directions!
I wonder if we will have another new major winner making it 8 first timers in succession? I rather doubt it. It’s a great test and I think one of the more experienced players with previous Open experience there will come out on top. I said after his win at the Masters, Garcia might well add a couple more Majors to his tally fairly quickly, a bit like Harrington did – coincidentally, following up his USPGA win with his second major the last time it was played at Royal Birkdale, and I quite fancy Garcia here, especially if the wind blows. Could we possibly see another last day shoot out between him and Justin Rose, who shot to fame as a 17 years old amateur at the same venue?Probably too much of a fairy tale to hope for, but he must have good memories.
My next tours are the two Lincolnshire Tours featuring Woodhall Spa. Both sold out, but due to a cancellation Iain informs me there are two places available on the first one commencing 30th of July.
Anyone attending, don’t forget to sharpen up your sand play before hand. Wide stance, ball a little forward, hands a little back, and a FULL, aggressive swing both ways, keeping the weight favouring your left side throughout. If you don’t, bring a bucket and spade, because you will be in Woodhall’s bunkers a long time!
With the Open at Birkdale hoving into view, we really are reaching the height of the British summer. I’m not thinking of my DSG Tenerife trip in November quite yet, but let’s face it the nights are drawing in so it is moving further forward in my mind!
One of my up and coming students, Jack Hawksby gave me a nice start to the Open as he won one of the regional qualifiers at Sandy Lodge with a sizzling 67.
This then put him into the pre qualifier joining some experienced players from the Challenge and European Tours. Many of you may of seen that even the great Ian Poulter had to qualify for a place, which he did with aplomb at Woburn. Young Jack (still a teenager at 19) played at the superb Hollinwell in Nottingham and after a good opening round of 70 was in the hunt for one of the three spots available. Sadly he ran out of steam in the 2nd round, but certainly a great experience and he acquitted himself well in a strong field. I mentioned to him that one of his fellow competitors, Steve Webster has played on the Tour longer than Jack has been alive!
As David mentioned, there are some great players in excellent form eyeing up this year’s Open. I too like the look of Sergio, but have decided to plump for Tommy Fleetwood, who as they now say is “trending”. Having contended well in the US Open and then winning the recent French Open, I think the stars are now aligning for Tommy, so fingers crossed for him. This is a link to a piece that I did on his swing for Golf Monthly.
Having been at several professional events this year, it is interesting watching them warm up prior to their round. I know it is a favourite hobby horse of David’s and mine but a proper loosen up really sets you up for your game. Sadly sitting drinking cappuccino 5 minutes before starting, doesn’t count :-). Certainly some stretches and a few shots in a net if there is one handy and a couple of chip shots, some long and short putts as you may well be facing some of these quite early in your round! I can’t promise this guarantees success, but you will improve your odds of succeeding and that is a good thing.
Enjoy your golf in the lovely weather we are having and let’s hope it holds out for the Open.
Good luck with your golf
I trust that you are well and enjoying Wimbledon, the cricket and of course the imminent build up to The Open.
Further to my recent email regarding the trips to Prague in September and Tavira in October, I am pleased to report that both of these trips are now proceeding. Over the last 18 months or so, hotels in the popular golf holiday destinations, such as Spain and Portugal, have become increasingly demanding in terms of wanting to know about final numbers many months in advance.
This is because of the relative collapse of the demand for Turkey and North Africa and the resulting surge in demand for Portugal and Spain. With demand for rooms now exceeding supply at the busy times of the year, the hotels are trying to establish accurate booking numbers far in advance; hence the occasional email that I need to send out requesting interest for certain trips!
In terms of the weeks ahead, we do still have three places available on the 30th July Lincolnshire Golf Tour. August though has proved immensely popular this year, and all four events that we are running, are currently fully booked. For September, we still have places available for the Reunion weekend, the Cork Golf Week and the Prague Golf Week, should these be of interest. Similarly in October and November, there are places available for all four of the European events taking place, although the number of places for the Tenerife Golf & Coaching Week, which commences on the 4th November, are now beginning to dwindle. If this particular week is of interest, please let me know.
Very shortly, we will be launching three further events for the March to May 2018 period. We are also finalising the UK programme for 2018, which will again provide a combination of coaching events as well as the UK Golf Tour events. Please keep an eye out too for the 2018 Italian tour, which will be to Lake Como in September 2018. I did also mention previously that the 2018 November long-haul tour would be to Mauritius. However, with the cheapest 5-star hotel single room supplement weighing in at an eye-watering 240 Euro’s a night (and others at over 300 Euro’s a night), we have had to ‘pass’ on the Mauritius plan. In its place though, is a rather exciting destination … New Zealand, and for three weeks. The details will follow fairly shortly, as we want to provide as much lead-time as possible for this trip.
Have an excellent month ahead and enjoy the drama of The Open in a couple of weeks’ time.
With best regards
Barney and I are planning to visit the Open on the Thursday as you get a chance to see more players, with hopefully less crowds. This plan definitely worked at the BMW Championship and we were right next to the bunker with the Brandon Grace “incident”. Hopefully, there won’t be any controversy at the Open and I am really looking forward to it as there are some great players taking part.
We still seem to be having a few issues with the enquiry forms on the website, so if you do not receive an email with the details you have entered, please give us a call and let us know what happened so that we can resolve the issue, thank you.
Hope you are all enjoying your golf wherever you are.
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