Axe Cliff captains complete ‘Drive-In’ to take up office for the year

PUBLISHED: 13:02 12 March 2018

The 2018 Axe Cliff captain's Caroline Bond (ladies), Dave Morgan (men's) and Dave Bruce (seniors').

The 2018 Axe Cliff captain's Caroline Bond (ladies), Dave Morgan (men's) and Dave Bruce (seniors').


The second Saturday of March saw the annual Axe Cliff Captains’ Drive-In, where the whole club celebrates the start of the season welcoming the new captains of the three sections; men’s, ladies’ and seniors’, writes Dave Bruce.

As part of the proceedings, all competitors put lolly sticks all along the first fairway - and even the rough - to judge where they thought that the captains’ first drives would come to rest, before the ‘shotgun start’ to a Texas Scramble competition with teams of three, who have to then go to their respective holes so everyone can start as soon as the hooter goes.

This year there were competitors on 15 holes, this despite the weather trying its best to cancel the day.

With rain pouring down at first and everyone thinking that we would not play, the captains decided to delay their drives for half an hour and then review the situation.

The seniors’ captain quietly prayed and, suddenly, the clouds cleared, the rain stopped, and the course was decked with sunshine and blue skies, meaning one thing – game on!

The course was in excellent condition and all scored well with the winners being Steve Wakely, Simon Wellington and David Steele, who came home with an amazing nett 58, a score that included four birdies, a dozen pars and only a brace of bogeys – these coming on the difficult par fourth 12 and challenging par three 18th hole.

A close second were the strong team of Alan Kenworthy, Mick Swann and Sandra Walker with nett 60.

Countback was used to determine third place with another strong team, comprising Steve Bond, Mike Cottam and Helen Gaudie, with a nett 60.2, edging out the young team of Chris Glover, Andy Gabb and Martin Chapple.

In terms of who the new Axe Cliff captains are: Caroline Bond, who is the new lady captain, was the much-loved headteacher at Littletown Primary Academy in Honiton until she retired three years ago. She has been a member of Axe Cliff for some five years and lives at Beer.

The new men’s captain is Dave Morgan, who retired last year after over 40 years working in electronics production. Dave has been a long-standing member since 1997/98, but had a couple of years off in the mid-noughties due to the pressure of work.

He is now kept busy looking after his small flock of sheep at Stockland, where he has lived most of the time since he moved to Devon in 1991.

The new seniors’ captain is Dave Bruce, who retired more years ago than he cares to remember from his working life when he was a bank manager with Lloyds Bank in Devizes, Wiltshire. He and his wife Sharon moved to Seaton in 1998 with children James and Victoria. Dave has been a member since 2000 and is doing a second year as captain as he thought that was what seniors do!

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