In the pink at Keith Pedlar Friendship Trophy
It turned out to be one of the most memorable days in Flying Club Swingers' history, as friends of the late Keith Eustace-Pedlar gathered at Manor House Golf Club in Castle Combe, Wiltshire to celebrate his life and everything he had done for our wonderful golfing community. Manor House is where we first met Keith in 2006 at the Season 2 Final and it was emotional day for those of us who had memories of that event to gather once again at this stunning course. Back in Season 2, the heavy rain meant many of our finalists had to walk in, although not Keith who stuck at it to win the Fun Swingers competition. But how fitting that on our return, we were met with beautiful autumn blue skies. Our guests were asked to wear pink - Keith's favourite colour - and there were some stunning outfits on display. In fact, the venue was a sea of pink as we also provided pink balloons for each of two mulligans that could be purchased to raise money for Seafarers UK. It was fantastic to see the buggies head off down the course with pink balloons flying, and every time a mulligan was taken there was a pink balloon sailing into the sky! The goody bags included a sleeve of Srixon balls with the new Keith Pedlar Friendship Trophy logo kindly donated by Srixon, and a superb brochure with photos and memories of Keith created by the brand design team at Virgin Atlantic. We were also humbled to be joined by Keith's family, including his daughter Katrina, who brought along a selection of photos of Keith away from the golf course which were wonderful to see. After bacon rolls, it was time for the fun to start. We are pretty sure all the mulligans were taken but there was still some excellent golf being played. Unlike our normal Flying Club society days, we had a Longest Drive and Nearest the Pin with a difference! On the Nearest the Pin, our guests were asked to use a 7 iron with a ridiculously small club face which brought a lot of laughter. Congratulations to Jurgen Schwabe for winning it! The Longest Drive created even more laughs! Many years back, Keith had donated to us a huge red driver which weighed a ton, and this day seemed like the perfect opportunity to bring it back out! Well done to Mahesh Mani who managed to hit it all of 80 yards onto the fairway to win prizes donated by Level 4 Golf. The best dressed competition was a hotly contested affair, but the winning prize went to Keith's daughter's father-in-law, Alan Tonks, who not only dressed in pink from head to toe but also wore an Ian Poulter wig!
In the main competition prizes went down to 7th place, with Trevor Seabrook who amassed 37pts finishing seventh. 6th place went to Leon Loberman with 38pts on a countback, whilst 5th place went to Alan Horn with 39pts. Yet again, Alan had made the long journey down from Scotland to join us. 4th spot went to Ross Hewson with 42pts who won a Hertz Car Rental which was kindly donated for the day. The top three all had very impressive scores. First up in 3rd place was Morag Hutcheon who shot 43pts to win the Stewart Golf trolley, again kindly donated by our loyal partner Stewart Golf. Morag had been heavily involved in helping us put this day on designing the stunning logo and the incredible trophy which features Keith's original smiley face ball. Runner up spot went to Martin Derrick who also shot 43pts but won on a countback from Morag, to win a fourball at Gleneagles - an incredibly generous donation from our loyal partner, Gleneagles.T he winner of the day was fittingly someone who had spent a lot of time with Keith over the years. Sporting a great pair of pink plus fours and matching flat cap, James Gear shot 45pts to win a pair of Virgin Atlantic flights. Keith's daughter Katrina summed up the day perfectly as she presented the prizes. Keith would have been immensely proud of everyone coming together on this day. It wasn't about who won or how many points they got. It was about sharing the memories, playing golf with a smile and not taking things too seriously. Keith's status as Mr Swinger will live on forever. The proof of his popularity was there for all to see yesterday. We even had Tom Riddell and Bill Wilson fly over from the States to join us. Like everyone else, they understand the true meaning of our Swingers community and how Keith helped cement that. Thank you to everyone who took park and those sponsors who donated prizes. From the day alone we raised £500 for Keith's preferred charity SeaFarers UK, and this will be added to contributions from every space sold on the day.Keith's memory will live on forever and in doing so will ensure that we celebrate Swingers for what it really stands for - fun, laughter and friendship in golf. Keep on Swinging and see you in Season 15!