Fitz Golf End of Season Day - Hindhead GC
Wednesday 31st October 2018
We arrived at the Golf Club and met up in the Alliss bar for coffee and a bacon roll – and a quick briefing from our starter, Alan Snowball. Fortunately the weather was fine when we teed off and seemed to get better and better during the day. We were very lucky.
After a rather daunting opening drive on the 1st tee – in front of the starter and over an annoying length of heather – we were off on this slightly downhill hole – but still on the upper plateau of the course. But the drive on the 2nd tee plunged us very steeply down to the fairway well below – and we then basically followed heather and tree lined, steep sided valleys for the next eight holes. This section of the course was absolutely magnificent. We did have to climb steeply once to get to the tee for the signature hole - the 6th – the short downhill par 3. Then we followed through the beautiful valleys again – although most of the tee-off areas were elevated.
We then reached the excellent Halfway House – for a quick stop – before playing the second nine – on the upper heathland plateau. Perhaps this second section of the course was not quite so spectacular as the first – but despite the presence of increased amounts of heather and more trees – and more strategically placed bunkers – it was probably slightly easier and generally our scoring was better on this 2nd nine. And we still did have some great views down to the lovely valleys that we’d followed on the first nine – and generally over the beautiful countryside surrounding the course.
I particularly liked the long par 4 12th hole – with an angled hazard of heather short of the green and a severe drop from the fairway down to the putting surface. And also the short par 4, 13th was a great risk and reward hole – and there was a very strong finish on the last two holes – with another daunting tee shot to the sloping and narrow 17th fairway – and then the long par 4 18th – finishing in front of the Clubhouse. I enjoyed this last hole – as for once I hit a good long putt there! But I cannot blame the greens for my putting as they were all in magnificent condition and certainly very quick for the last day of October.
So all in all – it was a great experience for us all – to play this very charismatic and scenic course with so many stand-out holes.
After the round we adjourned to the bar and then went upstairs for a two course carvery lunch – which was also excellent. Then followed the prize giving – and then something of a surprise to me, a very entertaining and informative talk from our winner for the day, David Leakey – especially on the role of Black Rod and with some of his experiences in the role – including an amusing anecdote when Black Rod was stuck in a misbehaving lift in the Houses of Parliament – with the Queen and Prince Philip! We also found out what the golfing nickname for a ‘difficult four footer’ was in Houses of Parliament circles! Thanks very much to David for a great talk.
Then we all departed for home – after a fantastic day out at a really top course. And it was also good that we had so many playing – these Fitz days out at top courses are proving very popular – and they will be continued in the future.
Well played everyone – it was an excellent day at Hindhead – and we look forward to re-convening at Frilford Heath (Red Course) on Wednesday 27th March 2019!
Nearest the pin on the lovely downhill 6th- the signature hole par 3 – Andy Stracey (very close in)
Anyone on the green at the long par3, 8th hole – only John Thornton (a great hit into the strong wind)
Nearest the pin in 2 on the short par 4, 13th hole – Richard Newport (to within a couple of feet)
Nearest the pin on the 15th, another fine par 3 surrounded by bunkers – Chris Garden
Longest drive on the 18th – Andy Stracey (of course!)
Team Stableford (2 better balls counting on each hole)
1st: John Uwins, David Leakey and Richard Newport – 83 points
2nd: Chris Garden, Tony Price and John Thornton – 78 points
3rd: Matt Hignell, David Coombs and Martin Breddy – 66 points
1st: David Leakey – 39 points (a great round with some magnificent booming long drives)
2nd: John Uwins – 36 points (also a great score including three gross birdies)
3rd: Chris Garden – 31 points
4th: Tony Price – 31 points
Other good individual scores on this challenging course were made by:
Pete Bennett, Martin Breddy and Alistair Vearonelly -30 points
David Coombs and John Thornton - 29 points
Andy Stracey (off scratch), Richard Baker and Mike Hamment – 28 points
Richard Newport – 27 points
Stuart Lester and Bob Barltrop – 26 points