The Canterbury Golf Annual Awards Dinner was held last Friday evening at Russley Golf Club, and the 175 people who attended were treated to a fine evening of awards, fun, and stories from guest speaker Greg Turner.
The evening began with Kazuma Kobori (Rangiora) picking up the Eagles Promising Junior of the Year award. He was followed by Amelia Garvey (Kaiapoi) winning the Riccarton Park Golf Complex Girl's Junior Golfer of the Year, and Tom Parker (Russley) winning the Riccarton Park Golf Complex Boy's Junior Golfer of the Year. All three were interviewed by Rachel Thow and spoke with maturity about their achievement, goals and aspirations.
Three women members were recognised for their service to Canterbury Golf. Maryanne Marlow (Clearwater) received a Service Award for her contribution to Canterbury Golf's governance, and as Women's Rep Convenor. Kate Johnstone (Christchurch) received a Service Award for her contribution as Canterbury Women's Non-Playing Team Captain for a number of years, and being on the Executive and Women's Committees. And Dorothy Hughes (Russley) received a Service Award for her huge contribution to running 9 hole golf since its inception in 2011.
After the dinner break there was special recognition of the Flexilease Canterbury Women's Team who won the 2015 Toro Interprovincial, and Canterbury Sports Team of the Year Award. Each team member was presented with a special plaque commemorating the achievement, and sponsor Garry Donnithorne was presented with a framed photograph of the team. Memories of the victory were relived through footage from Holden Golf World's coverage of the tournament, a slide show of personal team photos prepared by Rachel Thow, and interviews with all the team members.
The best stroke average Liz Douglas and Vardon Trophies, were won by Momoka Kobori (Rangiora) and Nic Kay (Coringa).
Then it was the turn of special guest speaker Greg Turner. Simply put, he was superb. The audience were captivated with a mix of personal anecdotes from his playing career, and his views on course design and the NZ golfing scene. He told some particularly funny stories about famous players he has interacted with, and had the audience in fits of laughter. His presentation ended all too soon.
After dessert there was a special auction of an Adams Tour Golf Bag signed by Sir Nick Faldo. This was donated by John Pitman from Riccarton Park Golf Complex to raise funds for Sam Purdon who is fighting brain cancer. The generosity was overwhelming. Not only did the bag sell for $2000, but two other donors put $1000 each on top of this to bring the auction total up to $4000. Sam was present on stage, and was visibly overwhelmed by the generosity.
The Golf Warehouse Women's Golfer of the Year was again won by Momoka Kobori. Her achievements as Canterbury No. 1, winning local tournaments, and representing New Zeland made her a worthy winner. It will be sad to see her leave soon for the United States on a university scholarship, but we wish her all the best.
Oscar Cadenhead (Clearwater) won the Golf Warehouse Men's Golfer of the Year, rewarding his consistent performances throughout the season, including winning many local tournaments, top placings at Charles Tour events, and representing Canterbury.
Clearwater General Manager Andrew Bell was rewarded for facilitating some fine club achievements in the past year by winning the Trevinos Administrator of the Year. This included winning the New Zealand's best and Oceania's best golf course awards at the 2015 World Golf Awards, and again hosting the ISPS Handa NZ Women's Open this year.
The evening culminated with Rawhiti's Mene and Sally Mene winning the Trevinos Volunteer of the Year Award jointly. Footage of Holden Golf World's feature on the club was played, documenting the monumental effort the couple put in to firstly save the club from being closed down, then to making it again a succesful and vibrant club.
We congratulate all the award winners, and thank all those that attended this special occasion.