Governing body’s staff enjoy a ‘quick nine’ as they sample the game’s latest innovative format
By Chris Johnston
ENGLAND GOLF staff picked up the pace when a Speedgolf demonstration was held on the Bracken course at their Woodhall Spa HQ in Lincolnshire
It turned the spotlight on the more athletic format which combines running and golf. England Golf partners British Speedgolf through its Golf Express campaign, which encourages busy people to play more often.
It turned the spotlight on the more athletic format which combines running and golf.
England Golf chief executive Nick Pink was amongst those who pulled on his running shoes to gain firsthand experience of the new craze.
“I thought it was great fun,” said Pink. “There were parts I had not really considered, like how to hold the bag whilst running, but for the first few holes I found that I actually played okay as I was not thinking about golf, just breathing. The challenge came as I got tired and the legs no longer moved!
“There was plenty of chat afterwards and a real sense of camaraderie which bound the group together. I liked this side of it and can see Speedgolf spreading and being successful for those who want to combine playing with fun and fitness.”
Pink was among eight staff volunteers who joined the Speedgolfers, with England Golf’s Participation and Club Support Director, Richard Flint, giving the experienced players a run for their money.
He shot round the nine holes in 23min 37 secs and took 43 strokes for a combined 66.37 Speedgolf score, and was beaten by only one player, Chris Benians, a PGA professional and former European Tour player. He was also the runner-up in last year’s British Speedgolf Open.
Benians took slightly longer to play the course, but used fewer shots for his score of 59.11.
The event proved to be a huge success, with staff unanimous in their praise for the bold new format. “I like combination sports and trying to keep fit,” said finance director Simon Wilson. “I am not a good golfer and I am coming back gently into running after a long injury so I was not bothered about how I did, but I wanted to gain some fun out of it and I certainly did that!”
Men’s performance manager Steve Burnett added: “I like running and golf so really wanted to give it a try. I liked having lots of opportunity to be creative.”