Monday, 12 January 2015

2014 - my golfing year pt1

Back in January, I had committed my thoughts to blog about what the golfing year would have in store for me. Now, re-reading that entry, some 11 months later, it's interesting to see what transpired and, as I will outline here, how many great things happened that could not have been predicted. I hope you enjoy reading it.

Sunday, 12 October 2014

Harey Cup 2014 - Day 3

A relatively subdued Saturday night out in one of Marbella's finest tapas restaurants (best patatas bravas in Spain, allegedly) was, quite literally, the calm before the storm. I must have written a million times that superlatives are very easily overused, but 'biblical' wouldn't really do justice to the volume of water dumped on the Costa del Sol in the early hours of Sunday morning.

Harey Cup 2014 - day 2

The morning after the night before. The previous evening was a distant memory for (most of) the touring party when the sun crept over the mountains to signal the second day of the Harey Cup.

Saturday, 11 October 2014

Harey Cup 2014 - day 1

It's here. After many weeks of anticipation, build-up and excitement, 10 intrepid golfers were ready to take on whatever challenges La Quinta could throw at them. The 2014 Harey Cup was underway.

Monday, 6 October 2014

2013 Harey Cup memories

I had a bit of a play with a new video app and I put together a little collection of snapshots from the 2013 Harey Cup at La Cala Resort, Spain. Enjoy...




Friday, 3 October 2014

Harey Cup 2014 - preview

One week. Just seven short days until the Harey Cup starts for the seventh time of asking so I thought I would do a little preview of what's to come.

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

It's very quiet...too quiet

I've offered more than one of these half-arsed apologies about lack of blog-tivity in the past, so it's high time for another.

I've been pretty busy - work, family, work, holidays. And some work.

A bit of golf has been played since the culmination of the golfathon in mid-June, including an extremely enjoyable three days in the garden of England, taking in the two courses at Dale Hill as well as Chart Hills.

Whilst I certainly didn't threaten any record books at Dale Hill, I did manage to break 80 for the first time in more than a year at Chart Hills - it was a thoroughly enjoyable round and would have been even more impressive had I not kicked off with a fugly triple, not to mention the two doubles for good measure

What's coming up? Well, as documented in great depth last year, I am just four weeks away from the next instalment of the Harey Cup - Spain is, again, the country of choice; La Quinta, near Puerto Banus (that bastion of taste & elegance) the venue for four days of white-hot Ryder Cup-style golf...plus some beers.

More to follow on this extravaganza in due course.



I am the Part-Time Golfer

Thursday, 19 June 2014

They think it's all over...

After many months of planning, changes to format, personnel and even location, the great charity golfathon of 2014 is finished. Having had a few days to recover and reflect on what happened, it's now time to share a summary of events.

Thursday, 5 June 2014

Golfathon 2014 - The Final Countdown

The clock is ticking. The wait is almost over. We are into the final week before the start of what is probably the greatest golfing challenge in the history of the world, EVER.

OK, maybe that's a slight exaggeration, but it's certainly fair to say that what we are taking on is no mean feat, especially as we have got closer to the kick off and the reality of what we are attempting becomes apparent.

The major piece of news follows on from the last entry, and concerns the discovery of a clash at one of the venues. After some careful consideration & discussion, we took the decision to abandon the plan of having a Team Bedfordshire and bring that team together with the other two groups at Mid Sussex GC, so we will be all in one location.  This was not an easy decision to make and I will always be grateful for the support, interest and involvement of Julie at Colmworth GC but, in the circumstances, it was absolutely the right call to make. Habing experienced the Macmillan Longest Day challenge in 2011, I certainly wouldn't have enjoyed that if we had been 'sharing the billing' with another group, regardless of their goals and fundraising activities - with that in mind, we thought it best that we secure the collaboration & camerarderie of having all three teams together by clearing the path for the folks at Colmworth.

Equipment needs have largely been met, the final shopping list discussed this morning and the logistics of getting us all together are basically there. I will be trying to source some last-minute additions to the stash whilst in New York this week but I think we are pretty much sorted.

We are also pleased to receive confirmation from On Course Foundation that one of their members, Mark Walters, will be joining us from 10am on Thursday. It will be a humbling experience to play golf with this man and hear some first-hand details about the work that the charity do for these folks.

Finally, the regular sponsorship beg - we continue to make solid progress towards our target but there is, as ever, a long way to go and we need every penny we can get. Please, if you can spare anything at all we would be eternally grateful - www.bmycharity.com/golfathon is the link. Thank you.

If anything else crops up between now and Thursday, I'll be sure to let you know. Wish us luck.

I am the Part-Time Golfer

Saturday, 31 May 2014

Weekly golfathon update - <2 weeks to go

I did give you fair warning that there was a good chance the regularity of updates would fade as time went on - it's been nearly two weeks since the last entry and, with the event creeping ever closer, it's time for some more info.

Main news has been the astonishing progress made on sponsorship, particularly in the last 48 hours. Having ambled along our 'Road to £10k' since kicking off the requests for cash, there was a genuine concern that we might fall embarrassingly short. Thankfully, those fears are proving to be unfounded, due to the generosity and willingness of so many people to dip into theit pockets and support this fabulous cause.

A flurry of individual donations took us through the £1000 barrier early on Thursday, followed by the first of the matched funding pledges from team member's employers. I must say a massive thank you to the folks at Santander and Legal & General for their extraordinary donations which, along with further individual support has pushed us very close to the £4000 mark. We are all so grateful for everyone who has donated although we still have a long way to go to hit the target! The fundraising page is www.bmycharity.com/golfathon and anything you can spare goes a long way.

The other news is publicity - I would also like to thank EM Acoustics, the excellent loudspeaker manufacturer, who very kindly provided us with somewhere in the region of 1000 professional flyers to hand out & post through letterboxes. The folks who run EM have been great supporters of my absurd charity golfing ventures and their generosity on this occasion is fantastic - thanks!

Now on to the topic of practice - since our 27 hole get-together at Farnham Park a couple of weeks ago, little has happened from a personal perspective until right now, where I am midway through a two day, two round trip to Royal Birkdale. With (yet another) trip to the US due next week, this represents the last chance for any semblance of practice before the off.

Ah.

Anyhoo, the Sussex folks took it upon themselves, having had a second 27 hole day immediately after ours, to get some night golf practice in on Thursday. The feedback was that it was an 'interesting' experience, made all the more challenging with the lack of glow sticks on the flags and, additionally, glowing & flashing balls that didn't - or at least, not for very long. Some equipment challenges to test us to the very last minute then.

The final thought for this entry is a bit of a dilemma (a rhetorical one really - please don't write in) - I discovered late yesterday that, on the same day as the golfathon, there will be another group completing the Macmillan Longest Day challenge (72 holes in the one day) at Colmworth GC. I don't believe there will be a logistical problem in terms of getting in each other's way, but I am concerned about the impact on the attention & awareness that having two golfing marathons running simultaneously will have. I have put this situation to the while team and, interestingly, there is a groundswell of opinion towards bringing all three teams together in the one venue in Sussex.

Clearly there is a logistical hurdle or three to overcome (not least the publicity associated with Colmworth and not wanting this potential change to come across as a dummy-spit) but it's an unexpected topic to mull over and, even after sleeping on it last night, I am no clearer in my mind or nearer to a decision about what to do.

I am the Part-Time Golfer