THE KENT MINIGOLF CLUB
"unus putt rego lemma totus"
WMF NATIONS CUP 2011
JUNE 11th / 12th
Tantogårdens Bangolfklubb, Stockholm, Sweden
For full results click here and photos of the GB team in action click here
Since Captain Freebird founded the KMGC in
2006, the club has slowly grown into the monster it is today. In 5 years, KMGC
has had some great players amongst its membership and has achieved many worthy
feats culminating in becoming the 2010 Club Championship victory. At one point
this year, the top 5 players in the
The Force, Freebird, TK Max, Donkey Gringo, HIOK and Double Trouble
took their places in two
Here is a
day by day account of the British Minigolf Team in
Wednesday 8th June
‘What happens in the privacy of the
dressing room shall remain in the dressing room!’ – Unless you are the boot-kicking
As this was a special minigolf trip, all the players deserve a special new nickname for the Nations Cup. That means for the purpose of this report, players will sometimes be given different names. They are:
For being the National Team Manager, The Force shall be known as The Gaffer.
For reasons that will soon become clear, Double Trouble will once again become The Destroyer.
For enjoying super size portions of meat at Friday’s barbecue, Freebird shall be known as The Predator.
For wearing his usual copious amounts of sun cream, HIOK shall be known as The Snowman.
For his endless curiosity and love of asking questions, not to mention his endless wit, TK Max shall be known as the quiz show host Anne Robinson, though thankfully without the meanness.
For his memorable vocabulary when talking to his children on the phone, Donkey Gringo shall be known as Golfy Golf.
For his quieter on course behaviour, Squire shall be known as Where Have The Yee-Haws Gone? Or WHTYHG? For short.
For the round that will linger longest in the memory from the Nations Cup, Coach will simply be known as 24.
7 of the
team were either on the BA or SAS flights that departed Heathrow at 13:50 on
Wednesday. Golfy Golf had got an
earlier flight and went to sneak an early 2 rounds on the courses before
meeting half the team at the train station. The 4 players who flew BA had two
surprises. The first was seeing the England Under 17 football squad who were at
terminal 5 preparing to fly to
flights landed safely and the team headed into
Thursday 9th June
The GB Team had an early start with the first alarms sounding at 6:15. After a quick breakfast, the team headed to the courses to meet the two coaches, Björn Dinau and Eirik Seljelid.
Both coaches faced an uphill task in having just 2 days to raise the standard of the British players. But their preparation had been superb and they already had an exact line and ball choice worked out for over 90% of the holes. Now it was just up to the players to hit the shots. That was easier said than done as the courses are unfamiliar to the British players who are used to excelling on the adventure style courses rather than the technical courses faced abroad. The Beton course was particularly ruthless with any slight misjudgement in pace leaving at least a 4 foot putt on a surface that was like putting on glass. The Beton course made the greens at Augusta National look slow!
Björn andEirik were sensational coaches throughout the four days but were at their best on the Thursday as they showed endless patience and good humour as the GB teams struggled to get to grips with the feel required for the courses.
the signs were positive. For the
It was the
Encouraged by a decent start, the team headed to the Opening Ceremony in good spirits. The ceremony was a low-key but enjoyable affair, the highlight of which was the GB teams getting a special mention from Dr Gerhard Zimmermann for having two teams at the event.
Most of the team had an early night but there was still time for Donkey Gringo to give The Force a sound beating on the pool table.
Friday 10th June
‘Come on Alan…’ – GB team named a couple of balls Alan!
All the British players made good progress on the 2nd and final practice day. The day started with a 2 round tournament before more intense practice with the coaches and ended with another 2 round tournament.
GB2 decided they wanted to elect an official captain for their team so the 4 players each had one vote and they were not allowed to vote for themselves! Heaven knows what would have happened if the vote was tied but fortunately Squire won with a majority of 3 votes and took on the captaincy but without an armband!
The day’s two most memorable events both involved Double Trouble. At first she became the hero as she found a lost Australian child and was able to help the child find its way back to its mother. But she soon became the villain on the Labyrint lane of the Eternite course. The Destroyer took aim and fired the hard Euro M ball. The ball was smacked so viciously it bounced off the rail and straight into the left hip of Coach Eirik. Eirik didn’t make a fuss but was seen hobbling around the course with a limp not dissimilar to that of Herr Flick’s from the old comedy ‘Allo ‘Allo! Replays showed that she was probably aiming at HIOK who was standing behind the British Open champion.
