Oceania Championships Held at Putt Putt Mermaid Beach
31 May 2019 at 13:38 | Published by: PatPenguin | Views: 697 | News search
Top 3 mens places (Photo by Australian MGF Facebook)
The first ever and 2019 WMF Oceania Championships were recently held on the immaculately prepared and maintained Mermaid Beach Putt Putt course on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia. Competition began on the 11th and concluded on the 12th May. There were 37 competitors that took to the courses (Water and Jungle) in Youth, Amateur men, Amateur women divisions, over three rounds and eight rounds for the Professional men and women. Tournament conditions were ideal with a quite sunny day and temperatures hovering around the 25 Deg.C mark, greeting the players. » Australian MGF Facebook (Results)
Competition would be tight in the professional men's ranks with 10 competitors with international mini golf competition experience and several players backing up from the Australian National Championships held in October, 2018 held on these courses. What follows is some highlights from the professional men’s division which saw 15 competitors vying for the top spot.
Round 1 (Water Course): It was 2018 Australian champion Allan Cox who led the field after round 1 with a bogey free 31. Other scores under par included Joshua Mars 33, Richard Day 33, Nathan Lamplough 34 and kiwi Matt Ansley 34.
Round 2 (Water Course): This round saw a low score of 30 to Nathan Lamplough, a solid 31 to Bobby Hart. A round of 34 saw Allan Cox surrender the 2nd round lead. Others to shoot under par were John Ansley and Joshua Mars.
Round 3 (Jungle Course): A change to the Jungle course would see a low round of 28 from 5 times Australian pro champion Nathan Lamplough and further extend his lead. Other low scores of note were recorded by Bobby Hart with a 29, Allan Cox with a round of 30 that included a 12 on the back nine. Luke Lord also going low with a round of 31.
Round 4 (Jungle Course): The scintillating low round and WMF course record of 27 was shot by former New Zealand champion Bobby Hart. Nathan Lampough followed up his 28 with a solid round of 31. Other rounds under par of note. Allan Cox 30, Luke Lord 31 and Mick Collins with a round of 32. Tournament leader after day 1 of competition would be Nathan Lamplough at 123, Bobby Hart at 124, Allan Cox at 125. The three had opened up a nine-stroke gap back to fourth and seemed destined to be battling for medals and prize money come day two.
Day 2 of competition again saw perfect competition conditions. Competitors in a quandary as to whether this was the "beautiful one day" or "perfect the next" day as spruiked by the Queensland Tourism Commission in advertising over the years.
Round 5 (Jungle Course): The low round of 29 saw third placed Allan Cox gain a share of the tournament lead as overnight leader Nathan Lamplough shot a solid round of 31. Bobby Hart had some troubles this round to record a round of +3 (39) Other low rounds were recorded by Richard Day 29, Matt Ansley 30 and Dylan Searle a 34.
Round 6 (Jungle Course): This round would see the three leaders jostling for position and confirmed the three of them would be filling the podium positions. Bobby Hart with a solid round of 31. Nathan Lamplough recording a 4 on the tough hole 3, halting his momentum resulting in a score of 32. Another to go low in round 6, Mick Collins with a 31. Allan Cox with a round of 30 to take a 2 stroke lead with two rounds to play out, finishing on the Water Course.
Round 7 (Water Course): The low round a 28 and WMF course record scored by Bobby Hart to scream back into contention. A 34 from Nathan Lamplough and a round of 29 from Allan Cox would see Allan take a 7 shot lead into the last round. Regrouping took place at this stage with competitors having a small break before the last round would hit off in reverse order. The only danger to this trio filling the podium was Luke Lord sitting back in forth position after shooting a round of 30.
Round 8 (Water Course): Last round saw a very solid round of 30 from Nathan Lamplough in his attempt to run down the leader and fight off the fast charging Bobby Hart. Although Bobby's charge would come to an abrupt end with a 7 on the very difficult hole 8. A round of 41 resulting. The tournament now was down to two competitors both with over 30 years of competition experience on Putt Putt courses in Australia and both having competed professionally in the USA in PPA nationals competition. Allan managed to match Nathan's 30 last round and run out victor by 7 strokes.
Top 3 Professional Men:
Allan Cox (Aus): Score 243. Gold medal and 1st prize of $500.
Nathan Lamplough (Aus) Score 250. Silver medal and second prize of $300.
Bobby Hart (NZ) Score 263. Bronze medal and third prize $200.
Other winners were: Youth: Dylan Searle. Amateur men: Gavin Martin in a sudden death play - off with Richard Chamberlain. Women's amateur: Lucy Giesen, Professional women's: Faye Ansley.
Huge thanks to Gerhard Zimmermann WMF President and Victor Condeço European Mini Golf Sport Federation President for joining us for the very first Oceania championships. Thanks also to Mick Collins AMGF president, Matt Ansley NZMGF president and Lucy Giesen Oceania president for a well organised and successfully run competition, and the kiwi team for crossing the Tasman.
One more note of thanks from winner Allan Cox: “Thanks to the USA PPA pro who took the time to have a chat and pass on some great advice to a rookie Aussie pro mini golfer at Orange Lake in 1997. Advice that went something like this: "Preparation is key, and there is more to competition Putt Putt than just making aces" Best advice I ever received. I have tried to follow it over the years. That mini golf pro is being inducted into the USPMGA hall of fame this year (Dr. Brad Lebo)!”
Aces and scoring stats:
Total aces for the tournament in all divisions. (751)
Course records: Bobby Hart: Jungle Course 27, Bobby Hart: Water Course 28
Most aces: Nathan Lamplough (52)
Most consecutive aces: Bobby Hart (5) and Grant Mayne (5)
Thank you to Allan Cox for providing the content for this story.