With the golfing season peaking in July around The Open Championship, Laytown & Bettystown golfers continued to perform and deliver at the highest levels of the amateur game in Ireland.
At the start of the month, Carol Wickham claimed the Irish Senior Women’s Close Championship. The competition, played in Westport, began with two rounds of qualification before the top 16 progressed to a knockout matchplay. The eventual final was something of a local affair played out against Deirdre Smith of Co. Louth Golf Club.
Having twice been a finalist in the competition, and with the experience of having played the Women’s Home Internationals previously over the same course, Carol triumphed on the 16th hole. A superb result for Carol and good indication of the strength of ladies’ golf in the area.
Later in July, Alex Maguire continued his fine form adding to a growing collection of titles and trophies. This time, the Mornington and Florida Atlantic University student, played out an enthralling match against Michael Reid of Galgorm Castle GC in the final of the North of Ireland Men’s Open.
With the lead switching five times over the course of the first 16 holes and both players unable to gain more a single hole advantage, Alex dispatched a prodigious drive down the 17th fairway to a green 406 yards away. With his opponent primed to sink a birdie putt, Alex dropped a 20-foot putt for an eagle two, before confirming his claim to the title on the 18th. The addition of the “North” title to Alex’s growing list of achievements marks an important footnote in the history of the club – no Laytown & Bettystown player had previously won the title.
Between Carol and Alex’s wins, the club also hosted the prize giving for the Lady President’s Prize. With three players tying for the lead a countback was needed to confirm Marie McLoughlin as the eventual winner. Second place went to Marie McAuley, who at 89 proved that age really is just a number! Third place went to Lolo Smith, with Aimee Wickham winning Division 1, Dympna Walsh, Division 2 and Ann O’Brien, Division 3.
Men’s Captain, Gerry Wickham hosted his Captain’s Prize and in glorious sunshine Gareth Lawless won in fine style by four strokes ahead of second place Mark Herridge, with Rodney Keogh rounding out the top three on the day.
Club competitions aside, the members have also been active in hosting a number of their annual fundraising events for local charities. The always popular East Meath Hospice Association took place on Friday, 9 July. Jimmy Clynch, Pat McHugh, Michael O’Brien (Co Louth GC) and John O’Neill (Stackstown GC) took first place, with the team consisting of Margaret Spellman, Marie McLoughlin, Elma Delaney and Patricia Broderick coming in as runners up.
The organising committee and club would like to thank all the sponsors of this event as well as everyone who helped by donating raffle prizes, playing on the day or buying tickets. Your contribution was greatly appreciated.
With some easing of restrictions promised, and with a gradual move towards more normal play the club continues to look forward to an enjoyable late summer of golf. The junior golf programme remains as active as ever and several club teams are still in the hunt for honours as we move into the business end of the season.
A new catering operation is expected to start (for members and non-members) over the next few weeks.
To keep up to date on the club and the latest news see www.landbgolfclub.ie or follow them on social media (search “Laytown – Bettystown Golf Club”).