Once again GB 2 were the stars of the show on Friday. The best performance was by Squire who recorded a superb 26 on Eternite. Over 4 rounds, his total was second only to HIOK who was starting to find his form. With further impressive play from TK Max, Coach and Donkey Gringo, the combined scores from GB2 were lower than those from GB1.
and order of play for the following day were posted around 6PM which added to
the growing sense of excitement in the camp. This was the moment when it really
set in that the two GB teams were about to go head to head with the very best
minigolfers in the world. Two particular groups stood out. TK Max had the honour of playing with the reigning World Champion
Jonas Gustafsson whilst HIOK was
paired with Oleg Klassen, one of the victorious German team that had won the
The team enjoyed a BBQ at Bjorn and Eirik’s apartment where a curious rivalry was on show for all to see and hear. WHTYHG? and Anne Robinson were enjoying a not so private battle of double entendres. Naturally most of them cannot be repeated here but suffice to say it was not behaviour you would expect from a responsible schoolteacher, though AK47 has probably heard much worse at home. Whilst Squire was undoubtedly the main instigator, TK Max was giving as good as he got.
The team seemed in a relaxed mood on Friday night. The two days practice had gone pretty well despite the intense heat and everyone was ready to do themselves and GB proud in the competition.
Saturday 11th June – Competition day 1
‘Shit happens!’ – Coach Eirik
Alarms sounded at 6AM as players prepared for a frantic 6 rounds of competitive play. GB1 were starting on Beton with GB2 beginning on Eternite.
was quite simple. GB1 were in Group A with
TK Max was first out for GB2 and led the
team in style. Taking inspiration from the World Champion, he scored 3s on
Team Gottfried made somewhat nervy starts on the Eternite. Coach scored four 3s and was undone by a 5 on Middle Hill was Squire had a solid round with the exception of a 7 at Flat Loop. Both recorded 38s.
HIOK led GB1 out on the Beton. He too made a nervy start with a 3 at lane 2 but played solid minigolf to record 3 aces and only one further dropped shot for a 35. Freebird went one better with 3 aces, the highlight being an ace at lane 16 and just one dropped shot giving him a 34.
Double Trouble was another who had a difficult start, dropping 5 shots in 6 holes from lanes 4 to 9. But she showed great character to score a -2 second nine. Aces at 11, 14 and 16 were the highlights as she fought back for a 40.
The Force got a great ace at lane 2 but 3s at lanes 4, 6 and 7 took him +2. Aces at lanes 10 and 18 plus a dropped shot at 17 gave him a solid 37.
As the teams switched courses, ‘Shit happens’ became the mantra for the morning as the players battled hard to recover from poor starts to their rounds. Nowhere was this more obvious than on HIOK’s first Eternite round. Lane 1 or Pyramids should be a guaranteed or gimme ace but HIOK hit an awful putt and scored an appalling 3. When further 3s followed at Passages and Stick, an awful round beckoned but 6 aces rescued a 31. Still a poor round but it could have been worse.
The Destroyer wished she could destroy the Eternite course, especially the Jump with net and the Sloped circle with kidneys where she scored 7s on the way to a 48. Things were going much better for Freebird though. 10 aces, including a hat-trick of the first 3 lanes and a run of 4 straight aces between lanes 12 to 15 were the highlights of an excellent round of 28. The Force scored a total of one more than that. Like Freebird, he dropped two shots but 9 aces including his own hat-trick of aces on lanes 13 to 15 gave him a 29.
GB2 struggled a little on their first rounds on the Beton.
TK Max dropped 7 shots on his first 12 holes which included 4s at lanes 4 and 8 plus 3s at lanes 7 and 9. But an impressive last 5 holes that included aces at lanes 14, 15 and 18 secured a 40. That score was equalled by Coach who copied TK Max’s 3-4-3 formation on lanes 7 to 9. Aces at lanes 14 and 16 were the highlights of her round that also ended with the ace on lane 18.
The 40 from Coach was one better than that of Squire’s who started well with consecutive aces at lanes 3 and 4 putting him -2. But there was no further aces and 7 dropped shots including 4s at lanes 7 and 16 left him with a round of 41. The best score of GB2 was from Donkey Gringo. DG used his Golfy Golf to perfection, scoring a solid 2 at lane 7 though a 4 at lane 8 was the only blip in a solid 12 holes. He scored 3 aces at lanes 2, 11 and 18 which was enough for a 39.
But from being the top GB2 player in round 2, he became the bottom player in round 3 as GB2 switched back to Eternite. 6 aces was a decent effort for DG but 3s at lanes 7, 10 and 12 meant he had to settle for a 33. Not content with shooting one 30 on Eternite, TK Max repeated the trick in round 3. He scored an impressive 9 aces including 6 in the first nine but a 3 on Pipe and a 4 on the Sloped circle with kidneys meant that despite acing lanes 17 and 18, he couldn’t quite beat his first Eternite score.
