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O’Hanlon Wins The Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship

Cornwall based, PGA Professional, Richard O’Hanlon triumphed after drama at the last hole left Nailcote’s European Tour Pro’s Mark Mouland and Andrew Marshall one shot shy of a 3 man play off.

With O’Hanlon in the club house at 6 under par, Mouland missed a 6 foot putt for par which would have put him in a play off. And Marshall, who needed a birdie to make a play off watched as his 20 foot putt stopped agonisingly an inch short of the hole.

After the dramatic finish, O’Hanlon reflected on how fortunes in golf can change, “Last year after the first day’s play, I was in last place – and here I am now the British Par 3 Champion – It’s amazing !”

The Championship saw several other star players in the top ten places, with 21 year old Oli Fisher finishing at 2 under par on his first visit to Nailcote alongside Gary Wolstenholme and Mike Watson all in 4th place.

The Seniors’ Tour No 1 money earner and course record holder, Carl Mason finished at 1 under with European Tour players Gary Boyd and Simon Wakefield. Just behind them in 10th place the tournament host, Tony Jacklin produced some super golf to roll back the years and finish on level par.

Celebrating the 40th Anniversary of his US Open win Tony was delighted but reflected that at one point when he was 3 under par and just 2 shots off the lead, his competitive instincts were really firing. “It’s so tough around here – but a great test and great fun – it’s what the game of golf is all about – the fiddly bits !”

Past Ryder Cup player, Brian Waites eliminated all the “fiddly bits” on the first day by holing his tee shot on the signature 9th and winning a £1,500 Italian designer, Fope gold bracelet.

And Tommy Horton missed out on winning the £28,000 Land Rover Freelander that Guy Salmon sponsored on the 146 YARD 7TH HOLE WHEN HIS TEE SHOT FINISHED JUST AN INCH AWAY FROM THE CUP !!

So the traditional wheelbarrow with £5,000 in £1 coins arrived at the presentation and the new Farmfoods’ British Par 3 champion was crowned – Richard O’Hanlon.

The ‘Better Ball’ pairs scoring was very tight with several superb performances from some of the Professionals Amateur partners. Gary Boyd and Simon Peake, Gary Wolstenholme and Sarah Herd and Andrew Marshall with Dan Holt all worked well together finishing tied for 4th on 12 under par. But hot favourities, Mark Mouland and 14 year old partner, Charley Hull just missed out on the title again finishing on 13 under in 3rd place with Andrew McKay and amateur course record holder, Aaron Rai runners up on 13 under too.

It was left to a more mature partner Ian Halliwell teamed with European Tour professional, Simon Lilly to produce that little bit extra to take the “pairs” title at 14 under par. A delighted Ian Halliwell had donated a new trophy for the event and promptly won it !!

A terrific group of celebrity golfers enjoyed the week and helped support the Rainbows Hospice and Seve Ballesteros Foundation in the process. Amongst the star names competing, the large crowds which attended this year were able to enjoy seeing several new Nallcote visitors including, Sir Bobby Charlton, Len Goodman, John Conteh and Kenny Logan. And it was great to see regulars returning to take up the challenge of the Par 3 like Ron Atkinson, Lee Sharpe, Brendan Cole, Bob Champion, Peter Shilton, William Roache and Willie Thorne.

It was entertainment all the way and then the golf began !

The two charity Celebrity Am days of the Championship on the 10th and 13th produced some exciting golf and the amazing Brian Close who at 79 years of age and with a handicap of just 8 won the Celebrity Trophy on both days with 42 points on the 10th and 37 points on the 13th.

Past celebrity champion, Clive Abbott was just two points behind in 3rd place while Gary Wolstenholme lost out to Brian on a countback to be 2nd. On his first attempt at playing the course, Len Goodman finished joint 7th and Nailcote regular, Pete Langford of the Barron Knights came in 5th with 35 points.

On the 13th, Len Goodman made it into the prizes with a 5th place finish on 33 points playing up with the crowd all the way round and even dancing with one or two ! David J Russell, Gary Wolstenholme and Warren Jacklin chased Brian Close hard, but he held on to win by 2 points. Sir Bobby Charlton played the event for the first time and commented that it was tougher than he had expected but that he had enjoyed a great day with his team.

The team events certainly produced some drama especially on the first Celeb-Am on the 10th August. Despite some good play by the Hyland Wealth Management and Bernard Matthews’ teams aided by Kriss Akabusi and Ron Atkinson respectively and the Farmfoods’ team with Gary Wolstenholme, it was left to the 2nd team of Farmfoods, Ian Halliwell and Derek Morris to battle it out for the top three places.

All of them finished on 92 points – 20 under par and on a countback the Derek Morris team won with Pete Langford their celebrity assisted by his star 11 year olds !! Stefan Gryla, George Gray and Eliott Garside. Ian Halliwell’s team with the superb Clive Abbott were runners up and the Farmfoods’ team with Tommy Horton 3rd.

The final event of the tournament produced another really tight finish and the prize winners in 4th, 5th and 6th places were RSM Tenon with Len Goodman, Martin Ross with Jasper Carrott, and Aubrey Allen with Darren Maddy.

At the end of the day it was left to the two Farmfoods’ teams and Nailcote Hall to battle it out for the final three places with the Farmfoods’ team headed by Eric Herd with Gary Wolstenholme pulling off the win with 83 points – 11 under par. Nailcote Hall with Tommy Horton finished one shot behind and a further shot back the 2nd Farmfoods’ team with Willie Thorne had to settle for 3rd place.

The Gala Dinners were a resounding success and as a result of the fund raising efforts, the various event charities have benefited to the tune of more than £……… The family fun of the event was boosted by a new look tented village with chipping competition from John Letters and a golf simulator challenge. And everyone could take a breather and enjoy a free massage or face painting for the youngsters while the ladies could try products from Liz Earle and Estee Lauder in the John Lewis tent.

All in all a great festival of golf was enjoyed by record crowds over the four days and the weather was a bit better too! There’s sure to be lots more excitement and even more famous names and players coming to the Championship next year.

For more information and news,call Sue Cressman on 07957 546622 or visit the website, http://britishpar3.com/

For more about enjoying golf at Nailcote Hall call 02476 466174 or visit www.nailcotehall.co.uk

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