Drumoig Golf Centre 2008
Day 1 - The majority of the group met in Aberdeen armed with clubs, expectations of fine weather and a massive cairy-oot. Unusually Big Bob was playing down his chances of retaining his crown.
Corona was the drink of the morning and the first case was emptied before we reached Brechin - the perfect warm-up. On the journey down it was announced that the team event would be a 'hidden team' competition and the team pairings would be drawn at dinner following the 1st round.
During the previous Curry night, the matches were drawn from a Balti dish, but the main draw - 'Fa's Sharing A Room Wi Bob' was done. The lucky winner on this occasion was Andy Buchan. After hearing all the stories from the previous room sharers Andy arranged a work trip to Houston and had to withdraw from this years 5th Major!
The Gavin Bain & Co sponsored team competition took place on the Saturday afternoon with everyone playing for their own Stableford score. Following the evening dinner the teams were drawn. In third place with a total score of 64pts was Bob Reilly and Iain Ritchie. The runners up with a score of 68pts was Gavin Bain and Nick McLeod and the winners for this year was Steve McGrath and Rod Phillips, who both played majestic golf, scoring a magnificent 69pts.
Bob Reilly won the Wood Group Nearest-the-Hole (2nd) with an effort which stopped 12 feet from the hole. In retrospect it should have been renamed Nearest-The-Green!
Prior to the evening meal, the Nick McLeod Putting competition took place. This years putter was a plastic toy putter suitable for a 2 year old. It eventually took 5 rounds, with a mandatory nip of whisky for each player before putting, before Andy Rose sunk the only putt. Amazingly, there were no casualties as a result of 5 nips, particularly from the 'non-whisky' drinkers!
A fine dinner was had by all, in what was initially shaping up to be professional preparation ahead of the 5th Major the following day. However, it again all went pear-shaped when the team went into St Andrews for the night ....... 2 minibuses in, 10 taxis back! Stuart was showing everyone his 'pulling' technique and returned back to base alone!
Day 2 - The 5th Major. Following a full Scottish breakfast the group prepared for another assualt on the course. Again buggies were organised for everyone and scoring was expected to be high as tiredness was not expected to be a factor.
Play commenced at 11:20 with defending champion Bob Reilly getting the 5th Major underway. The conditions were more or less perfect throughout the round, dry but cold. Rookie player, Stuart Meade had a disasterous round scraping together 18 points - the pressure of competition or mixing it with the big hitters in the boozer on the previous night was his downfall. The standard of play in general was mediocre, which was reflected in the scoring - nobody broke par! Defending champion Big Bob Reilly had a nightmare defence, however rumours suggest that he couldn't afford the cost of filling the trophy and threw his game.....
The bulk of the group all returned scores in the mid-twenties and the top four were separated by only 2 points. However, the eventual winner with a score of 32 points, and winning his 1st Major (and probably the first thing he has ever won!) was Ian ' The Chief/The Duke/Larry Shut That Door' Trotter. Well done Chief. Steve McGrath was runner-up for the 2nd time in his 5th major career and is getting the reputation as the nearly man.
Quote of the day goes to Bernie. Following a heated discussion with his caddie (Rod Snr), Bernie lashed at the ball which landed way off centre into the right hand side rough. The caddie shouts over "fit did ye de that for?", and Bernie replies " cos I'm shite, I didnae mean te pit it ower there" A Classic.
We had three Nearest-the-Hole competitions. The Securastore Nearest-the-Hole (11th) was won by Bob Reilly with an excellent effort stopping 4 feet away from the hole. Gary Wood won the Cameron Nearest-the-Hole (14th) hitting a 4 iron to 15 feet and Graeme Meade won the Plaza Interiors Nearest-the-Hole (16th) hitting a wedge to 9 feet. Well done to all.
Former champion Phil Sinclair scored 30 points which was enough for him to regain the accolade of No. 1 player in the Order of Merit.
Following dinner and the prize giving ceremony a presentation was given by Iain in awarding a signed photgraph from Paul Lawrie to the Director of Operations, Rod Phillips. Paul will be invited to the next 5th Major as he normally has some free time over the weekend! (Only kidding ....... )
Half of the group travelled back to Aberdeen on the bus where copius amounts of whisky and drambuie were consumed. However, the tradition of having at least one casualty on the return journey never happened and there are no new additions in the Rogues Gallery.
Overall, it was another cracking weekend.