Kaituna Golf Club held a unique golf tournament on Friday 1 April using "night flyer" glowing golf balls.
With daylight saving ending, and darkness descending early, nine holes were played from 5pm followed by supper. By then it was dark enough to have a par-3 men’s and women’s “champagne” shoot-out using “Night Flyer” golf balls. The flag and edge of the greens were identified by special glow sticks, and the tee box lit up with a car’s lights.
Hitting the "night flyer" golf balls was a unique experience for all, and lots of fun was had as the balls flew through the air like tracer bullets. Nobody made par on the 145m (men’s) or 125m (women’s) hole, but winners were found using handicap ratings and/or a countback to the nine hole twilight competition.
The club is now contemplating a nine hole mid-winter “Night Flyer” evening tournament, and, with the popularity of the twilight games, a once a month 3pm nine hole round, teeing off at 3pm.
Points to note - the balls are lit by striking them firmly by hand on the club face. They then remain glowing for ten minutes. The balls can be seen from over 200m and are readily located in the rough, as they produce an observable halo (especially amongst the tussocks at Kaituna). Every time the ball is struck, it re-sets the time for another ten minutes. As this was the first attempt at such a competition, there were a few refinements that could be made, such as all competitors using head lamps and reflective tape being applied to the base of the flag sticks.
Check out the balls at www.nightflyer.com
Thanks to club members Ian Harvey and Peter Miller for this story.