There is a great semi-competitive golf tour in Ottawa called the Slammer Tour. The tour is owned and managed by Executive Golf, and has events almost every day at courses across the National Capital Region. The format is match play and the overall rankings are a ladder, so beat a guy/girl with a better ranking than you and you move ahead of them.
I played in a couple of events last year and have been trying to play more this year. In the month of June I made it out for 3 events and managed to climb the ladder to the #3 ranking, which I lost yesterday.
On June 15th I played in an event at home my course (Metcalfe) and had the opportunity to challenge for the #3 spot. The challenge wasn’t going so well on the front 9 as I started with 4 bogeys and a double through 5 holes and went out in 43. I was lucky that my competitors weren’t having a great round either so I managed to hang around. I started the back 9 with a double and was pretty much ready to throw in the towel, but was able to pull it together for 5 straight pars. Standing on the 16th tee I had won 2 matches (moving me into 80th place) and was 1 up in my last match, for #3 rank. I played 16 fairly well, but jammed a 10 foot par put 6 feet by above the hill. A 6 foot downhill putt to remain one up, I drained it dead center. I don’t recall the details of the 17th, but I made my par to win the hole and the match. I bogeyed 18, and walked off the course the #3 ranked Slammer. I shot an 84.
Now that I had risen up the rankings I felt that I should play enough to maintain that ranking (you drop 3 spots every 14 days of inactivity I believe), so I signed up to play on June 21st at Pineview, which is a municipal course with a bad wrap for poor playing conditions, but I was pleasantly surprised by the condition of the course, a blog for another time. Unlike last round, everyone was now gunning for me and I had to defend against the 63rd, 39th and 9th ranked players. I once again played poorly on the front (a trend these days). 2 doubles and 4 bogeys on the front and I was lucky to be 1 down in two matches and even in the third. I came out strong on the back putting up birdies on 10 and 11. Just like that I was 2 up, even and even. Standing on the 17th tee I had finished off two of the matches, but the last match was a great one, I was playing well and being equaled at every turn. I was 1 up on the 17th green, I had 30 feet for birdie and he had 20 feet and I made my only real mistake of the back 9 and 3 putted. We were tied heading to 18. I thought I had him on 18, I was 20 feet for birdie and he was 25 for par, but he hit a great putt and drained it. We played to a draw, I retained my ranking. I shot a 79.
My 3rd event of June took place yesterday at Metcalfe again and this time I was in really tough, facing 2 A players and an Open player, all with scoring averages better than mine. None of them had great rankings because they hadn’t played many events. As with the previous two events, I struggled out of the gate and through 9 I was down in all my matches after shooting 42 on the front. I also started the back 9 poorly with 2 bogeys and a double through 12. I was somehow still hanging around in 2 matches while being blown out in the third. I put together a solid string of pars 13 – 18, being good enough to close out 2 my other matches on 18. In the 3rd, he had finished me off on 15, claiming the #3 ranking. With the loss my ranking drops one to 4th. I shot an 83.
Up next for me is Kanata Golf and Country Club on Saturday afternoon, which is a Club Link course. I am not sure how the Tour guys swung this, but it should be fun. I have played the course once before, about 5 years ago and enjoyed it (and played well there). I will be playing to defend my #4 rank.
See you at the turn,