At last some decent weather!

After what feels like the longest Winter ever…. it was wonderful to have a decent day on Saturday for the kids to enjoy the 9 hole chip n putt event without freezing to death!

We had a super turn out of 16 youngsters aged form 4 to 13 years old and some great golf played too.

Our main objective is to provide an opportunity for the children to go out to play the game in a safe environment and in an event that does not take too long to play.

It really is about taking part and we encourage everyone to try to beat their own personal best, which is why we run the eclectic competition too.

Don’t forget these events are completely free to play in and you do not have to be on the junior coaching at Dunes to take part. We are on a mission to get more kids out playing and reducing the amount of time spent in front of screens!

Thanks to our amazing sponsors photogifts.co.uk we have a superb prize that is personalised for the overall best score each week.

This week it was a really cool mug filled with sweet treats that has the date of the event printed on it so it’s something the winner can treasure forever!

Winner of the mug with the score of the day was Alexander Wisely on 28. Alexander is making this a regular habit as the victory sees him sitting 8 points clear at the top of the Order of Merit with 15 points. He is also top of the Eclectic table with a total of 22. Mattthew Cardno finished in 2nd on 29 and Billy Myers was third on 30. Billy managed to improve a couple on his eclectic score so has moved to within 3 shots of Alexander.

In the 4 to 8 year old group, Riley Whyte took the top spot ona countbakc from Kameron Brown as both players scored a 36. Riley won the special flourescent golf ball as a prize for his victory. In 3rd place was Mason McRobbie on 39.

To view the latest Order of Merit and Eclectic scores then please CLICK HERE. It will ask for a password to view the information – it is ‘sweep’

I am delighted that these events are proving popular as we continue our mission to get more kids out golfing and away from computer screens.

The format allows for the kids to experience a competitive game in a safe environment and eventually to membership of one of the local clubs.

They are completely free of charge and all equipment can be provided for no extra cost.

Here is a reminder of how the events work…
Ensure your child is registered to play by 2.30pm at the latest – every Saturday afternoon.

If you turn up after this there is a chance your child will not be able to play.
Registration is at the Golf Shop Desk at Dunes.

The format is 9 holes Chip and Putt around the Short Game Zone at Dunes Golf Centre. This should take between 30mins and 1 hour to complete depending upon how many kids turn up and how fast they play.

So, even on a cold day they should be able to manage this short amount of time outside. Also, as the area is so close to the golf centre, the kids are never far away should they wish to abandon their game and come in due to the weather.

Note: A condition of entry is that you are available to walk round with your child to supervise scoring and etiquette.

The Order of Merit
Your child gets 1 point for turning up to play – so the more times they play the more points they will get. Note: the points are overall and not divisional.
1st place 3 points
2nd place 2 points
3rd place 1 point

The Eclectic
This is where we take the very best score you have on each hole throughout the whole series of events to create your dream round.

This is a great way to stay motivated even if you are having a bad scoring day because if you score lower on just one hole then you will have improved your eclectic score!

Both the order of merit and eclectic scores will be viewable online so you and your child can track progress and know which holes are key to improving the eclectic score

The eclectic and order of merit events run from now until 19th May with a family fun day on 26th May when we will also have the grand prize presentation.

Rules
We don’t want to have loads of rules but to ensure safety and fairness to everyone playing we need to have some….

  • The ball must be placed in the blue box area on each tee
  • Play to the hole as numbered on top of the flagstick. So, from tee number 1, play to hole number 1.
  • The holes go around the green in a clockwise direction
  • Keep accurate count of your score. Attempts at the ball count, even if you miss it.
  • Make sure it is safe to play first:
    Check no one is near you that could be hit by the swinging club or the ball. Whilst you are waiting to play stand somewhere so that you can see the person playing and they can see you.
  • Everyone in your group tees off and then you play in order of the furthest from the hole plays next.
  • Only putters are allowed on the green – no irons and no big swings because it can cause damage that cannot be fixed.
  • After your 9 holes, shake hands with your playing partners and thank them for the game
    Add up your scores and return the scorecard to the staff in the golf shop
  • If you lose a ball or it goes over the road or any of the fences then you must play your shot again and add on 1 penalty shot. This includes if you ball finishes in the gravel around the shed near the 9th hole.

Yule is the Master

Dunes Golf Centre played host to the first Mini-Major of the year as the Short Game Zone was transformed in to a mini Augusta National Course.

Dunes Golf Centre Short Game Zone

The nine hole layout tested golfers of all abilities in a chip n putt event spread over the same four days as the real US Masters event.

