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Captaincy

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Davie
haystongolfer
Diggers
Plunky
George1507
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Doon the Water
navyblueshorts
theshanker
Roller_Coaster
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pedro
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JAS
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Post by JAS Mon 08 Oct 2012, 9:55 am

No nothing to do with the next Ryder cup but a lot to do with 2014.

I've been asked and very proudly accepted the opportunity to be vice captain at my home club next year which means (all being well) that I'll be Captain in 2014.

So...who else has done it and how did you find it? Did you take any particular focus I.e. building up the membership, Captains charity, general promotion of the Club.
What are the pitfalls to watch out for?

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Post by barragan Mon 08 Oct 2012, 10:05 am

Congratulations JAS thumbsup

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Post by pedro Mon 08 Oct 2012, 10:24 am

To be a good vice captain I recommend you look at the European Ryder vice captains and emulate them: drink, smoke and fool around. That seems to be a winning combination.

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Post by McLaren Mon 08 Oct 2012, 10:35 am

Ditch the parking space for starters and don’t wear the club jumper with “captain 2014” on it to shop in Tesco.

Try everything you can to create a broader more interesting set of members. I really think means tested membership rates are the way forward. Golfers already seem keen to brag about being able to afford better cars (ok, low spec 3 series) and clubs so why not give them the chance to brag about more expensive membership.

On a serious note, I really think providing a route into the club for people with lower incomes/wealth would improve any club a greatly.

If there are local groups trying to promote sports participation make sure the golf club are part of it. Don’t be the fuddy duddy club that people sneer at, use the 2012 legacy and and future Olympic sport angle to ensure you are part of the community.

Get good local micro brewed beer on tap in the clubhouse. Golf clubs will forever sell terrible food – there is nothing you can do about that – but surely it is easy enough to ensure a decent pint is on offer?
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Post by super_realist Mon 08 Oct 2012, 10:40 am

McLaren wrote:Ditch the parking space for starters and don’t wear the club jumper with “captain 2014” on it to shop in Tesco.

Try everything you can to create a broader more interesting set of members. I really think means tested membership rates are the way forward. Golfers already seem keen to brag about being able to afford better cars (ok, low spec 3 series) and clubs so why not give them the chance to brag about more expensive membership.

On a serious note, I really think providing a route into the club for people with lower incomes/wealth would improve any club a greatly.

If there are local groups trying to promote sports participation make sure the golf club are part of it. Don’t be the fuddy duddy club that people sneer at, use the 2012 legacy and and future Olympic sport angle to ensure you are part of the community.

Get good local micro brewed beer on tap in the clubhouse. Golf clubs will forever sell terrible food – there is nothing you can do about that – but surely it is easy enough to ensure a decent pint is on offer?

Doh

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Post by dynamark Mon 08 Oct 2012, 10:44 am

Pitfalls-the lady captain
Wouldnt worry too much about charity try to improve something at the club.
I turned it down this year mainly as Im still full time at work but my chum has got the gig and they are running a couple of major open comps which is new for us and will promote the club.
Agree with Mac on the parking space and the clothing definite no.
Bonus should be you joining the county ex captains society after which is no bad thing.

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Post by super_realist Mon 08 Oct 2012, 10:46 am

Beware that all of a sudden you will be accosted by 600 members who know better than the greenstaff.

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Post by JAS Mon 08 Oct 2012, 12:11 pm

Thanks Barragan

Pedro, I'm already on it although I don't smoke but as old Meat Loaf says 2 outta 3 ain't bad!!

Mac, there isn't currently allocated parking for office bearers and I have no intention of introducing such stuff during my tenure.

You're right about trying to grow and broaden the membership. I feel bad for this years Captain as he's been the victim of a shockIngly poor summer, quite a few postponed events due to waterlogging of the course and a clubhouse refurbishment disaster (which meant the use of portokabins and a marquee - basically the workmen on the refurb cut through a main beam rendering the roof unsafe and basically putting the clubhouse out of action. So the club in general has taken a bit of a battering this year and membership levels have dropped. Looking at that in a positive light it does create and opportunity for the upcoming captains to grow the club again.

