With only ten weeks or so left of 2012, I thought I would do a long-overdue update on my 2012 golfing goals. It's been a long time since the last update and a lot has changed since then, so it will be therapeutic to document what has happened and, realistically, what more I can do before 2013 arrives.
Goal #1 - break 70 for 18 holes. As I have written before (and shown via the #showusyournumber trend on Twitter), I have achieved personal best for 18 holes of 70 on two separate occasions, the last of which was August 2011 at Oake Manor GC. When I set these goals for 2012, I held the firm belief that I had the game to break this magical barrier and that it was only a matter of time - keep plugging away at what I knew I could do, not to worry too much and the numbers would come. Unfortunately, since the last update, I have seen my game take a bit of a turn for the worse, particularly in terms of quality off the tee, consistency and stamina. My driver and I are going through a 'rocky patch' and it's a weapon that I am not currently inclined to turn to as a matter of course. This means that I am either further from the green for my approach shots or, with alarming regularity, scooping out from the cabbage following a wayward shot. I know my swing shape has changed and there are some horrible habits which have become ingrained but, frankly, I have neither the time nor the resources to invest in putting it right. This means my goal of breaking 70 feels further away than ever. FAIL.
Goal #2 - play ten rounds during the year. Whilst this may seem like a pretty weak target to set, the recent history suggested that it would still be a tough ask to play more often than every five or six weeks. What I didn't account for, thankfully, was the luck of winning temporary membership at Colmworth GC (bringing three rounds in four weeks), a work trip to New York (bringing three Bethpage rounds in two days) and the preparatory golf leading up to the Tweet Golf Cup in August (bringing five additional rounds over four weeks). All of this has led to my current position of 20 rounds played so far in 2012, which is a healthy over-achievement against target. How much more golf can I get in this year? Weather dependant, of course, but there is a chance of a further two or three rounds I hope. ACHIEVED.
Goal #3 - gain an official handicap. Things have not changed on this since the last update - I felt I had made a modicum of progress early in the year by joining the Golf Club of Great Britain and securing my online handicap but, I have to admit, I haven't submitted any further scorecards to keep this updated. The temporary membership at Colmworth allowed me to generate a short-term handicap to play in competitions (had I been available to play) but I am no closer to having an official CONGU handicap. I want one and I know that I need one if I am to ever take part in the Trilby Tour (realistically 2014 at the earliest) but, for the time being, I am no closer to having a full club membership. FAIL.
Goal #4 - take part in the Tweet Golf Cup. Having been an active participant on Twitter for nearly two years now, I was delighted with the opportunity to put a team together for the inaugural Tweet Golf Cup at Dundonald in August. The trip was a great success, even throwing in some half-decent golf and Never Up Never In managed a respectable fifth place. ACHIEVED.
So, all in all, not a bad return for the year and I am reasonably satisfied. I would certainly have liked to threaten the sub-70 target a bit more than I have done (I've not broken 80 since April) but I can't really complain.
I will certainly set myself some fresh goals for 2013 - I have taken to using GolfShot to record my performances and it's provided some interesting reading for where I can make some improvements, if I ever find the time to practice properly. One of the perils of being a part-timer, I guess.
I am the Part-Time Golfer