Blessington Lakes Golf Club

Captain’s Drive In 2009 – Sean Feely and Noreen Wheatley

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\r\nSean Feely and Noreen Wheatley, Captains of Blessington Lakes Golf Club 2009

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The 2009 season started on 7th March with the Captain’s Drive-in. This was our first “full” competition under our new name, Blessington Lakes GC at Boystown. Thirteen teams of four players entered the competition, a nine-hole Scramble. The afternoon began in the traditional way with the two captains, Noreen Wheatley and Sean Feely, hitting a symbolic drive from the first tee. They were watched by a large gallery, many of whom were hoping to see at least one of them duff their shot. Happily, however, both drives sailed long and true down the middle of the fairway. I was reminded of this occasion of a few years ago. As we assembled beside the tee, a new member asked me what was happening. I explained that the two captains would tee-off to signify the start of their year in office. “Then what happens?” he asked. We all help them to look for their ball, I replied, at which the Men’s Captain coughed delicately just behind my right shoulder. I played particularly badly that day!

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sean-feely
\r\nSean gets the 2009 season off to a start

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The competition, off one twentieth of combined handicaps, began with a shotgun start only half an hour after the scheduled time of 1.00 pm. The short delay was due to the meticulous massaging of the supposedly “random” draw for teams. Judging by the cheers from around the course, several teams birdied their first hole, and similar sounds of triumph were repeated at frequent intervals throughout the afternoon. In all, 23 birdies were carded! There were only 13 bogies, and just one double bogie. This must surely be a record performance for the course, and hopefully a good omen for the 2009 season. Seven of the bogies, and the double, were carded at the second hole, par-4, stroke-index 1, into a strong head wind. No-one birdied this hole but the other eight holes were all birdied by at least one team.

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The winners were Nolene Mullen, Mark McGinley, Noel Burke and Colin Kelly, with a nett score of 28.3 (32 gross, five birdies, one bogie – at the second hole!) – A very commendable performance. Colin joined Blessington Lakes only a week previously, so this was his first competition here. Anne Kelly, Niall O’Connor, Stephen Peake and Sean Earles were second with 29.4 nett (33 gross, three birdies, no bogies) and Dympna Darby, Dermott McCarthy, Richard Kitt and Danny Lynch were third. They carded 29.5 nett (34 gross). They had three birdies too, but they bogied the second.

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The two captains, Noreen and Sean and their spouses, Brendan and Kitty, played together and scored 29.5 nett (34 gross). They would have been fourth, on count-back, but they were not eligible for a prize in their “own” competition. Their card was marred only by the day’s sole double-bogie, but Sean redeemed them on the final green by sinking a 15-foot putt for birdie (see picture, as evidence!)

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At the prize-giving, both Captains commented on the outstanding condition of the course, particularly the greens. They looked forward to their year in office, playing golf amid spectacular scenery on an excellent course, among their many friends at Blessington Lakes GC.
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