The benefits are time saving and increased cardio-vascular effort. Kapiti speed golfer, Brian Stewart
By Brian Stewart and Roger Childs
Kapiti Golf Club stalwart Brian Stewart has set the standard for speed golf on the coast. This unique variation on the popular game will no doubt have increased appeal as a result of his impressive nine hole round. Brian has thrown out the challenge.
Here is his account of the “sport” and his record breaking effort.
Inspiration from Nick Willis
I was inspired to have a go by an article in the December issue of The Cut, reporting on Nick Willis – 1500m silver medallist at the Beijing Olympics – competing in the World Speedgolf champs in Oregon. Nick plays at Shandon when in the country and has a pending handicap of 8.
I started doing a few holes on the run before playing with the Dawnbreakers. A downside is you have to start early so that golfers ahead don’t delay you. Several times I had to wait for greenkeeper, Sean, to finish mowing a green.
I built up the number of holes till I was ready to try 9. A surprise was my scores on some mornings. One day I started on hole 4 with a par, had a disappointing 7 on 5, then eagled 6 and birdied 7 – all on the run!
It was time to do an official nine holes with fellow Kapiti Golf Club member and runner, Tony Fraei, (pictured) as a witness.
In calm weather I started at 6am with no Sean to wait for.
My scores were 4 / 4 / 6 / 3 (5cm short of a birdie) / 5 / 5 (3 putt – bugger) / 4 / 4 / 5.
- Total strokes: 40. (Double click the photo above to verify the score.)
- Time taken: 32min, 12 sec.
- Speedgolf score: 72:12 (time in minutes and seconds + strokes.)
Not bad for a 65+ ex runner and orienteer!
Rules, more information and a challenge
The rules are the same as regular golf except:
- You have to carry your clubs: as few or as many as you like
- You can leave the pin in when putting.
- If you lose the ball you can drop another, penalty one stroke but no loss of distance.
The website www.speedgolfinternational.com has more information including results of the world camps. Nick Willis is planning the NZ Speedgolf Championships over two courses in Auckland next summer.
The benefits are time saving and increased cardio-vascular effort.
Brian has laid down the gauntlet, so all you golfers out there, why not give it a go?
Remember you need to follow the rules and have a reliable witness. Apparently Nick Willis has played some of his rounds with a single club: a 7 iron. As you can imagine, he’s pretty quick between strokes! Probably even faster than Brian!