Jake jets off to USA for golf - and a bit of business

Jake Stoneham signs his contract
Jake Stoneham signs his contract

Jake Stoneham, a Year 13 student at Felpham Community College and member of Bognor Golf Club, has clinched a scholarship with an American college to study business alongside developing his golf and playing for the college’s golf team.

Future Pro USA, an international company based in London, helped Stoneham source his placement and scholarship and he has now signed his NLI (National Letter of Intent). He will complete a two-year business course at Dodge City Junior College in Kansas, whilst playing for their elite golf team.

The Cowdray pro-am winners

The Cowdray pro-am winners

On completion of the course, Stoneham plans to transfer to a NCAA (National Collegiate Athletic Association) university in America to finish his

business degree and possibly then focus professionally on his golf.

His teachers at Felpham CC said it was an amazing achievement that was down to his hard work both inside and outside of the classroom.

Stoneham said: “I started playing golf when I was nine and am a member of Bognor Golf club as well as playing for the Sussex under-18s team. I am studying at FCC business OCR, sport OCR and A-level geography and I am really pleased I was encouraged to apply for a scholarship and Future Pro USA helped me source it.

“I want to get a business degree and this is a great way of doing it while developing my golf and seeing a bit of the world. I am due to leave for America in August.”

* A total of 80 Bognor seniors took part in the Fletcher two Stableford competition, also known as the Reg Paine Trophy.

The first round was cancelled because of torrential rain in April and has been rescheduled.

The Reg Paine is normally the second in a series of four Stableford competitions run over the summer months with the best three from four scores winning the Fletcher Trophy.

Winner of the Reg Paine this year was Alan O’Brien with 41 points, second was Andy Isitt with 38 and third was Simon Bennett on countback with 38.

* Bognor seniors seem to be getting back into some sort of form after a five-match losing streak.

After winning against Petersfield they hosted The Dyke. The weather was dry and warm and Bognor ran out 6-2 winners.

Two noticeable wins were Jim Stephenson & David Turner’s 4&3 win and a 5&4 victory for Trevor Till and Richard Hedge.

Bognor were due to travel to Southwick Park but the match was called off because of severe thunder and lightning weather warnings – and as often happens the weather was clear. The match has been rearranged for August.

* Bognor’s mixed seniors entertained Lee-on-the-Solent for the first mixed match between the clubs.

The previous week a Bognor men’s team had entertained a team from Lee in Hampshire and suffered a defeat so the Bognor mixed team were keen to avenge that result.

The match started in high winds and light rain. All pairs found the first half of the course challenging. Eventually the rain abated and play became a little less of a lottery.

Bognor’s first three pairs responded well and there were close wins for Allan and Margaret Delves, Simon Watts and Sue Monger and Paul Black and Jackie Chamberlain. Rob Redmond and Penny Entecott managed a creditable half, having to overcome seven strokes on handicap. Lee responded with two wins, Jim and Eileen Morris and Ian and Frances Paine losing close fought matches. Finally Bognor confirmed their good form with wins for Dave Turner and Georgina McCormack and Dave Chalmers and Sue Sidebotham.

The result, 5.5-2.5 in Bognor’s favour, was closer than it seems as many matches went to the last hole.

The teams enjoyed a hearty meal afterwards with everyone is looking forward to the return next year at Lee.

COWDRAY PARK

Cowdray Park GC hosted their annual charity pro-am.

A record 49 teams competed in the event which consolidates its position as the largest event of its kind in Sussex and it is now a firm favourite in the south region PGA calendar.

The course, in spectacular condition with immaculate fairways and fast greens, received great feedback from the PGA professionals taking part.

Tim Allen, Cowdray’s director of golf, thanked everyone who had worked hard to ensure the pro-am was such a success. The event raised funds for club captain Shaun White’s chosen charity for the year – the Dame Vera Lynn Trust for children with cerebral palsy.

He added: “We were lucky with the weather and pleased we had such positive feedback about our course. There was a great atmosphere on the course and in the clubhouse. Thank you to all the friends and families who supported the players.”

Greenall’s Gin provided complimentary samples for each competitor. There were two ‘nearest the pin in two shots’ prize opportunities, one for the professionals and one for the amateurs, each winning a holiday to Vidago Palace, Portugal.

A Honda Civic, courtesy of Yeoman’s Honda, was on offer for a hole in one on the ninth but no one hit one.

Club Captain Shaun White presented prizes to the winners. The winning professional, with a five-under-par 65, was Alex Lodge from Calcot Park, followed by 66 from Adam Wootton from Oxford Golf Centre and 67 from Richard Wallis from Canterbury Golf Club.

For the amateur team prizes, third was the Vooba-sponsored team of Cowdray members Paul Fairminer, Mark Upton and Steve Mitchell with professional James Ablett.

Runners-up were the B and C Coachworks team of Chris and Wayne Robertson and Phil Goodwin with pro Scott Brown. There was a huge cheer for the winners, three Cowdray members and past captains with a combined age of 232, Terry Jasper, Dave Hirons and Harvey Terry, with professional Adam Wootton.