Each competitor could enter as many times as they wanted right up until the cut off time of 3pm on Sunday.

With sponsorship from Ping and Dunes Golf Centre a prize table worth over £450.00 was up for grabs. Not to mention the opportunity to be presented with our famous green (some say Teal) jacket!

Women’s event
Vic Buchan took the top spot as she shot a terrific score of 25. This was three shots clear of Jacalyn Thoirs and Kathleen Mollison, both on 28 but with Jacalyn taking second place on a countback.

Men’s Event
Final day drama decided the men’s event as long time leader Doug Hastie was pipped at the post by pretty much the last competitor on the course. Doug’s 24 was looking good for the victory until Norman Reid came in with a 23 to win by one. Taking third place was Tommy Reid having also scored 24 but losing out on a countback to Doug.

12 and Under
The performance of the week came on the first day as 9 year old Rhys Yule set the pace for everyone, including the adults, with a blistering 23!

This could not be beaten despite some great efforts from all the youngsters who took part. Callum Milne came closest with his score of 25 for second and in third with a 29 was Andrew Cardno.

In total 202 rounds of golf were played over the four days and we were delighted to see so many families out there enjoying playing together.

Our mission is to grow participation in the game and we know what a wonderful sport it is for families to play together.

The Short Game Zone is a permanent fixture at the Golf Centre and is available to play all year round, 7 days a week. It costs just £2.50 for all day play and with a whole host of different games available it will entertain you and the family for hours. Club and ball hire is free of charge too!

The Mini Majors are going to be a permanent fixture at Dunes so see we look forward to seeing you at the next one:

  • Mini US Open 14th – 17th June 2018
  • Mini Open 19th – 22nd July 2018
  • Mini US PGA 9th – 12th August 2018

Do you know how to repair a pitchmark properly?

As a 14 year old and just as I was getting the golfing bug, I did two weeks work experience with the greenkeepers at the World Famous, Ganton Golf Club.

Ganton is located just outside my hometown of Scarborough, with the course famous for being one of only a handful in the World to have hosted The Ryder Cup, The Walker Cup and the Curtis Cup.

Me on the 6th tee at Ganton Golf Club

A few years later it would be the venue where I would start my career as a PGA Professional as I took the assistants job at the club.

However, it was in that two weeks as a greenkeeper where I learned lots about maintaining and caring for a golf course and one particular thing stayed with me and I’ve shared it with 1000’s of golfers since…. How to repair a pitchmark, correctly!

Did you know..?

A correctly repaired pitchmark will recover in 24 hours. However, an unrepaired pitchmark left unattended for two hours will take up to two months to recover.

Now that the season has started, the increase in numbers playing on the courses means that inevitably more pitchmarks will be made on the greens. However, there is no excuse for not repairing them after you have made one.

The increased numbers arise despite just about every golfer I speak to speak to saying, “Why can’t people repair their pitchmarks?” Everyone you talk to always claim that they repair 3 or 4 on every green!

As well as looking unsightly, from a golfing point of view, pitchmarks can affect ball roll and cause a player’s putt to bobble and deviate offline. Studies have shown that on average, a golfer will make 8 pitchmarks during a round of golf. If 130 rounds are played per day, that’s over 1,000 pitchmarks per week; no surprise then that it can be difficult to hole a putt!

It isn’t just about attempting to repair the pitchmark… it is about repairing it properly. Many golfers out there do not know how to do it correctly and damage the grass in the process….
In summary, you should take your pitchmark tool and insert the prongs into the turf at the edge of the depression. Do NOT insert the prongs into the depression itself, but at the rim of the depression. Then push the edge of the repairer toward the centre, using the tool in a gentle twisting motion. Do NOT insert and attempt to push up the depression as this only leads to tearing the root and killing the grass.

Claim your FREE pitchmark repairer from Dunes

As part of our campaign to spread awareness of the ‘Pitchmark Problem’ we are giving away pitchmark repairers to the first 100 people to come along to Dunes Golf Centre to claim theirs.

Don’t be shy, everyone should carry one of these tools when they play. However, if you do find yourself without one when you are playing, you can still repair a mark effectively with your tee peg in the same way as stated above.

We are blessed with an abundance of great golf courses in the North East of Scotland so let’s all do our bit to keep them in great condition. Pitchmarks (and divots) are not the responsibility of the greenkeeping staff but of every golfer who plays the game.

Enjoy your golf,

Peter Myers
PGA Professional