Team Putterfingers.com compete at Sussex Wasps Open!

Mini golf tournament
Striding in purposefully … only to stride out again 5 hours later a little older and wiser

Last week we blogged about having formed a pro team and entering tournaments on the mini golf calendar. True to our word, our six team members herded into a minibus last Sunday and descended on Peterborough for the Putterfingers.com Sussex Wasps Open 2021. We were honoured to be attending an event that bore our name and were made to feel most welcome by event organiser Steve Lovell and all the other players.

It was a warmish if overcast day at Dobbies Garden Centre, the course was interesting and varied, the company was good, and all was well with the world. The Putterfingers.com team found the other more experienced players very helpful – not only because they went first to show us the best line to take on each hole, but also thanks to their kindness in explaining one or two obscure rules and giving us tips on stance and shot technique. We felt welcomed by our fellow mini golfers and enjoyed the camaraderie of four rounds with other like-minded people on a Sunday in Cambridgeshire.

See the official results on the BMGA website. As expected our scores were poor because we were novices and this was our first ever competitive mini golf event. We were a million miles or more accurately, ten or twelve shots per round away from your Popes, Lovells and Kukielkas at the top of the scoreboard. As those top players slugged it out for a place in the top three, we slogged it out at the bottom to avoid coming last (That honour went to Sam. It’s all right. He only cried a little bit).

Mini golf BMGA tournament Peterborough
Tension mounts at the play-off for fourth place

The scores really didn’t matter, though. The main takeaway from this, our first mini golf tournament, was a feeling of gratitude to Steve Lovell and Sussex Wasps for organising the event and being so nice about it. It was also great to meet so many avid mini golfers and watch and listen as we learned the ropes. Our toes are now firmly dipped into the world of competitive mini golf and we are hungry for more!

The prize for winning at the Lucky Last Hole (a £50 Putterfingers.com voucher) went to Rhiannon Davison from the Welsh Minigolf Club and she got a giant presentation cheque for her win!

Prize cheque for mini golf tournament winner

Special thanks go to mini golf supremos Richard and Emily Gottfried for treating us to a pre-tournament Zoom call filled with tips and tricks, an introduction to mini golf lore and customs, some sound advice for the mini golf course and much goodwill and encouragement. Thank you Richard and Emily!

Mini golf balls
Richard Gottfried explaining different types of mini golf ball to the Putterfingers team. The halo of mini golf wisdom is clearly visible above his head.

Next weekend Team Putterfingers.com face the World Crazies at Hastings! What could possibly go wrong?

Meanwhile, for all your mini golf equipment, gifts and fun, visit Putterfingers.com!

Minigolf at the Belfry featured on Sky Sports!

Sky Sports airs gripping adventure golf champs played at the Belfry

sky sports minigolf
A screen grab from Tuesday evening’s coverage of the American Golf Finals on Sky Sports

Our regular readers might recognise the face in the photo above. Yes, it’s our friend Richard Gottfried, putting supremo and the man behind the long-lived crazy golf blog The Ham and Egger Files. He has putted his way round over 700 minigolf courses in the British Isles and documented every one in his Crazy World of Minigolf Tour. He is no stranger to the media, but what is unusual in image above is that it is minigolf on the TELLY! Sky Sports, to be exact. Our favourite sports has hit prime time subscription TV!

Golf equipment supplier American Golf sponsors a series of golf tournaments in the UK which have grown in popularity. This year they have managed to secure slots on prime time Sky Sports TV for their competitions. Alongside the ‘big’ golf’ events like the Junior Championship and the 9 Hole Pairs, this year saw the inaugural Adventure Golf Pairs Championship aired on Sky Sports. Richard Gottfried, pictured above and below, chose Peter Jones as his teammate for this event. The grand final of the tournament was held on the Ryder Legends Mini Golf Course at The Belfry – not to shabby a venue! Each hole represents a famous hole from big golf, and includes some very long holes with a high difficulty level.

adventure golf, minigolf championships

We are thrilled that our favourite sport has had this airing on a leading sports channel, alongside big golf and on an equal footing with it. We’ve always known that minigolf is just as challenging and exciting as big golf, but now the sports-viewing public has had a front row view of top minigolf players in action, and seen how seriously they take it.

So big respect to American Golf for adding minigolf to their tournament series!

Simon Lee, who won the adventure golf final with partner Steve Gerrish, said, “It’s a great way to get people who don’t play golf into the sport. They can come along and have a bit of fun. It was brilliant to see everyone come out today. If there was more stuff like this around I think you’d have more young kids getting into golf.”

Of course minigolf is more than a gateway into big golf – it’s a mature and highly competitive sport in itself. But if it helps send more nippers on their way to giving Rory McIlroy a run for his money, we’re happy about that too!

www.putterfingers.co.uk