Mini golf ‘King of Putters’ is crowned again

British Minigolf Association’s season reaches its climax

On Sunday the 6th of December at Star City, Birmingham, Michael Smith became four-time winner of the BGMA’s stroke play season with a 10,837-point win at the Star City Open. Paul Johnson tied with Smith for most aces in a row, both on 5. The final scoreboard can be seen on the BMGA’s Order of Merit page. The Season Only Rankings shield was won by Andy Wilde of the Sussex Wasps Minigolf Club.

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Michael Smith ends the season with another win. Image Credit: Marion Homer

Fresh from winning the World Crazy Golf Championships held at Hastings in October, Smith set a Star City course record of 27 in round 1 and equalled it in round 2.

Star City is home to Adventure Island, an indoor mini golf complex with two themed 18-hole courses built across multiple levels and surrounded by waterfalls, volcanoes and Tiki villages. A list of all tournament-standard minigolf courses in the UK is available here. The BMGA offers Tour Pro membership for £30 per season, which includes discounted pre-tournament practice rates at venues on the tour calendar.

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Kent Minigolf Club members at Star City. Image Credit: Steve Sturdy

Mini golf has a worldwide following. 47 countries have a national association for the sport, and all are governed by the World Minigolf Sport Federation based in Gothenburg, Sweden. It approves courses worldwide as fit for tournaments. A popular recent addition to the mini golf universe is indoor glow-in-the-dark courses for indoor use in countries with inclement weather.

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Ruth Burke concentrating hard on aiming for an ace.  Image Credit: Marion Homer

So far, nobody has declared themselves a professional mini golf player in the sense that they earn a living from competing. But some of the best do earn a living from mini golf-related work, such as coaching golfers in putting skills. Most keen UK minigolfers play for the honour of winning at what can, at the highest level, be a tough competitive sport.

Michael Smith wins the 2015 World Crazy Golf Championships

Congratulations to Michael Smith who took home the top cash prize of £1,000 in the final major mini golf competition of 2015 at Hastings Adventure Golf Course last weekend!

World Crazy Golf Championships 2015
Action from the World Crazy Golf Championships 2015 (Image Credit: Richard Gottfried)

The annual World Crazy Golf Championships took place at Hastings Adventure Golf including 75 players from 4 different countries, was won by Great Britain’s Michael Smith with an impressive -31 under par over the 7 rounds.

Second place Pasi Aho from Finland finished with -18 under par and in a admirable third slot was Chris Harding, last year’s World Crazy Golf Champion finishing with -17 under par.

Doing it for the girls was former winner and child mini golf prodigy Olivia Prokopova, from the Czech Republic in a very respectable 4th place.

Notable ‘Most aces in a row’ included Emily Gottfried who scored 3 aces in a row and a total of 22 hole in ones in the whole competition, with hole 16 obviously being a favourite for her.  Emily scored 5 aces out of a possible 6! Here is some footage from the World Crazy Golf Championship Final on Hole 16:

Here is a candid review from Jonathan Wells who writes for the Telegraph, in this article ‘I competed in the World Crazy Golf Championships…and came last‘  It is really not as easy as you think………

You can see the full list of results from the BMGA website here.  You can also read the Gottfried’s Report on the event as Richard and Emily took 20th and 34th positions respectively.

The next event on the British Mini Golf Association Tour is the Kent Open, on November 14 at the Lost Island Encounter Adventure Golf Course in Chislehurst.

Image Credit: Richard Gottfried

Sources: The Ham and Egger Files

The Telegraph