Sports car racer Dave Banwell used a driver of a different kind to win a golf Grand Prix.
The 54-year-old Heath and Reach father of two won dozens of prizes in his years driving high performance cars around Britain’s racing circuits, but focused on golf when he hung up his ignition keys a few years ago.
An established single-figure golfer, David added Leighton Buzzard golf club’s Grand Prix salver to his trophy cabinet after his best ever season, winning two trophy competitions, losing in the final of a third and finishing in the top five in a handful of cup, medal and stableford events for a last-gasp victory.
David won the Winter League with playing partner Jamie Stone, beating Steve Light and Peter Morgan on the 19th hole.
He went on to win the Wallis Cup, beating Philip Spratt Callaghan on countback...but then missed out on the 75th Anniversary Trophy, losing to double trophy winner Phil Coumbe on countback after both finished with 39 pts.
But with his top-five finishes in other competitions, David had enough points to be crowned Grand Prix champion, a title shared jointly the previous year by Sam Messenger and Scott Douglas. His end-of-season performance saw him jet up the table, beating leader Phil Coumbe by 48pts to 45.
David’s success on the golf course is normally eclipsed by the achievements of sons Josh and Ollie. But with Ollie focusing on his school exams, it was left to apprentice mechanic Josh who kept the Banwell flag flying, winning the Junior championship in his year as junior section Captain.
Says David: “The boys have won dozens of golfing trophies in recent years….it was nice to be able to remind them that dad can still do it too.”
Four Leighton ladies finished their “mulligan” competition with 28 points, with former nurse Oonagh Russell taking top spot on countback from Carmen White-Lawes, Zan Nicholl and Sandra Bellis.
With its licence to hold civil wedding ceremonies and excellent catering facilties, Leighton Buzzard’s Plantation Road golf club is holding its second Wedding Fair on Sunday, February 21, with 20 local businesses supporting the event. Doors open at 11.30; entrance is free.