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Tyler (11) takes first medal of 2020 season at Thurso

By Ali Morrison

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Eleven-year-old Tyler Gordon was the winner of Thurso Golf Club's delayed April Medal.
Eleven-year-old Tyler Gordon was the winner of Thurso Golf Club's delayed April Medal.

Competitive golf returned to Thurso on Thursday, June 11, with the first round of the ever popular Summer League.

This season’s competition is sponsored by local firm A & A Mackay Builders.

A big entry of 74 players took part in conditions that were very favourable and, not surprisingly, there were some excellent scores.

Best start of the day came from Alan Swanson who saw his 7 iron approach to the first hole nestle in the cup for an eagle two.

Innes Mitchell, showing some fine early season form, took fourth place with 39 points, including three birdies in four holes on the front nine.

Chris Sutherland was in third place, also with 39 points. With four points at the first hole Chris got off to a flyer, his only hiccup coming at the par-five seventh where he ran up an eight – but he bounced straight back with a birdie three at the eighth.

Runner-up was Mick Ross with two consistent halves of 22/20 points giving him an excellent 42. Mick’s round was one he will remember for a long time as his gross score of 79 was the first time he had broken 80.

First winner of the season was Ryan Forbes, also with 42 points. Despite no-score at the sixth hole and a poor finish Ryan held on to first place by virtue of the better back nine.

Ryan has been showing quite a bit of early season form and this has led to his handicap being reduced to 21.

Summer League round one results: 1 Ryan Forbes, 42 pts; 2 Mick Ross, 42 pts; 3 Chris Sutherland, 39 pts; 4 Innes Mitchell, 39 pts.

On Saturday, June 13, the Bert Loomes Memorial was contested. Sixty-six players teed off, again in good conditions.

Scoring was excellent with 14 players at par or better.

Brian Hutcheon shot 93 (28) 65 to take fourth place, due mainly to an excellent back nine.

In third place was Tyler Gordon with a very tidy 81 (17) 64.

Jack Fidler took the runner-up spot, following his 39 points on Thursday with an impressive 78 (14) 64.

The winner of the first trophy of the season was Thomas McAlonan. Thomas, who lives just a short pitch from the first tee, had two excellent halves of 39/42 for his winning score of 81 (18) 63.

Bert Loomes Memorial results: 1 Thomas McAlonan, 81 (18) 63; 2 Jack Fidler, 78 (14) 64; 3 Tyler Gordon, 81 (17) 64; 4 Brian Hutcheon 93 (28) 65.

The final event of what was a very busy opening few days of the season was the delayed April Medal on Sunday, June 14. Some players may have decided to have a rest from the hectic start, which led to a slightly smaller field of 50.

Walter Rutherford’s lucky number must be two as he holed his second shot at the second hole for an eagle two on his way to an excellent 66.

In fourth place was Terry Mackay with 80 (13) 67, while Rutherford took third with his 77 (11) 66. Walter had four threes and a two in his excellent front nine of one-over-par 36.

Runner-up was Innes Mitchell with 72 (7) 65. A fine opening nine of level-par 35 set Innes up for his impressive round.

Knowing that he needed a four at the last to take the lead, Innes’s approach ran just a little too far and finished on the grassy bank at the back of the green. He didn’t quite get up and down to salvage par.

His consolation was that his round was the best gross score of the day.

The winner of the first medal of the 2020 season was 11-year-old Tyler Gordon.

Tyler, clearly in good form after his 64 on Saturday, had a lesson from Lesley Mackay before his round on Sunday and it clearly paid off.

A steady front nine of 40 was followed by 41 on the back nine, giving him the winning score of 81 (16) 65 – pipping Innes by virtue of a better back nine. Tyler started the weekend playing off 17 and ended it playing of 15.

April Medal results: 1 Tyler Gordon, 81 (16) 65; 2 Innes Mitchell, 72 (7) 65; 3 Walter Rutherford, 77 (11) 66; 4 Terry Mackay, 80 (13) 67.

The next fixtures at Thurso are Summer League round two on Thursday 18th, the May Medal on Saturday 20th and Summer League round three on Sunday 21st.

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