TEAM UP FOR A KIWI CLASSIC
ONE of the most popular amateur tournaments in New Zealand has started accepting entries for its April 2018 event.
The 10th annual Central Otago Autumn Golf Classic, which is now managed by PaR nz Golfing Holidays, will see more than 400 men and women players compete over five courses in the beautiful Central Otago region. Many competitors arrive as teams representing over 150 clubs throughout New Zealand and Australia.
Tournament Director Denise Langdon, of PaR nz Golfing Holidays, says the region is likely to be at its crisp, clear and colourful best for the event from April 9 to 13. The mixed field will be divided into four groups, each named for an Otago lake and comprising about 100 mixedability players.
The five courses involved – Alexandra, Arrowtown, Cromwell, Queenstown and Wanaka – are some of the country’s most picturesque.
The travel guides exhaust superlatives when it comes to describing the Central Otago region. Mountains, lakes, forests, cliffs, grasslands, rock outcrops and wide expanses of sky – ‘stunning’ is a word that applies to them all. And the host courses easily fit into the beautiful landscape.
Alexandra Golf Club lies on easy-walking sandy terrain near the mighty Clutha River and is surrounded by the high mountain ranges of the Old Man, Dunstan and Hawkduns.
Arrowtown Golf Club (pictured right) is set in rolling hills on the outskirts of an historic gold-mining town. Formed along the Arrow River below the Crown Range, players almost always have clear views of Coronet Peak and the Remarkables during autumn.
Like its Clutha River neighbour at Alexandra, Cromwell Golf Club is also more than 100 years old but has been redesigned in recent years by Greg Turner, who created a more interesting and challenging layout.
The Kelvin Heights peninsula is home to the scenic Queenstown Golf Club, which often features in classic postcard images taken from the gondola at Bob’s Peak.
The course is surrounded by Lake Wakatipu and framed by the Remarkables mountain range, which makes it hard to keep your head down. Golfers are afforded amazing views of mountains and shimmering alpine waters at every tee and green.
Like most of the scenic courses involved in the Autumn Classic, the award-winning Wanaka Golf Club is perched high above the Wanaka township in the heart of the Queenstown Lakes region.
Players negotiating the front-nine have views over the township to Lake Wanaka and the Mount Aspiring National Park. The back-nine has more of a parkland feel with tree-lined fairways and views of Mt Iron, Mt Gold and the Cardrona Valley.
A challenging layout following natural contours in addition to small greens make the Wanaka course one to be remembered for more than its imposing scenery.
Each group in the Autumn Classic will play every course, with cumulative stableford points determining the winners in multiple divisions resulting in numerous daily prizes, along with overall individual winners in handicap divisions and team awards.
“Now’s the time to be getting teams together for a great week,” Langdon said. “Most participants choose to stay in Queenstown – but wherever you’re based you are no more than about an hour from a tournament course.”
Entries opened on October 1, and PaR nz Golfing Holidays can help with accommodation, car rental and Air New Zealand flights.
For more details and an entry form, visit the website www.parnz.co.nz
The views from the Queenstown GC course are simply stunning.