Michael Smith conquers Crazy Golf Championships 2011
01 Nov 2011 at 20:55 | Published by: JJM | Views: 9813 | News search
Winner Michael Smith (left) in group photo with some other participants. (Photo by KMGC 2011)
Britain’s top ranked player of this season, Michael Smith, won the Hastings World Crazy Golf Championships 2011, after a tied score and sudden death play-off against two other British players Andy Exall (2nd in final results) and James Rutherford (3rd in final results).
The score differences became historically small in this event: the 7th ranked player lost only 2 points to the winner. All top seven places were decided with sudden death play-offs, as two or more players shared the same total score. A statistical oddity, as the round scores of players varied as much as in any minigolf competition: only one player in top 10 had a round score difference smaller than 5 points (worst round vs. best round).
This tournament has traditionally attracted two or three foreign players to defy the stormy October weather of Hastings. This year the international names in the tournament were Pasi Aho of Finland (a resident of Germany), ranked 8th with total score 3 points behind the winner, and Olivia Prokopová of Czech Republic (ranked 11th, 7 points behind the winner).
World Crazy Golf Championships has been organized every year since 2003, now for the 9th time, at the Seafront minigolf courses in Hastings. The competition is played with local Hastings course balls only (plastic balls which have small spots everywhere, imitating the look of golf balls), and without any rules limiting the choice of putter to use. Players have been seen at the event with ”putters” such as a hammer, a bush saw, or banjo.
The final round is played with multi-ball rules: players of each group hit their own ball once, and leave it on the lane if it doesn’t go into the hole. It is allowed to intentionally hit your ball at the other balls and move them, in the final round.
The organizers usually have boosted media attention of the event, often very successfully, with publicity stunts such as celebrities visiting the event. Also fantasy clothes give a flavour to the event, but not so much among the top players, who tend to play the event with all the seriousness as they would play any other minigolf tournament.» results
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» video of a participant (Phil Botto) playing with his banjo putter