WHY I’M BUYING A MOUNTAIN BIKE
t a time when this great game is under pressure, it is unfortunate we are not doing ourselves any favours to protect it. Like so many others, in 2016 I am exchanging my golf clubs for a mountain bike. Here’s why:
1. The elitist aura of golf: Nothing is more uncomfortable than walking into the golf shop on a Saturday morning. As if the testosterone-loaded group of local hackers outside is not bad enough, you are welcomed by an unfriendly shop assistant with a look on the face of “you are not good enough to play here.”
2. My former club Waterkloof in Pretoria has a “rolling block booking” system. Essentially what this means is that there are large groups of people who have the same booking slots every weekend. When phoning rst thing on a Monday morning when bookings open, we are told that Saturday’s morning eld is already full. We were a group of mates who joined the club, and were disappointed when we found this out. Finding a tee time became a mission, and this added to the frustration.
3. Slow play & handicaps: It is sad that your magazine has been lled with these
Atopics in the last couple of months. It is even worse though that these topics heavily featured ve and 10 years ago. Despite all the e orts, we are unfortunately not any closer to nding an answer for this.
4. Cycling is the new corporate sport: Whereas the general Monday morning topic around the co ee machine used to be Saturday’s shank, it is now Sunday morning’s ride. Cycling is healthier, cheaper and quicker than golf, where lawmakers are too slow in keeping up with modern day requirements.
I still love the game, and will continue to wait up on a Sunday night to support Louis and Charl and Grace, but I cannot continue the 5½-hour frustration of every weekend.
On a more positive note, in December I was on holiday in St Francis, and I really wanted to play the Links course. However, I didn’t have any partners, and I gured it would probably be impossible to play 9 holes (even on a weekday afternoon) on a course of this stature. I took a chance and phoned the club – and the response was amazing!
I was encouraged to come through, and was met by the warmest welcome in their pro shop. Since then I’ve read on a few