Captain’s Report – Hornibrook 2023 Geelong Victoria
This years tournament was contested by 110 golfers with Tessie and Newcastle being the two largest teams and sadly Queensland only providing two players.
The opening dinner was a great night to catch up with old mates and enjoy some stories by Ian Colver.
Golf was played at The Sands Golf Club on a gloomy day that got cooler as the day went on. Thankfully not much wind and and very forward white tees made for some high scores. Some complaints were that there were way too many bunkers and the recently renovated greens were sandy and bumpy. Best for NSW were your captain with 40 points and Reynold with 36 points.
Curlew was the venue for day two and it looked top shelf from the moment the bus entered the car park.
Fully renovated course and a new club house made for an exciting day out with most golfers gaining a shot or two on their handicap due to the higher slope rating.
The scores were still above Hornibrook average and all players rated this course very highly. A bit more length and pure quick greens made putting a pleasure if you got the correct line.
The NSW team dinner was held in a private room at the Central Hotel.
Food and wine were both excellent and it turned out to be a very enjoyable night. Good scores for NSW were Paul Watson with 43 points and Lynn Astley with 42 points with five of the team beating their handicap.
Wednesday Lay Day
A welcome sleep in and an easy morning stroll found us enjoying a beautiful sunny day at the Boatshed by the bay.
Good food and hospitality were complimented by the the fantastic could have been champions team of Ian Culver and Greg Champion. Both very funny and entertaining.
A long day as expected then home to bed in preparation for the final golf game.
We awoke to wind and light rain as forecast. The air temperature was only 6 degrees with an expected top of only 14 degrees so our trip to 13th beach was about to become uncomfortable.
No warm up as we sat around and watched the rain fall, with most guys diving for the weatherproof gear.
The groups left the clubhouse in light rain which didn’t let up for the first seven or eight holes and the whole field was cold and wet by this stage.
It was a shame the weather wasn’t on our side as the beach course was something to be reckoned with. Tight holes lined with thick scrub and plenty of fairway bunkers to catch any wayward tee shots. Its real protection was around the greens most surrounded by deep bunkers and the greens themselves were hard and fast even though wet. Many good approach shots were pushed off the front, back or sides due to the firmness of the greens and the exaggerated contours.
The scores were much more like Hornibrook scores with only 40 players getting to 30 or more points. Best for NSW was Garry Gibson with 32 points and Barry Morcom with 30 points.
The rain generally held off for the rest of the game only to return as we headed for the clubhouse.
A very nice lunch was served as we all warmed up before the bus trip back to Geelong.
As usual the fight for the cup was close with very little separating the top four teams.
The Thursday evening presentation took place in the Rydges Hotel and was attended by representatives of Cbus and the National Master Builders Association which we thank for their support and sponsorship.
The individual Hornibrook medal was won by yours truly with a combined total after 3 games of 113 points , winning by 3 points.
The team event once again went to the Gold Coast just ahead of the hosts Victoria with NSW coming in a respectable 4th.
Another well run and successful national tournament was enjoyed by all who attended and we look forward to meeting again in Newcastle for the 2024 edition.
Captain MB&E Golf Club.