The winning team ‘The Wrecking Balls’ (l-r) Deb Rapp, Matt Campbell, Casey Nipperess and Christina Nipperess. All smiles and happy faces from the first winning team of Happy Gilmore Fun Golfers. Image: contributed

Iluka – ‘Happy Gilmore Fun Golf’

A new era in golf has dawned…’Happy Gilmore Fun Golf’. The inaugural event was kicked off last Thursday November 14 and was played in teams of four, over nine shortened holes in the popular Ambrose team format at the Iluka golf course.

The main goal is to have some light-hearted fun in the cool twilight hours, starting with a 5pm shot gun start. And fun it was, starting with the naming of the teams such as The Wrecking Balls and Allstars. We think the ‘Allstars’ must have had a few tickets on themselves, because they were not so well placed at the finish.

The new competition attracted a good initial field of starters from the business houses in Iluka, with the aim of getting to know each other and enjoy the camaraderie that only golf can provide.

The 9 hole Ambrose team format lends itself to the demographic conditions prevailing in our society, particularly in Iluka. The aging population, together with financial constraints and time limits, experienced by nearly everyone, has taken a toll on the more traditional formats of golf. And playing in the cool twilight conditions was very pleasant indeed.

So, a short game golf with a ‘hit and giggle’ approach has been born.

Happy Gilmore Fun Golf is played over an eight week season with premiership points awarded as the season progresses. The winning premiership team will earn the major prize of dinner for four at Jack’s Fairways Chinese Restaurant. To add to the dimension of possible winners, mystery points will be awarded by Club Pro, Mark Adey, and he informs that no correspondence will be entered into, but says he is open to bribes?

Then, after the first season, a new season will commence and the teams will battle it out again in a new season of Happy Gilmore Fun Golf.

Our first winning team was The Wrecking Balls, sponsored by LJ Hooker, who fielded a very strong team. Christina Nipperess (LJ Hooker principal) covertly recruited well known experienced golfers, Matt Campbell and Deb Rapp. Together with LJ Hookers own, Casey Nipperess, they made up a formidable combination to win the first event. They were a delighted bunch of Happy Gilmores at the presentations, which were enjoyed by all.

Rusty Leeson, with his team The Ruffies, were jumping up and down with joy, letting everyone know of their Eagle on the 4th hole, but were very quiet about the Bogey on the next hole. Poor guys thought they were in with a very good chance, only to be overrun by the professional outfit, The Wrecking Balls.

Five teams fronted up for the first occasion at very short notice, and will grow as the event matures, and everyone can see what an enjoyable format that short game golf can be.

Many thanks to our Club Pro, Mark Adey, who set up the short course tees, did the scorecards and had everyone in stitches of laughter when he did the presentations. Let it be said that The Wrecking Balls are on notice!

Everyone is welcome, and for those players who cannot yet make up a team, we can certainly slot you into a side, so don’t be shy, come along and enjoy Happy Gilmore Fun Golf.

The Iluka Golf Club will also provide golf clubs and golf balls, for anyone without their own equipment.

By popular demand, next week’s shotgun tee off time will be delayed until 5.30pm to allow more Iluka business traders to join the fun.

Cheers and enjoy fun golfing.

Bob Wissink

The inaugural group of Happy Gilmore Fun Golfers ready to jump into their golf carts and do battle against each other on the golf course. Image: Contributed
The group of Happy Gilmore Fun Golfers relaxing after the event with complimentary party pies and sausage rolls, listening to Iluka Golf Club Pro, Mark Adey, presenting the winning team ‘The Wrecking Balls’ with their inaugural win. Image: Contributed