Team play the World Crazies

World Crazies 2021 team
Our rookie team did not disgrace themselves

Last weekend the mini golf team took on a second competitive challenge following our maiden event (the Sussex Wasps Open, which you can read about here). Rather than building up to big tournaments gradually like sensible people, we just steamed straight in and had a crack at the World Crazies, the annual festival of putting held every year at Hastings Adventure Golf.

St Andrews mini golf

The experience we gained was invaluable and it was amazing to watch the game’s top players in action. It is also a testament to the inclusivity and non-elitist nature of the mini golf world that we were able to enter such a prestigious tournament without having to qualify. Mini golf is truly a sport for all.

Friday saw us in the Team event, and the kindest thing that can be said is that we did not come last. A lack of preparation on our part and having a team consisting entirely of novices was never likely to result in crazy golf glory, yet we felt the sting of defeat keenly and this spurred us on to do better in the Individual event on Saturday.

Mini golf hastings obstacle
Is this hole just pure luck? Funny how the more you practice the luckier you get though.

Saturday’s weather was much nicer after Friday evening’s chilling breeze off the sea. The rounds went more quickly because we were three to a hole rather than six for the Team event. The stewards introduced a 30 second per shot rule to keep players flowing round the course and we did more or less stick to that, though there was something of a slowdown among the top groups as they focused harder and harder on making the cut for Sunday.

Multiple champion Michael Smith in action at hole 17

Our best player was Jon Clarke, who despite minimal practice and being new to the game (as we all are when it comes to competitive play) scored 37, 41 and 43 to end up in 32nd place in the Novice category. With regular practice and more tournament experience Jon could be one to watch.

Crazy golf tournament
Jon Clarke in action at hole 15 of the World Crazies

By competing at this level, the team gained a newfound respect for the game and for those who play it well. We got hands-on experience of some of the game’s technical aspects, such as the fact that the World Crazies permit the use of only one type of ball. Each player receives an official competition ball at the beginning of the tournament and must play with that ball only. So there is none of the cleverness of using a variety of balls with different weight and bounce, as we had seen at the Sussex Wasps Open. This a great leveller that puts the focus on pure skill by eliminating tactical ball selection.

Official ball World Crazies
The official ball

We would like to give a particular thank you to Steve Lovell, who made the time to show the team round the Crazy Golf Course during practice time on Friday with some pro tips on how to play each hole.

We enjoyed the atmosphere of the World Crazies. It was fun to be watched by passersby over the hedge, to play alongside leading players and of course to enjoy the doughnuts and ice cream from the kiosk on the course. We just might be hooked.

Watch two men fight pathetically on a golf course (and other news)

[Disclaimer: we do not condone golf-based violence]

A video has emerged of a golf fight: two men trying to bop each other on the nose (and one of them succeeding) on a golf course on Colorado, USA. Apparently incensed at the group behind hitting their ball at them, the instigator starts throwing haymakers – and then receives one in return. This sort of behaviour would never occur in the genteel world of minigolf. We can’t imagine how or why it would. A scoring dispute, perhaps? In any case, we do not condone golf-based violence and our advice is to keep calm and putt. In any case, these two wannabe heavyweights ended up shaking hands.

In other less pugilistic news, Wesley Street in Southport was transformed into a minigolf course last week. It was built to coincide with the Junior Open Golf Championships held at the Royal Birkdale the same week. Funds raised go towards the upkeep of the street, which has 22 independent retailers. Course fees were a very reasonable £2.50 for adults £7.50 for a family of four.


street minigolf, street crazy golf

Now the Open is over, the crazy golf course at Royal Troon has been revamped and reopened. It has a new 5-year leaseholder, a new ticket office and a fresh coat of paint. The course has been around for several generations to enjoy and now looks set fair to continue as an attraction.

Troon, crazy golf, troon minigolf

A new pirate-themed minigolf course has opened at Promenade Park in Maldon, Essex. Two years in the making, this course looks beautiful and has exploding cannons, sleeping pirates, ship features, crocodiles and a great-looking playing surface. Pirates Bay Adventure Golf should prove a hit with Essex families for the rest of the Summer.

Maldon, pirates bay adventure golf, promenade park

The 2016 Youth World Championships take place from August 10-13 in Bischofshofen, Austria. The under-19s tournament will have 74 players from 9 countries competing on two courses. Top contenders for the title appear to be Germany, who won the under-23 tournament earlier in the year.

minigolf, crazy golf, youth championships
Practice at the course before the event

A chance to win crazy golf for six at Junkyard Golf is up for grabs! It’s as simple as sending them an email. Details here.

junkyard golf, crazy golf, minigolf, win competition, family

Home grown hero, and Olympic glory?


