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The Suffolk Golf Club and Bury St Edmunds Golf Clubs hosts Club Championships events



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After a month of relatively low scoring in competitions at The Suffolk Golf Club, the course struck back in the Club Championships over the weekend of July 2-3, with only one member beating their handicap.

Richard Budgen (pictured inset) has enjoyed a rich vein of form in competitions at the club over the past couple of months and was favourite to take the nett crown again this year – and he did not disappoint. With a two-day score of 66+67=133, he finished 14 shots clear of runner-up Ed Moorem who carded 73+74=147.

A combination of factors contributed to the high scoring. The white tees were well back, the greens were running very fast and the pin placements were deadly, but all of this should be expected for a club championship.

Suffolk Golf Club Championships on the first tee, from left to right: Emilie Thomas, Tish Mortlock, Andrea Leigh, June Smart, June Stocker and Shelia Burns. Picture Chris Boughton
Suffolk Golf Club Championships on the first tee, from left to right: Emilie Thomas, Tish Mortlock, Andrea Leigh, June Smart, June Stocker and Shelia Burns. Picture Chris Boughton

Also there was a strong north westerly wind blowing which made aiming at the pins not a good strategy. Richard told me that he played cautiously by going for the centre of all the greens irrespective of where the pins were positioned – clearly an excellent strategy.

Rhys Nightingale has played superb golf over the past few months and going into the Club Championships his handicap allowance on The Suffolk course was plus 1.

He therefore was unlikely to win the nett competition with the challenging course and weather conditions over the weekend but he romped home in the Gross competition, coming out club champion again by a margin of nine shots (78+74=152) over runner-up Len Hopkinson (83-78=161). Richard Tungate took third place with 80+85=165.

Suffolk Golf Club Championships on the first tee, from left to right: Len Hopkinson, Avril Chapman, Rhys Nightingale, Angie Lewis and Richard Tungate. Picture: Chris Boughton
Suffolk Golf Club Championships on the first tee, from left to right: Len Hopkinson, Avril Chapman, Rhys Nightingale, Angie Lewis and Richard Tungate. Picture: Chris Boughton

Jackie Thomas has been the form member amongst the ladies at The Suffolk this year and she triumphed in both the nett (74+77=151) and the gross (89+92=181) competitions.

Avril Chapman enjoyed a good weekend finishing runner-up in the nett competition and third in the gross (96-95=191). Andrea Leigh came second in the gross and Sheila Burns was third in the Ladies’ Nett competition.

Perry Garrod won the ‘Best of the Rest’ competition on the Sunday for those members who failed to make the cut on the Saturday.

Bury St Edmunds Golf Club

Bury Golf Club Championships, from left to right: Sam Renville, Charlie Goodridge, Guy Lesser, Carmel Plant, Alice Barlow and Jasmine Points. Picture: Matt Alderton
Bury Golf Club Championships, from left to right: Sam Renville, Charlie Goodridge, Guy Lesser, Carmel Plant, Alice Barlow and Jasmine Points. Picture: Matt Alderton

Bury held their Club Championships over the same weekend as The Suffolk, where scoring was also challenging.

Alice Barlow retained the Ladies’ Gross crown with a return of 79+68=147 and Jasmine Points won the Millenium Plate with a nett return of 75+74=149. Mariette Robbertse finished up as runner-up in both the Nett and Gross Ladies’ championship competitions.

Sam Renville is the 2022 men’s champion after carding 72+76=148, followed closely by Ben Coleman with gross 149 and last year’s champion Russell Oakey with 150.

Young Charlie Goodridge took both the nett (Bobby Jones Trophy) and junior crowns with 72+71=143.

Richard Budgen, who is the new Nett champion at The Suffolk Golf Club. Picture: Chris Boughton
Richard Budgen, who is the new Nett champion at The Suffolk Golf Club. Picture: Chris Boughton

Steve Finch was nett runner-up with 144 and Jamie Cooper carded the same score to finished in third spot on countback.

General manager, Mike Verhelst, said at the presentation: “A massive thank you to the greenkeepers, pro shop and bar and catering staff and last but not least David Kerswell for starting all the competitions on both days.”

More than 150 members took part in this year’s championships at the Bury club.

Flempton Golf Club

Bury St Edmunds Golf Club members Trevor Titcombe and Dan Bright played an early evening round of golf at Flempton Golf Club, in the sunshine, last week and like most courses at the moment the extended dry spell provided significant extra run on the fairways.

Trevor contacted me and said he had an outstanding story for my BFP golf article. Amazingly Dan scored a hole-in-one on the 360-yard par 4, 8th hole.

Trevor said that he himself sent his driver tee shot to within 15 yards of the green and was very pleased with his shot but Dan’s drive sailed past Trevor’s.

A pair of Flempton members stood on the 8th green and were stunned to witness the ball roll past them and on into the hole. A very special moment for Trevor to witness and Dan to achieve.