Teenager Ed Stephenson has boosted his golfing credentials by becoming the first player in the 95-year history of Leighton Buzzard’s Plantation Road club to win all three “majors” in the same year.
Former Vandyke student Ed, 17, now working in his father’s oil recycling business, is the reigning Club and Junior section champion – and has now added the coveted Peter Taylor Scratch trophy to his collection of club, County and English Schools silverware.
His four-hole victory over the experienced Carl Mcdougall makes Ed the most successful golfer of the year at the 600-member Leighton club, of which dad Ada was Captain two years ago.
Ed’s latest win came after a nip-and-tuck first round 18 holes ended with a one hole advantage. The big breakthrough came on the second circuit when Ed, who plays off a handicap of two, carded birdies on successive holes followed by an eagle on the 520-yard Par 5 fifth. He sealed victory on the 16th, four holes up with two left to play.
“It was a really competitive match, with a lot of holes halved” said Ed who beat Josh Banwell in his semi-final while Carl qualified by beating Mark Reynolds.
Last month Ed won the Club Championship with a two-round score of 143 after a three-hole shoot-out with 26-year-old Jamie Stone …just six days after winning the Club Junior championship for the third time, with Brandon Waddington runner-up.
Says Club Captain Robbie John: “Ed’s game has really matured this year; he’s a credit to the club and to the sport.”
Leighton golfers had to be content finishing runners-up in the annual Captains inter-club final, losing to hosts Buckingham by just two shots. The Leighton squad of Robbie John and David Hawkins, Brian Carter and John Preston, Adrian Stephenson and John Latimer and Simon Rossiter and Graham Freer, beat South Beds, Millbrook and Beds & County.
Leighton’s Club team took no hostages as they white-washed Dunstable Downs 6-0 with wins by Robbie John and Simon Rossiter, Ian Rimmer and David Hawkins, Simon Enright and Chris Figg, Nick King and Will Sampson, Manny Barker and Peter Myrants and Robin Lawes and Darran Valentine.
And the club Seniors finished their home fixtures for the season in fine style, beating John O’ Gaunt 6-1. Skipper Peter Myrants and Chris Figg, Russell Rowles and Danny Nairne, Steve Shepherd and John Bettle, George Darbyshire and Harry Adam and Ian Rimmer and Geoff Allatt won for Leighton with Graham Avery and Keith Oddie halving their match.
Thirteen-handicap golfer Colin Mcleod shot a nett 63 to win Leighton’s September Club Medal, beating Tony Brinded by a shot. Jenny Stafford took third place with a nett 66. Other leading scores were: 67 – Joshua Rowles, Daniel Latimer; 68 – Simon Thornton, Brian Wilson; 69 – Lewis Scott, Kent Waterman, Brandon Sanders, Will Sampson, Chris Caney; 70 – Geoff Dimmock, Tony Conneely, Jon Evans.
CHAMPION….Ed Stephenson (left) being presented with the Peter Taylor Scratch trophy by Leighton Club Captain Robbie John.