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Exciting finish to junior tour season in Northamptonshire

15th November 2013

CAPTION: Winners Charlie Salter (Whittlebury Park GC, boys nett), Matthew Myers (Northants County GC, boys gross), Ellie Darnell (Wellingborough GC, girls gross) and Millie Billson (Northants County GC, girls nett) at the Race to Grand Final event at Northants County Golf Club.

The season-long battle to find the winners of the second Race to Grand Final came to an exciting conclusion for Northamptonshire's promising young golfers.

The Moulton College Open at Northants County Golf Club decided the prize winners in a competition managed by the Northamptonshire County Golf Partnership.

Ten qualifying junior opens are used to determine the leading players from an Order of Merit, who then battle it out in the winner takes all grand final.

Fifteen boys and five girls teed up at Northants County after a season which saw more than 100 players taking part in the Order of Merit, which is supported by Titleist/FootJoy and Moulton College.

Scoring proved tricky in challenging conditions, but a number of players had brought their A game.

In the girls gross section Ellie Darnell (Wellingborough GC) held off Raynor Edwards (Whittlebury Park).

In the nett category Millie Billson, from the host club, took the honours from Rebecca Maclaren (Wellingborough) with the winner's younger sister Hattie in third.

County boy player Matthew Myers (Northants County) returned an impressive level par 70 to take the boys gross title to round off a season which has seen his handicap fall to plus one and he has been chosen to represent England Under-16s.

Second spot went to Martin Conley (Whittlebury Park) from Luke Barney (Overstone Park).

The nett section saw County Boys champion Charlie Salter (Whittlebury Park) return a card of 74-4-70 to pip David Walshe (Staverton Park) and Ben Jones (Brampton Heath).

Says David Davis, development officer for the Northamptonshire CGP: “This proved to be an excellent competition for the young players who took part, who gained valuable competitive experience playing on a variety of courses across the county.

“By working with event sponsors Titleist/FootJoy and Moulton College we were able to offer an excellent prize table for the final, which was played in fine conditions with the course well presented despite the recent poor weather.

“All the girls who reached the final have benefitted from being part of this season's Northamptonshire CGP County Academy Programme, which seeks to help young golfers develop their full potential.”

The competition has been well received by players, parents and clubs. Tracey Barney, junior co-ordinator at Overstone Park, says: “This year's Order of Merit has been a great success; it was an honour for our club to be part of the series. By organising the events in this manner it has given structure to the players' season.”

A parent comments:  “The great thing about the Order of Merit is the focus it brings to the season in terms of playing well-organised, competitive events at clubs that have achieved the GolfMark standard.” 

Richard Lobb, the Order of Merit organiser, adds: “It is a credit to the coaching programmes in place at club, academy and county level that the standard is so high. At some point all academy or county players have played in an event in the series.

“We are grateful to the involvement of Moulton College and Titleist/FootJoy for their sponsorship this season and it is hoped this event will go from strength to strength with plans already under way for next year."

1 st  Place– Ellie Darnell - Wellingborough
2 nd  Place– Raynor Edwards – Whittlebury Park

1 st  Place – Millie Billson – Northants County
2 nd  Place– Rebecca Maclaren – Wellingborough
3 rd  Place – Hattie Billson – Northants County


1 st  Place– Matthew Myers– Northants County
2 nd  Place– Martin Conley – Whittlebury Park
3 rd  Place– Luke Barney – Overstone Park

1 st  Place– Charlie Salter– Whittlebury Park
2 nd  Place– David Walshe – Staverton Park
3 rd  Place– Ben Jones – Brampton Heath

The England Golf Partnership (EGP) brings together the amateur governing body, England Golf and the PGA, to grow the game with the support of the Golf Foundation and Sport England.

County Golf Partnerships, involving the county men's women's and professional organisations, are part of the EGP's Whole Sport Plan for golf and an integral part of its vision to make England the world's leading golf nation by 2020 .

In Northamptonshire the partnership is supported by the Northamptonshire Union of Golf Clubs, Northamptonshire County Ladies' Golf Association, the Northamptonshire Professional Golfers Association and the Northamptonshire Millennium Trust.

For more details of the activities in Northamptonshire visit

For more information on the work of the Northamptonshire Golf Partnership contact David Davis, County Development Officer, Northamptonshire County Golf Partnership.


Mobile: 07846 142297


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