Minigolf, Lahti, Finland, 2016

Derek Bentall, perhaps West Sussex’s only minigolf professional, is to represent Great Britain at the European Seniors championship in August. The tournament is to be held in Lahti, Finland and runs from the 10th to the 13th of August. Bentall, of Woodpecker Way, Turners Hill, finished fifth in June at the World Crazy Golf Championships in Hastings. That result was enough to see him picked for the GB team. Lahti will be his first outing on the international stage.

Father-of-one Bentall, known to his minigolf friends as ‘Doctor Death’, said, ‘It was a great thrill to play the final round on Sunday in the presence of UK number one Michael Smith and Tour chairman Sean Homer in the final group with crowds and cameras on show. I was so proud how I coped with the pressure and have come a long way in three years on the Tour. Finishing fifth in the World Crazy Golf Championships gives me so much confidence as I hope to push closer to the top ten rankings in the UK by the end of this season.

When I received confirmation I had been selected to represent my country it felt a great honour and I feel extremely privileged to be able to wear the GB shirt at my age, 52, having been a lifelong sports enthusiast. I will be representing Great Britain in Lahti, Finland in August as Great Britain’s Minigolf Association is taking a team of six well-established players to the European Seniors Championships. It really will be a dream come true for me.” [Crawley Observer]

Congratulations Derek!

WMF, minigolf, crazy golf, olympics
There are interesting rumblings at the top of the sport …

And in other news, there has been a potentially important meeting at the top of world minigolf. The Presidents of the World Minigolf Federation (WMF) and European Minigolf Federation (EMF) have met with the head of the Olympic Committee of Kosovo in Pristina, where the 2016 World Adventure Golf Masters took place.

The WMF is striving for International Olympic Committee (IOC) recognition, which would be a major step towards minigolf becoming an Olympic sport. The WMF is the umbrella organisation for 57 national minigolf sports associations worldwide, covering over 900 minigolf clubs. The WMF is a member of the Alliance of Independent Recognised Members of Sport (AIMS), which was founded in 2009 by 21 non-IOC recognised members.

What was said behind closed doors is secret, but WMF head Gerhard Zimmermann said, ‘During our meeting, we received the complete picture and full understanding about the political and sports development of Kosovo during the last decade.’

Zimmermann and Kosovo Olympic Committee chairman Besim Hasani are to meet again at this Summer’s Olympics in Rio. Could minigolf be edging closer to the Olympics? Will we see the likes of Derek Bentall competing in 2020 or 2014? We’ve got everything crossed hoping so.

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


World Crazy Golf Championships 2014

I am sure there are many players getting ready to compete this weekend at the World Crazy Golf Championships.

The final Major of the year takes place at the Hastings Adventure Golf. Practice for the World Crazy Golf Championship starts on Friday 24th October and the 2 day event running across the weekend of 25th & 26th October.

Hastings Adventure Golf to host World Crazy Golf Championships 2014
World Crazy Golf Championships 2014 at Hastings

To ensure the event has a level playing field for all players once again all players will be playing with the new Official World Crazy Golf Championships ball (as pictured below), available at the course. All players receive this ball as part of their entry fee (and is yours to keep after the event). Any player losing their ball will need to buy a replacement for £10 or will not be able to continue in the competition, so players out there make sure you don’t lose yours!

World Crazy Golf Championships Golf BallBall for World Crazy Golf Championships 2014

Results to follow next week!

World Crazy Golf Championships 2013

The prestigious World Crazy Golf Championships took place last weekend on Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th October at Hastings Adventure Golf, home to three 18 hole miniature golf courses which is also known as the national centre for Miniature Golf in the UK.

In the midst of the storm St Jude, 18 year old Czechoslovakian schoolgirl Olivia Prokopova, won the World Crazy Golf Championships on a windswept Hastings seafront by a margin of 21 shots.

World Crazy Golf Championships 2013 Winner Olivia Prokopova

The event with its 78 strong field saw its first ever female winner, and Olivia was just one of three women placed in the top 50, with her best round of 30 on the 18 hole course.

