Super Speyer wins
TOM SPEYER has claimed his first county title and continued a success story this season for his West Herts club. At Harpenden on Saturday he won the Herts Colts Championship when for the first time there were three Speyers in the field — Tom, 19, and br
TOM SPEYER has claimed his first county title and continued a success story this season for his West Herts club.
At Harpenden on Saturday he won the Herts Colts Championship when for the first time there were three Speyers in the field - Tom, 19, and brothers Ben, 17 and Harry, 15.
In April, West Herts claimed the Herts Champion Club title at South Herts and a month later followed by winning the Herts Junior Club at Bishop's Stortford, with the brothers playing their part in the victories. Tom, James York and Greg Schmidt were the victors in the Champion Club and Ben and Harry and James Gough, son of club professional Charles, in the Junior event.
At Hammonds End, it was Tom who made the running for the Colts title on a course which proved a demanding test for the field which included five scratch players, with only two of those competing able to beat the par of 70.
In the end Tom's two rounds of 70 gave him his first county victory by a stroke from Gareth Thomas of The Hertfordshire, 71 70, with Will Chambers (Mid Herts), 75 70, third on countback from Callum Shinkwin (Porters Park), 73 72, and Marcus Fox (Harpenden Common), 72 73.
Runner-up twice last year, losing at the first extra hole of a play-off to Glen Portelli (Brickendon Grange) in the Boys Championship and also the Colts, three strokes behind Ryan Long (Knebworth), Tom says: "It's nice to get a title at last, as I have been there or thereabouts. Hopefully it won't be the last."
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Brother Ben shot 79 78 and Harry 84 81 and Tom added: "We play together a lot at the club and help each other, and they keep me on my toes."
On a bleak day at Hammonds End, Tom's opening 70 - matched by Alan Glithero (South Herts) - was notable for an eagle 3 at the 520 yards 17th, no birdies and two bogeys, the rest pars.
In the afternoon he picked up three birdies, holing from 10ft at both the 12th and the 13th and at the 520-yard 17th, where in the morning he had reached the green in two and holed from 25ft, this time taking two putts, but having also dropped three shots.
Scratch player Tom has been a consistent player in county events, last year having the lowest return of 68 69 of 11 South East counties in EGU qualifying at Sheringham, being presented with the David Neech Trophy for the best individual performance, and also winning Herts Junior Challenge Trophy for the best stroke average from eight rounds out of 16 events.
Best round of the day came from Sam Claridge (Harpenden Common), with two under par 68 in the afternoon to follow an opening 80, and also beating par was fellow scratch player, Nicholas Davis (Old Fold Manor), 69 to follow 77.
Third place for Will Chambers was a fine performance which followed qualifying for the finals of the English National Schools Championship.
Andrew McCarthy (Harpenden Common) shot 74 72, Josh Gosling (Harpenden) 76 71, Alex Pinsent (Sandy Lodge) 72 75, Joe Smith (Letchworth) 72 75, Andy Griffiths (Mid Herts) 75 72. Christopher Ryan (Welwyn Garden City) 75 74, Robert Patterson (Berkhamsted) 74 75, Tomasz Anderson (Mill Green) 77 72, Matthew Spencer (Mill Green) 71 79, and Benjamin Lawrence (Porters Park) 74 76. After sharing the first round lead with 70, Alan Glithero slumped to 80.
West Herts go into the final of the EGU Junior Champion Club at Harewood Downs on August 9-10, and into the final of the EGU Champion Club at The Wiltshire, August 30-31.