Big guns head to the Maitai

The course record could be under threat at Saturday's Maitai Masters golf tournament.

With fine weather forecast, the greens in excellent condition and the rough short, the 67 shot by Matt Bulfin could be challenged, although that was set when placing was allowed.

However, some tough pin placements mean the Waahi Taakaro course will be no pushover as some of Nelson's best golfers have found out in recent years when scoring proved more difficult than they thought.

This has been confirmed with the course rating recently reviewed upwards and it now plays to 71.3 with a slope rating of 120, making it one of the toughest 9-hole courses around.

A full field of 72 golfers will contest the 32nd version of the event, battling it out over 27 holes. Among the low handicappers in the field are Nelson's Dave Riordan (plus 1.5), Rarangi's Blair Bavin (2.1) and Bulfin (2.1), a former Waahi Taakaro member and past winner who now plays for Golden Downs.

The local hope is Nick Riddell (4.1) who is bidding for his sixth title.

Further down the grades Graham Eggers will be out to claim his fourth consecutive junior gross crown.

While Waahi Taakaro provides half the entries, there will be good contingents from Rarangi, Nelson and Golden Downs.

The event carries extra status, being on Tasman's order of merit, and this year offers improved prizes for gross and nett grade winners.

Nelson Mayor Aldo Miccio will attend prize-giving at the council-owned course.

For further information contact Peter Watson 547 0147 or Gordon Davidson 548 7771.

The Nelson Mail