Sussex golfer Tree tells of European Tour delight
Golf At Goodwood ambassador Toby Tree achieved a major breakthrough in his career in Spain when he teed up in the competitive Q School Tournament.
With only 25 spots available on the prestigious European Tour, the Sussex based 25-year-old got off to a great start finishing nine-under after the first two rounds. As the competition progressed Tree continued to excel, going into the final day with a healthy cushion of 14 under.
Tree said: “On the course I felt comfortable and confident, but off the course the stuff that goes through your head is ridiculous, I found it hardest in the evenings to fill my time.”
“Last season was a little disappointing, I had a great start to the year but things fell apart towards the end, especially when I picked up an injury playing in Ireland.
“To get a place on the 2020 European Tour means an enormous amount, it is something I always dreamt of when I was younger, so to finally stand here with a card is unbelievable.
“I am planning to celebrate this moment for sure, you work so hard across the year and the injuries don’t make it easy but you’ve got to get up and carry on, celebrating the good times when they happen.”
A regular on both championship courses at Goodwood, Tree was first selected to play for England at the tender age of 14 and went on to represent his country at both junior and senior amateur level.
On the international stage, Tree was a member of the successful Great Britain and Northern Ireland team that won the Jaques Leglise Trophy against Europe in Spain and he also represented England in the prestigious European Team Championships.
His rapid rise up the amateur rankings accelerated in 2014 when he won the Welsh Amateur Championship and broke into the world’s top 15 amateurs. At the end of 2014, Tree turned professional.
Tree, who supports the 100 plus junior members with performance masterclasses at Goodwood, added; “The set up at Goodwood has been fantastic for my training and personally helped me a lot with my game.
“When practising it’s great to play with friends and in groups and Goodwood host some great events, with a particular highlight being the Goodwood Pro-Am.”
At a recent awards ceremony the Chichester veterans received awards and trophies to commemorate their individual and team achievements over the 2019 season.
The group are: Bob Gale (Founders Trophy); Norman Moore (Summer Plate Singles); Don Phillips (Claret Jug); George Bell (Vets Captain with the Captain’s Cup); Andrew Grant (Summer Doubles); Don Hagell (John Venables Trophy); Mel Kirk (Autumn Trophy); Mike Beer (Spring Trophy). Seated left to right, Chris Penny (Rob Baldwin Award and Order of Merit Trophy and Summer Doubles with Andrew Grant); Mike Snuggs (Champions Trophy Scratch) and Summer Singles); Brian Burn (Summer Eclectic and Remembrance Day Shield).
Not pictured is Campbell Goldsmid who won the Champions Trophy (handicap) and the Champion Seniors Cup (nett). Mike Arthur, the winner of the division four summer eclectic is also missing from the group, and Martin Powell-Jones, who won the Royal Garden Trophy.
Every November Cowdray seniors compete in the Elliott Cup. This Stableford is different as players are restricted to two clubs and a putter instead of the normal 14 clubs.
Fifty-six seniors played in wintry weather although the course was in good condition and the greens were quick. The winner with 34 points was David Heard and runner-up with 33 points was Dave Hirons.
Heard’s club choice was a three rescue and a nine iron. He managed a birdie on the par four 12th hole and sank a 25ft putt on the last for a par four to secure a narrow victory.
The Triple Six is another interesting variation of golf. It is played with drawn pairs who play foursomes for the first six holes, greensomes for the middle six and better ball for the closing holes.
Thirty four pairs played in the Triple Six. The course was in remarkable condition considering the recent heavy rain although it was too wet in places for buggies.
Leaders in the clubhouse for most of the competition were Cliff Davis and John Renwick on 37 points. But the course dried out in the wind and sunshine which helped the later starters. First Chris Blatchly and Philip Singer came in with 43 points, then John How and Allen Sibley recorded 43 to win on countback.