Saturday was Mid-Summer’s Day at Lurgan Golf Club and for once golfers enjoyed all of the warm sunshine you might expect from a competition of that name.
The competition was for the attractive prizes on offer in the annual Royal British Legion event and many players featured around the top of a very packed leaderboard.
Normally remote greens were brought into the range of practically all competitors as sun-dried fairways added many yards to any well struck drive and it was little surprise to see most of the main prizes going to higher handicappers.
Three players returned 40pts with the top prize going to the consistent Maurice Turnbull playing off 23.
No score at the 2nd was followed by a triple bogey at the next but he recovered to reach the turn with a respectable 17pts and 23pts coming home secured his first victory of the season.
Second place went to Conal McAshea off 28. He too failed to score at the 2nd hole but then recovered in similar fashion and can look to a trio of double bogeys on the back 9 for his failure to claim the top prize.
David O’Neill continues to enjoy his unexpected and dramatic resurgence in form and he lifted yet another prize this season by taking third place off 23. He made few mistakes but will no doubt have many stories of the ‘ones that got away’.
It has been a while since Norris Thompson featured in the prizes but such has been his form of late that a prize winning performance has seemed almost inevitable. He duly obliged on Saturday by taking 4th place with 39pts off 20 and will be looking forward to the big events coming up with some optimism.
The gross prize went to David Sutton who went round in 72 with bogeys at the 11th, 13th and 14th and a birdie at the 16th.
Nicholas Campbell took the low section with 39pts closely followed by Adam McCleary and William McMillan, each of whom had 38. Nicholas had 3 birdies in his round but double bogeys at the two hardest holes on the course, 6 and 11, were to deny him a long overdue outright victory. Young Adam is really on the crest of a wave and he has seen his handicap tumble by 5 shots from 15 to 10 in the last two months,. William’s score would suggest that his fourball’s methodical pre-round routine is indeed bearing fruit, but Peter Gordon and John Menary have yet to produce the goods to provide confirmation.
The middle section went to Ian Harrison with 38pts edging out Noel Stewart and Jim Farrell on 37. Terry McCrory and Richard Dawson each had 38pts to top the high section with Terry nicking it on the back 9.
Shot of the day came at the 11th where Eamon Lynch hit a 5 iron to record his first hole-in-one. Although he double bogeyed the 6th he covered the other 17 holes in just one over and there is little doubt this young, category 1 golfer can look forward to another very successful season. Congratulations are also due to Mark Vaughan who recorded the day’s only other eagle when he holed out for a 2 at the 10th.