Olivia has been playing mini golf since the age of 3 and at the age of 8, she came third in the World Crazy Golf Championships.  The competition is now in its 10th year attracts a field from all over Europe, with participants from Czechoslovakia, Finland, Germany, Portugal and Great Britain.  Olivia puts her success down to the fact she practises 12 hours a day and has been for the last 15 years.  She said that “If there is any way way I can play minigolf professionally in the future, I will”

The most aces in a row was achieved by Tony Kelly from Great Britain, with an impressive 4 consecutive aces.

Sean Homer, Chairman of the British Minigolf Association said:

It was a brilliant event and the spirit among the players during what were some of the harshest weather conditions I’ve seen in 8 years on the tour was incredible. I’d like to say a huge thank you to all the players, organisers, scorers, referees, helpers and supporters who took part in the weekend, along with all the team at Hastings Adventure Golf – it’s all of you that make the event such a special part of the BMGA tour and such a great competition every year. I look forward to seeing everyone again next year – hopefully without the particularly ‘crazy’ weather we had this time!

World Crazy Golf Championships 2013


World Crazy Golf Championship First Female Winner  from the Guardian

Full results from World Crazy Golf Championships via

Mini Golf coverage featured on Sky Sports

I was alerted earlier this week, by the mini golf community that the latest Crazy Golf Championship was to feature on Sky Sports at 10pm on Wednesday 7th November, straight after the tennis.  I pursuaded my husband to tune into the tennis after the end of the football match knowing that Transworld Sport was to feature the World Crazy Golf Championship from last weekend in October in Hastings.

Crazy Golf course at Hastings
Hastings Crazy Golf – home of the World Crazy Golf Championships

I finally tuned in over breakfast yesterday morning and the best sport (or craziest!) was obviously left to the last!  The coverage was great and featured a lengthy interview with Michael Smith (Kent Minigolf Club), this years winner.

Hastings World Crazy Golf Championship 2012
Michael Smith winner of the 2012 World Crazy Golf Championship

Michael Smith is now a two-time World Crazy Golf Champion and is Great Britain’s number one ranked player. He is the only player in Minigolf history to win the World Crazy Golf Championship, BMGA British International Open and BMGA British Championship, with victories in each of the three majors in the 2012 season. Since his British Minigolf Association Tour debut in 2010 Michael has won 19 BMGA Tour Titles and made four appearances for the Great Britain Minigolf Sport Team.

James Rutherford (Cambrideshire Minigolf Club) came 2nd with Olivia Prokopova from the Czech Republic 3rd. Adam Kelly finished 4th with Sean Homer 5th (both from the Kent Minigolf Club).

Watching Olivia’s coach punch the air as she putted during the streaming of Transworld Sport was interesting viewing, as at just 18 she is a professional mini golfer playing in competitions all over the world, having played the sport for many years.

Former Women’s Crazy Golf World Champion, Ruth Burke won the the Aces champion prize with a total of 16 aces.  I had the pleasure of meeting Ruth some months back at the Oswestry Games and she is a well deserved champion of the Aces prize.

This coverage through Sky Sports may have well whet the appetite of some mini golfers that play for fun to join in next year!

Don’t forget you can hire one of our portable mini golf / crazy courses for your own event by booking through this link.



New Competition – ‘Create a Caption’ Mini Golf March Madness

Time for another Mini Golf Competition!  It’s Mini Golf March Madness!

This month’s Crazy Golf competition is ‘Create a Caption’ using this picture taken by Marion Homer of  Kent Mini Golf Club during the World Crazy Golf Championships at Hastings Seafront on 31st October 2010.

What are these mini golfers thinking?
World Crazy Golf Championships 2010 on Hastings Seafront

The image which features several British Mini Golfers, which I am sure will produce some interesting captions along the way!

What exactly is Richard thinking leading into his next putt and while Tim and Sean certainly have some interesting looks on their faces, what is Brad thinking as he approaches his next putt?

To enter the contest please comment on our Crazy Golf Facebook page with your caption and we will be giving away a mini golf prize to the most innovative and entertaining one – nothing inappropriate or offensive please!

All entrants must reside in the UK, but if any of our Overseas followers would like to add a caption, feel free to join in the fun.

The competition runs through to Wednesday 21st March and the winner will be announced at 12pm.

Please feel free to share our Facebook page!

Don’t forget the season is under way and we are available for portable crazy golf course hire –  a great attraction to add fun to any event.

Call or email us to check availability or our

National Booking Line on 01284 700402