The Race to the Stars, the finale of the 2014 NikeGolf Surrey RookieTour, took place at Wentworth Golf Club over the East Course on Sunday 28th September. Fifty-four junior golfers gathered to take part in this invitation only event. To qualify for an invitation a player has to be in the top twelve of either the Boys U12 or U14 Scratch and Handicap Order of Merits, or the top six Girls in the Girls Handicap Order of Merit. Points are awarded at each qualifying event throughout the year to determine those who can take part in the The Race to the Stars event. With twelve qualifying events in 2014 competition to play at Wentworth was fierce with all the RookieTour players vying for a coveted Wentworth start.
The day of the Race to the Stars events dawned bright and sunny and stayed that way throughout the day. The Wentworth Club was a prestigious venue for this annual event and the East course was in fantastic condition, with the sun shining and only a very light breeze, making conditions perfect for golf.
As usual there were five competitions being played: U14 Scratch and Handicap, U12 Scratch and Handicap, and U14 Girls Handicap. And of course there were those important Order of Merits to settle, as well as the Birdie Trophy for the player who scores the most gross birdies throughout the RookieTour season.
The Race to the Stars kicked off with the leading players in the U14 Boys Scratch Order of Merit teeing off at 1230, closely followed by the U14 Boys Handicap qualifiers, then the Girls, and finally the U12 Boys Scratch and Handicap competitors.
The U14 Boys Scratch competition was won by Enrique Dimayuga (Cuddington) with 31 points, in a round that included two birdies. 2nd with 28 points was Darragh Monaghan (Walton Heath). 3rd place was hotly contested by two players, with Alex Gadd (Wentworth) taking the spot on countback from Aadam Syed (Foxhills).
The U14 Boys Scratch winner also won the U14 Boys Handicap event. Congratulations to Enrique Dimayuga (Cuddington) on this achievement with a total of 37 points. Three players were tied on 35 points and countback was used to separate them. In 2nd place was David Gurr (Hampton Court Palace), with Babar Haq (Royal Wimbledon) in 3rd, narrowly beating Sam Allen (Surrey National) into 4th.
The Girls Handicap competition was won by Salysa Mason (Surrey National) with a great score of 40 points. Pavani Kumar (Royal Mid-Surrey) came 2nd with 37 points and Hyun-Ji Kim (Wimbledon Park) finished 3rd with 36 points.
The U12 Boys Scratch event was won by Joe Wood (West Hill) with a score of 28 points. Countback was used to decide 2nd and 3rd places, with Alex Keefe (Addington Court) taking 2nd, with Christian Gadd (Wentworth) in 3rd, both boys scoring 25 points.
The U12 Boys Handicap competition was won with a superb 41 points by Christian Gadd (Wentworth). Joe Wood (West Hill) finished in 2nd with a total of 38 points, while Alex Keefe (Addington Court) took 3rd with 37 points.
And of course the Order of Merit’s were also resolved at Wentworth.
Prior to the Race To The Stars event Aadam Syed (Foxhills) has already sealed victory in the U14 Boys Scratch OoM. Aadam has had a terrific year, scoring four wins in the Scratch competition on the RookieTour as well as two second places and one third place. In 2nd place, with two victories this year, was Enrique Dimayuga (Foxhills). Darragh Monaghan (Walton Heath) took 3rd spot.
In the U14 Boys Handicap OoM the honours were taken by Sam Allen (Surrey National) who had two victories during the year and who has enjoyed the RookieTour so much he has given up all other sports to concentrate on golf. David Gurr (Hampton Court Palace) took 2nd place, justifying his decision not to give up golf earlier in the year. In 3rd place was Babar Haq (Royal Wimbledon).
Salysa Mason’s (Surrey National) victory in the Race To The Stars event cemented her place at the top of the Girls Handicap OoM. Hyun-Ji Kim (Wimbledon Park) finished in 2nd place having won three times in 2014. In 3rd place was Marina Senderos (Silvermere).
The U12 Boys Scratch OoM was hotly contested in 2014 with Shergo Kurdi (Foxhills) narrowly taking 1st place by 1.5 points from Luke Stock (Farleigh), both boys scoring three victories in this year’s events. In 3rd place, with two victories, was Joe Wood (West Hill).
Shergo Kurdi (Foxhills) also secured the U12 Boys Handicap OoM,with Luke Stock (Farleigh) again having to settle for 2nd. In 3rd place and only 1 point further back, following a late charge at the Race To The Stars event, was Alex Keefe (Addington Court) who had two wins during the year.
Congratulations to all those who took places in the Order of Merit’s. To be in contention for an OoM requires consistent golf across a season and all the above named players demonstrated this quality.
The Birdie Trophy also came to an end at Wentworth. Enrique Dimayuga (Cuddington) maintained his winning margin by making two birdies at Wentworth. In total Enrique made 19 birdie’s on this season RookieTour. In 2nd place with a total of 17 birdies was Aadam Syed (Foxhills), with Darragh Monaghan (Walton Heath) in 3rd with 16 birdies.
A further level of excitement was added to the event with a Celebration Dinner that was held in the evening after the golf, during which the Order of Merit winners were presented. The Dinner was held in the magnificent setting of the Wentworth Ballroom and with over 140 people attending, both players, parents, grandparents and friends, it was a great success with everyone tucking into the sumptuous three-course roast dinner with great gusto.
The Race to the Stars event marked the end of the RookieTour events for the 2014 season. The prize ceremony for the season will be held at Pine Ridge Golf Centre near Camberley on Sunday 2nd November, starting at 1pm.
The RookieTour starts again in March 2015 and if you are aged U14 on 31st December 2014 and want to play next year then please contact the RookieTour at firstname.lastname@example.org