Golfers slip into winter

Summer is officially over, according to the Stornoway Golf Club calendar. On a calm day and with conditions almost as good as anything experienced since the season began, the competition for the Jackson Medal brought the curtain down on eighteen hole golf until next April.

Around a quarter of the fifty strong field equalled or bettered par, an indication of the absence of the wind and rain that has been part and parcel of summer golf this year.

Calum Tom Moody has knocked five strokes off his handicap over the summer months, the last of these reductions coming courtesy of another excellent round of nett 65.

Birdies in both halves of his round, on the Memorial and Ditch, were the highlights of a performance that put him into third place.

Cal Robertson was the latest golfer to suffer from the fallout of flight delays, arriving breathless on the tee.

There was no lasting sign of ill effect as Cal went on to take second place with the lowest gross score of the day.

A birdie on the Manor, a bogey on the Ard Choille and seven pars took Cal to the halfway point in level par.

An almost identical inward half, with his birdie coming on the Ranol, resulted in a one over par total and nett 64.

Martin Flett posted the lowest total of the field, nett 64.

He may not have had that figure in his sights after the front nine.

At that stage, Martin was five over par, on track to make buffer zone and keep his handicap of ten intact.

A double bogey on the next hole should have brought on some anxiety but, instead, Martin completed the remaining eight holes in one under par, sinking a birdie putt on the Miller.

That resolute performance takes him tantalisingly close to a single figure handicap.

None of the top three placed golfers had actually qualified for the final; in fact, none of the top sixteen had qualified.

The nett 71 posted by Eddie Rogers proved to be enough to win the Jackson Medal.

It was a much better round than his score might suggest.

Eddie recovered from a quadruple bogey on the opening hole and birdies on the Gunsite and Ranol took him clear of the other qualifiers.

Last week saw the season long matchplay competitions coming to a conclusion. DJ Macleod capped a fine year by winning the Burns Cup, beating Griddy Macleod 3&1 in a closely contested final.

The Bain Cup was won by George Mould, who required an extra hole before finally seeing off the challenge of Stewart Macqueen.

Michael Black completed a strong finish to the season with victory in the Stornoway Cup, defeating Stewart Campbell on the second extra hole.

Ken Galloway played some of his best golf in the Clansman Trophy matches and proved simply too strong for Martin Flett in the final.

Pat Aird and Arthur Macintosh clearly terrified the opposition during their progress to the final of the Consolation Cup, as opponent after opponent conceded without swinging a club in anger.

Marten James and Huw Lloyd took them all the way to the last tee, when a visit out of bounds handed Arthur and Pat a two hole victory.

The Ladies’ Section rounded off the season with the final of the Saturday Medal series. Only three strokes separated the top three, Ann Galbraith winning, ahead of Liz Carmichael in second spot and Jane Nicolson.

John Morrison recorded an excellent nett 64 to win the Junior Medal final. John was also runner-up in the nine hole Medal final, which was won by Ruaraidh Macmillan.

Ruaraidh was also a runner-up, in the Junior Eclectic competition, falling just 0.5 strokes short of winner Andrew Mackenzie.

DJ Macleod won the Galloway Aggregate Trophy, with a total of 384, just one stroke less than runner-up Cal Robertson.

The Perry Eclectic Trophy was won by John R Gillies, his nett 46 a mere 0.7 strokes less than Griddy Macleod.

We understand that John could have gone lower, had that been necessary.

Jane Nicolson won the Ladies’ Eclectic Trophy, with Ann Galbraith close behind in second place.

The focus for the next six months switches to the twelve hole format of Winter League.

There has been a suggestion that the course may be restricted to as few as ten or even eight holes to protect the course, presumably from us hackers, for whom eight holes may often be eight too many.