Ian and his son James only entered the national competition for a bit of fun but won the regional event at Malkins Bank Golf Club in Sandbach and then the National Final at The Belfry televised by Sky and scheduled to be aired on the 7th November
This qualified them for the Champions of Champions event in Mauritius, also televised by Sky, and they won the whole event, which was originally entered by over 7500 participants from all over the UK. As their prize they enjoyed a helicopter ride around the island and golf equipment to celebrate their victory.
“We couldn’t quite believe it as we didn’t think we would get through the first round, never mind win the entire event,” said Holy Cross Catholic student James, 15.
He and dad Ian, a Program Manager at Leyland Trucks, jetted off to Mauritius earlier this month not quite believing they had got that far.
Both play at Leyland Golf Club and they entered the regional event ‘to play together competitively on other courses,’ said James.
They got through that, admitted they were surprised to win at The Belfry and then relished the Champion of Champions event in Mauritius.
“American Golf paid for all of it so it was amazing,” said James, who was playing off 23 with his dad’s handicap seven. “It was lovely and hot, the hotel was five star and the course was fantastic.
“It was a Stableford competition, there was a practice round and then 36 holes for the competition. We played against all the winners from their respective categories from the Belfry
“My dad did really well on the first nine holes and then I kicked on, on the back nine.
“When we got to hole 15 in the final round, there was a live leaderboard and we knew we were in with a chance. It was hard to hold our nerve in front of the TV cameras
“When we got to the 18th we knew that we needed two points on that hole and my dad putted the winning putt. We jumped around a lot!
“We won a helicopter ride around the island which my mum was allowed to join us on. It was something else and hopefully we get to defend our trophy next year.
“It all seems unreal, I have never experienced anything like it and what started off as a bit of fun turned into a fantastic experience.”
The Mauritius experience is also scheduled to be shown on Sky TV as the finale to all the American golf amateur competitions on the 19th December.