Our Spring Meeting is held at Huntercombe, situated atop the Chilterns near Henley-on-Thames with red kites circling above and fine views down to the Vale of Oxfiord. Huntercombe always gives a warm welcome to Rugby golfers. The Spring Meeting is just one day and, slightly unusually for the ORGS, begins with a morning round playing your own ball before, after lunch, we revert to the more usual format of drawn stableford foursomes. The endless laughter is evidence of how much the day was enjoyed by all participants, whether or not they were in contention for prizes.
The weather was warm and sunny this year (a welcome contrast to the deluge last year), although rain on the previous couple of days meant that the course played at its full length with the greens more slow for the time of year than many playing would expect. In other words, although the course was beautifully presented, a good score was a real challenge.
The Duncan Salver, named after Tony and George Duncan who were two very fine OR (and international) golfers of a previous generation, is the prize for the best scratch medal score and was won this year by Peter Stanbrook (T 62-67), with a score of 78; one stroke behind was Nigel Cadbury (Tu 70-74). Peter found the greens a particular challenge after his previous rounds on lightening quick seaside courses, recording more shots on the greens than he took playing from tee to green showing just how good his game was off the greens.
Over the morning round the whole field also competes for the Spring Cup, a stableford competition under handicap. Tim Watts and Nigel Cadbury both scored 36 points and the Captain decided, using his own and very individual set of tie-break rules, that the cup should be awarded to Tim Watts (St 66-71) with the runner-up prize going to Christopher Johnson-Gilbert (W 68-73). Eh – why not Nigel? It is our rule that you can only win one prize in the same competition, so Nigel’s prize was the more important one as runner-up in the scratch medal.
The usual Rugby handicap rules applied to the afternoon round of drawn stableford foursomes (which means that half a point counts), and the best score was a very impressive 40 points from Stanbrook and Cadbury. Peter and Nigel both play in our Bernard Darwin team (Woking, 30th June) and we hope their fine form will continue in that event. Runners-up with 37.5 points were Antony Aitken (M 57-62) and Field Walton (C 54-58), a more usual countback procedure being applied to distinguish them from the other, unfortunate, pair on the same score (ahead of 2 pairs on 37 points – all very close).
Old Rugbeian Golfing Society