Round 3 belonged to Team Gottfried. Squire had a fantastic round as he went ace crazy. He was -6 for the first nine and 3 further aces took him -9 through 15 holes. Sadly a 2-2-4 finish robbed him of a truly great round but 29 was still a great score and a PB for Squire.
But Mr Gottfried was outshined by Mrs Gottfried. Coach had a very good first 11 lanes, being -5 without any dropped shots. But an extraordinary run of 7 consecutive aces gave her an exceptional round of 24. Wow!
Sadly that drama was not being matched by GB1 on the Beton though Freebird was continuing his fine form. He aced lanes 1 and 3 to go -2 and although he scored consecutive 3s on lanes 8 and 9, three further aces at lanes 13, 15 and 18 gave him an excellent. 33. The Force was struggling for momentum on the Beton. No aces in his first 13 lanes including 3s at lanes 4 and 8 was not the start he was looking for. Aces at lanes 14 and 17 were cancelled out by 3s on 15 and 18 to leave him with a 38.
Double Trouble had another up and down round. The
highlights were excellent aces at lanes 2, 5 and 18 but 9 dropped shots including
4s at lanes 4 and 8 plus a 5 at the 17th meant she had to settle for
a 42. Nevertheless DT was still
doing very well and was easily on target to thrash her 8 round score from
In round 4 it was GB2’s turn to play the Beton and it was TK Max who comfortably came out on top. He had a truly phenomenal start with an incredible hat-trick of aces on lanes 2 through 4 and another following on the 6th. But before you could say ‘New British Record’ a 4 at lane 8 dropped him back. But he bounced back well to ace lanes 10 and 11 for a fantastic round of 32.
24 was understandably still on a high after her 24 and she was on an even bigger high after acing lane 1. Things went somewhat downhill after that with no further aces, four 3s and two 5s at lanes 4 and 15 giving Coach a score of 45. Squire took his chance to close the gap on his wife. His only ace of the round was also at lane 1. 3s at lanes 4, 9 and 17 plus a 4 at lane 16 gave him a 40.
That total was tied by Donkey Gringo who posted an extraordinary symmetrical first nine lane score of 2-4-2-3-1-3-2-4-2! A very consistent run of 9 consecutive pars was followed by an ace at lane 18 that completed a consistent 4 opening rounds for DG on his international debut.
Back on the Eternite, GB1 were going from strength to strength.
Double Trouble did shoot her 2nd consecutive 7 on the Jump with net and a 5 on the Flat loop but an impressive 8 aces gave her a 39. That’s an improvement of 9 shots off her first Eternite round. Freebird did the Anne Robinson trick of repeating his first Eternite score in round 4. No hat-tricks for The Predator this time around just consistent play with nine aces in the first 16 holes. A slightly disappointing 3-2 finish on lanes 17 and 18 ensured a twinge of disappointment but nevertheless a sensational half tournament score for Freebird.
The Force had an average first nine of -3 but a sensational run of 7 aces from 8 lanes from 10 to 17 gave him an excellent 26. That was one better than The Snowman whose 27 was marred by 3s at Middle Hill and Labyrint. But 11 aces including one run of 4 straight aces and another of 5 straight aces gave him an Eternite total of 27.
half-way stage of the 8 round tournament and both British teams were, as
expected, pointless. That was despite round 3 where GB1 had a total score of
145, just one shot behind
A combination of the intense concentration needed to play the courses well and the warm temperatures that were consistently around the 25C figure meant that the last 2 rounds of the day were a huge test of mental stamina.
GB2 were back on Eternite for round 5 and despite a decent start to the round, Coach could not repeat her heroics of the 24 round. But with only 2 dropped shots, aces at lanes 1, 5, 8 and 15 gave her a solid round of 34. That meant that in the battle for Top Gottfried, Squire would move into the lead with a good round and he did just that. A solid 2 aces on the front nine was followed by 6 more on the back nine including a great run of 5 aces in 6 holes between lanes 10 to 15. That gave Squire a superb round of 28 and a new PB!
Donkey Gringo had a slow start to round 5 and was only level par through 12 but a run of 5 straight aces soon changed that. A 3 at Labyrint was a disappointing way to finish but it was still another good round of 32.
