The clubhouse was packed at Burghley Park for the annual presentation evening at which all the club trophies won during the year were presented.
Club captain Bill O’Driscoll welcomed nearly 200 members who were present, congratulated the winners on their achievements, and thanked Bob Collier, Kay Hircock and all the members of the competitions committees for their hard work during the year.
“Without their efforts, competitive golf would not happen,” said O’Driscoll.
“It’s great to see the clubhouse so full to support the trophy winners, which highlighted the excellent spirit among our members.
“I was particularly pleased to welcome Matt Payton, director of Nest Estates, who kindly sponsored the Club Championships this year, along with Sam Parker from Sycamore BMW who sponsored the BMW Order of Merit.
“We’re also extremely grateful for the support of our other corporate sponsors, who help make Burghley such a special place, particularly the One Group, AO.com, and Alltech.”
The outstanding performers of the year were Teddy Crooke and Jane Saggers who between them walked away with 14 trophies.
Both players won the most improved player of the year awards while 12-year-old Crooke also won most of the juniors’ trophies and reduced his handicap from 15 to 5.9 during the year.
Saggers reduced her handicap from 28 to 23 during the year and clearly thrived on playing with a variety of different partners, winning five pairs events with five different partners.
The most prestigious awards of the evening were those for club champions and they were presented this year by sponsor Matt Payton of Nest Estates.
Sanjay Nithiyilingam, in his final year in the junior ranks, took the men’s crown for the first time.
In an intriguing competition played over 36 holes in July, Sanjay put together two very impressive rounds of 70 and 72 for a total of 142 gross which left him well clear of fellow junior Keilin Harper who finished second on 153 with Richard Vaughan taking third on 153.
Harper did, however, have the compensation of claiming the net prize with a stunning total of 129, rounds of 66 and 63 which put him seven shots clear of Keith Duff in second place on 136, with Shean Smith third on the same score.
Sanjay will be taking up a golf scholarship at Colorado Springs later this year and everyone at Burghley wishes him well as he embarks on this exciting new phase of his life.
As usual, competition was intense in the Ladies Championship, with reigning champion Nicky Plumtree in determined mood from the start. She established a three-shot lead after round one which she extended further on day two, her rounds of 88 and 87 putting her 10 shots clear of Sue Churchill in second place for a successful defence of her title. Janet Duff took the net prize with a 147 total, edging out Nicky Plumtree on countback.
In the Seniors championship, David Cleminson took the Alec London trophy with 39 points, while Teddy Crooke claimed the Juniors Championship with an impressive net 72.
Mark Yarham showed great consistency in the LCP Trophy gross competition played over three rounds in consecutive weeks, for the trophy presented by Burghley Past Captain Les Pepper.
Yarham put together rounds of 75, 74 and 78 for an impressive 227, to claim the title by five shots from Richard Keal on 232.
But it was a different story in the nett event, where Keal took the title with solid rounds of 75, 66 and 68 for a total of 209, although he was pressed hard right to the end by Robb Tapp, who finished just a single shot back in second spot.
The ladies closest equivalent is the Latimer Trophy, awarded to the player with the best six net medal cards during the season. This year, the title went to Sue Churchill, who edged out Jane Saggers.
In the knockout competitions, Graham Camp and Steve Hopkins claimed the Winter League title for the first time, beating regular opponents Doug Hunter and Brian Barber in the final by 3&2.
In the Ladies’ Winter League, Helen Cox and Mel Griffiths made a successful defence of their title, beating Sue Adlam and Bev Harpham to retain their title.
The final of the singles knockout for the 1895 Cup was a hard fought battle between Bill O’Driscoll and Tim Chapman over 36 holes, with neither player willing to give way.
The outcome wasn’t settled until the very last green where O’Driscoll sank a crucial putt to win the title one up and become the first serving club captain in living memory to claim this prestigious trophy, which was the first ever trophy to be played for at Burghley back in 1895. Mark Yarham beat Andrew Sandel to claim the 1895 Plate trophy.
The Cottingham Salvers for the men’s summer pairs went to Andrew Carr and Mark Yarham who beat Bill Sewell 2&1 in the final.
Michelle Powell beat Sue Churchill in the final of the Ladies Challenge Cup Knockout, with Chris Clarke overcoming Jane Taylor to win the bronze division of the event. Elaine Brown beat Jane Mantell to claim the Midweek Ladies knockout trophy.
The Mixed knockout for the Swindin Trophy went to Jane Saggers and Josh Yarham, who prevailed over Anne Fensom and Bill O’Driscoll in the final.
The Single Figure Cup went to Barrie Dawson with a net 67, edging out Adi Ward on 68. The 10-18 Cup was claimed by Kev Lawrence with a net 68, with Chris Quinn a shot behind in second.
The Rabbit Cup (for handicaps 19-28) went to David Shales with a net 69, with Brian Ross-Jones second on 70. The PJ Trophy went to Bill Sewell with 42 points, ahead of Brian Tunnicliffe on 40.
The juniors section is in good health at the moment, with a number of promising players coming through rapidly.
In terms of trophies, Teddy Crooke was the one to beat, shooting a series of very low scores which saw his handicap tumble from 15 to six during the season.
He claimed the Junior Champion title (net) with a net 72, pushing Tommy Johnson into second place on 79.
Crooke also took the Latimer Trophy for the best Under 16 score, with a gross 87, again ahead of Johnson, as well as claiming the Luffenham Salver with a gross 87.
The John Price Trophy went to Joe Carter, with 38 points, winning on countback from Charles Agnew. Tommy Johnson took the Junior Open (Stamford Mercury) Shield with a net 61.
The two round Peck Memorial (net) went to Neil Nottingham with a 138 total, who also took the Tate & Lyle (gross) competition, played simultaneously, with a score of 152. Dave Tilley took second place in both, two shots back.
Several multiple winners appeared in the Ladies section with Jane Saggers claiming the May Medal, Francis Friend Bronze Medal, Ping 4 Ball Better ball (with Carol Johnson), Daily Mail Foursomes (with Nicky Plumtree), Golf Foundation Brooch, Bailey Foursomes (with Jackie Wurr), Autumn Leaves (with Carol Johnson), Swindin Cup (with Josh Yarham) and the Most Improved player trophy.
Nicky Plumtree was a four-time winner, taking the Golf Foundation Cup, Jim Shannon Trophy, Daily Mail Foursomes, and the Club Championship (gross).
Michelle Powell was another four-time winner, claiming the Jubilee Cup, Francis Friend Bronze Medal, Winter Eclectic (gross) and the Challenge Cup (silver).
The other four-time winner was Pippa Le Sage, who took the EGU Bronze Medal, Peggy Baxter (bronze), PJ Trophy, and the EGU Gold Medal.
Sue Churchill won the EGU Silver Medal, Latimer Trophy and BMW Order of Merit; Helen Cox won the August Medal, the Ladies’ Winners’ Salver, and the Winter League (with Mel Griffiths); Kay Hircock won the Peggy Baxter (silver) and the Quincentenary Cup; Carol Johnson won the Ping 4 Ball Better Ball, and the Autumn Leaves (both with Jane Saggers); Janet Duff won the Capon Memorial Trophy and the Club Championship (net); Maggie Friend won the Heart Foundation Cup and the Bolton Spoons (with Bev Harpham); Barbara Newell won the Barnes Bowl and the Autumn Shield (with Lynn Collen); while Elaine Brown won the Autumn Cup (with Janet Metcalfe) and the Midweek Knockout.