But the man on the move was TK Max. He’s been consistent in domestic events but has saved his best performances for when playing for his country, especially when wearing his lucky white underwear with TK Max and the BMGA logo on it. The true patriot got off to a quick start, going -4 after 6 holes then an incredible run of aces of 7 aces from 8 lanes from lanes 8 to 15 put him -11 with 3 to play. A closing ace on Labyrint gave him a sensational score of 24. Two 24s for GB within 2 hours of each other plus a 26 from The Force. GB may have been pointless but the standard of play was smoking hot.
Team Homer struggled a little in round 5. Double Trouble was destined for a PB on Beton but a 6 on lane 15 ended that bid though she did fantastically well to recover from that and ace lanes 16 and 18 for a 42. Freebird had his one disappointing round of the weekend. Had he scored a 2 on lane 4, he would have scored another excellent 34. As it was, he shot a 7 for a 39.
But the other two members of GB1 shot Beton PBs in round 5. The Force scored 3s on holes 4 and 16 but consecutive aces on lanes 9 and 10, and lanes 17 and 18 gave him a 34.
HIOK was now on a roll and started round 5 with aces at lanes 2, 3, 5 and 6. Further aces followed at lanes 8, 11, 13 and 14 to take him -8. He dropped a shot at hole 15 but a closing ace at the 18th gave him a superb 28 to tie the all time British Beton record with fellow KMGC player Rocky ‘Harry Putter’ Bullin.
Coach Bjorn tried a new motivational tactic to try to take the impressive standard of play up another notch. He was happy to share his strawberries but only for players who aced lane 2 on the Beton.
DG only scored a 2 at lane 2 but that was the highlight of a disappointing start to round 6 that included a hat-trick of 4s on lanes 4 through 6. He showed good composure to play the next 11 lanes in -2 but a closing 4 meant he ended with 43 and his highest score of the day.
Squire had a great round on Beton, playing 17 holes in a very impressive -4. Sadly he also scored a 7 at lane 4 and had to settle for a 37. But that was enough for yet another PB!
Coach also had a disappointing start to her last round of the day, dropping 6 shots on the first 8 lanes but rallied to play the last 10 holes in -2 for a 39. TK Max dropped 3 shots including a 4 at lane 9 but aces at lanes 3, 16 and 18 meant he finished with a closing 36 which was a solid end to an excellent first day of competition on the Beton and Eternite.
Over on Eternite, Double Trouble conquered the Jump with net by scoring a 4. She dropped a few shots elsewhere but 6 aces gave her a closing 40. Freebird showed great character to bounce back from the disappointment of round 5 to score a personal best round on Eternite. A run of 4 consecutive aces on lanes 5 through 8 plus aces on 4 out of the last 5 lanes gave him a clean sheet and sensational round of 25.
The Force wasn’t far away from that. 5 aces in the first 6 lanes plus 4 straight aces from lanes 12 to 15 were the highlights of a final round 27. HIOK had a good start, a terrible middle but a strong ending of 5 aces in his last 6 lanes to end with a 2nd successive 28.
At the end of a long day, both GB teams were still pointless but consoled themselves with the fact that they had played really well. The highlights were the two 24s but PB after PB for GB was a testament to the standard of play on show. No British player was able to match Fredrik Persson’s 18 but the team was proud of what they had achieved and were looking forward to Sunday. To further raise spirits at dinner, Freebird read out a text from 2008 coach Jouni. The highlights of which was a kiss of congratulations for Coach which Squire didn’t seem to mind and not a single ‘Oh dear’!
Day 5 – Sunday 12th June
‘What a pillock!’ – AK47’s kind greeting to TK Max about his last hole.
The final two rounds for the group stages were played in a shotgun start with GB1 starting on various holes on Beton and GB2 beginning at various holes on Eternite. But instead of playing one course then the other, players were required to play hole 18 on their starting course before playing the complete 18 holes on the other course then finishing off on the course they started on. And that makes the Alternative Vote (AV) sound simple!
There was still time for plenty of drama. The star of GB2 for day 2 was Squire. 4 aces on lanes 3, 9, 17 and 18 plus only one dropped shot on lane 6 gave him a superb 33 and yes you guessed it, a new PB! He followed that up with a closing 29 on Eternite. Speaking of new PBs, Donkey Gringo managed 2 of them. 5 aces on lanes 2, 3, 14, 17 and 18 meant he could survive a 5 on lane 9 and a 4 on the 16th to record a PB of 38 on Beton. 6 aces and just a solitary dropped shot later, he secured a PB of 31 on Eternite.
Coach also shot a PB on the Beton. She aced lanes 1, 9, 12, 16 and 18 with a dropped shot at 11 and 4s at lanes 15 and 17 for a level par 36. She dropped 5 shots on Eternite but 7 aces including a hat-trick on lanes 9 to 11 gave her a closing 34.
There are many great ways to end a tournament but TK Max showed how not to do it. His Beton round wasn’t his best but there were no disasters, just a mix of 2s and 3s plus aces at lanes 2, 10, 13 and 16 that gave him a 38. His Eternite round included a 4 at Middle Hill and a 3 at Labyrint but 8 aces had taken him to -5 for the round with just Flat loop to play. He had played the lane well with 2 aces and 1 two from three previous rounds but in a comedy sketch that could have been written for Mr Bean, TK Max just could not get the ball round the loop and the ball rolled repeatedly back to the tee. It was a nightmare end to a great tournament for him.
Double Trouble’s final Beton round was comfortably the best from her weekend and yes, another PB! Three aces at lanes 3, 6 and 18 and 3s at lanes 10 and 15 plus a 4 at 17 saw her secure a good round on 37. During her last Eternite round she once again turned into The Destroyer. Having struggled on lane 8 to hit the ball hard enough to get the ball into the net, she sent a shot over the net and it smashed into the gazebo behind. It’s a miracle the gazebo was still standing. It might have seemed a good tactic to take out the top nations by force but sadly because of the shotgun start all the competitors were still playing!
Her final round was sadly her second worst of the weekend. She scored a respectable 5 aces but 4s at Lightning and Jump with net plus 5s at Flat Loop and pipe were her undoing.
The Gaffer ended the tournament in fine style. He too scored a PB on the Beton. He dropped 3 shots but a very impressive six aces at lanes 1, 3, 11, 14, 16 and 18 gave him a 33. 10 aces, including 5 in a row on lanes 14 through 18 gave him a closing 28 on the Eternite.
It goes without saying that naturally Freebird also shot a new PB on Beton. An incredible 7 aces including a hat-trick on lanes 1 through 3 plus further aces at lanes 5, 13, 16 and 18 minus dropped shots at lanes 4 and 11 gave him a fantastic 31. He followed that up with a solid 30 on Eternite including 4 aces in the last 5 lanes.
So in round
7 there were 7 new PBs for Team GB on the Beton. But who let their country
down? The Snowman! A disgrace! Aces at
lanes 2, 3, 11, 16 and 18 and no dropped shots gave him a 31. He only escaped
being sentenced to the Bench of Shame because in his last round he scored 11
aces and no dropped shots to set an Eternite PB of 25! And that was after he
and playing partner Oleg Klassen broke the rules by having practice shots on
lane 1 of Eternite. What is it with HIOK
and rule-breaking? Though this time he was innocent as one of the tournament
organisers had mistakenly given them permission to practice. So no penalty
shots this time which was more than could be said for
As the last
scores came through, there was good news for
So after 8 rounds, over 2000 shots, over 350 aces and several thousand PBs, how did everyone end up?
GB2 scored 0 points and ended bottom of Group B. That put them in 10th or if we must say it, last!
GB1 scored 1 whole point and ended bottom of Group A. That put them in 9th or if we must say, 2nd last!
being the best team over 8 rounds,
The Force won the 2011 GBR Eternite championship. HIOK won the 2011 GBR Beton Championship.
In the 2011 BMGA Nations Cup Stockholm Giant Classic across all 8 rounds, DT came 8th on 332. Coach was 7th on 290 with Donkey Gringo in 6th on 288. Squire finished 5th on 275, 1 place and 9 shots behind his double entendre rival TK Max in 4th on 266. The Force was 3rd on 252 with Freebird in 2nd on 248. HIOK won on 237.
In the Women’s tournament, DT finished in 11th and last. DG finished 35th and last in the Men’s tournament. The good news for those two is that they join an honourable list of Great Britain players who have finished last at Major European and World tournaments abroad that includes Andy Miller, Rocky Bullin, Ted McIver and Alan Norman. And as Double Trouble stoically said ‘Somebody has to finish last.’
played well. Donkey Gringo and TK Max scores are very good with only 2
days practice on the two systems. Coach
knocked 67 shots off her 2008 performance. Squire
knocked 57 shots off his 2008 performance. Double Trouble knocked 37 off her 2008 performance. Freebird knocked 45 off his 2008
performance. What a sensational effort by the
The 4 KMGC
players travelling back to
But the biggest achievement – GB won a point! One small step for man, one giant leap for British Minigolf. I sense the Swedes and Germans are trembling with fear…
to all 10 members of the British team and coaches. Everyone did
Finally please put hands together and pray for the safe return of Freebird’s phone.
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- where do you play? what's your favourite course?
and if you're interested in joining the Kent Minigolf Club and want to know more
then why not drop us a line at email@example.com