Super, yep expecting that one. It's a 'cooncil' course and of course councils up and down the country are subject savage cuts. The greenkeeping cuts now will probably manifest themselves in course conditioning a year or 2 down the line which will probably make it 'all my fault' Wink

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Post by golfermartin Mon 08 Oct 2012, 12:37 pm

JAS

Done the job twice in 1998 and 2006. Captaincy is a different job at one club to the next. At some clubs, the Captain is a figurehead not expected to do a huge amount on committee. Time will be filled attending all the friendly matches, social functions, being at the club every weekend, representing the club at drive-ins, dinner dances and the like (giving the occasional speeches along the way), attending regional Captains' golfing events etc. At others they also make him Chairman so he also has to deal with all the whinging too!

One thing I would advise is to shadow your Captain. Assuming that he has learned the role from his predecessors and hasn't just done his own thing, you will learn what is expected of you.

At most clubs the benefits really continue after Captaincy. The friendship of the captains at your associated clubs, membership of the County Past Captains etc. We are lucky in being able to join both Kent and London Societies.

Main thing is to enjoy yourself both as Vice Captain and Captain.

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Post by Roller_Coaster Mon 08 Oct 2012, 12:42 pm

Congrats JAS - enjoy it and do your best, no one can ask more (but they frequently will during that year...)

At my place we're quite a small and sociable club so I know all of the recent past captains at least quite well.

All of them are very pleased and proud to have held the office but they all seem to have been frustrated by being accosted by members slagging off a.n. other aspect of the course/staff/facilities/goods and services available (when it is actually all pretty good given the limited resource). However, when asked to formally raise in writing practically none of the people complaining would actually put pen to paper. So thick skin required methinks (along with fairly deep pockets I am led to believe?)

The only pitfall I have personally seen driven headlong into was one recent past captain that decided to make the traditional post drive-in buffet "invitation only" behind closed doors. (The tradition was that it is for all and sundry to enjoy.) Whilst (I guess) perfectly within his rights to do so, he managed to alienate most of the membership in one fell swoop after only about an hour and a half of taking up the post! Not a good start and I don't believe there are many that look back fondly on his stint.

The same Captain was also the only one I understand to have used the "right" to precedent on the tee. Again, technically fine but as it was previously unused it rubbed many of the members up the wrong way.

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Post by theshanker Mon 08 Oct 2012, 12:45 pm

Good for you, was vice in 2006 it takes a lot of time out of your life but hey its only for a couple of years. Enjoyed the experiance but would I do it again? Probably not. I think most clubs are struggling financially so doing what you can to streghten the membership in these times wiil be a hard task. Anyway the best piece of advice I got was from one of our oldest surviving captains ' Enjoy youself and if anybody starts to pester you with their problems tell them to put it in writting to the council'

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Post by JAS Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:10 pm

Thanks for all the advice guys....ha ha Dyna "Pitfalls - The Lady Captain"...I'll make my mind up on that one when I find out who it is...lol

Past Captains Society does shound good. I've also heard about Captains courtesy on other courses which sounds great but I'm led to believe not much used due to being busy at your own club.

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Post by McLaren Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:19 pm

jas

What about a 606v2-golf captains invitation at your club?
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Post by super_realist Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:20 pm

Can you get a bus from Edinburgh to Swindon Mac?

You still at Braids Mac? Some superb holes on that course.

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Post by theshanker Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:29 pm

JAS in Ireland we have extended the captians courtesy to the past captains year which was great used it quite a few times in 2008, also played in Wales that year and was also accepted there.


Last edited by theshanker on Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:30 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling)

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Post by barragan Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:31 pm

do many vice captains get refused as captain due to poor performanc?. never heard of any myself - always seems like a done deal as soon as vc is announced.

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Post by theshanker Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:35 pm

I do know of one club where the VC ended up in a fight in the members bar a few weeks before he was due to be Captain, he was throwen out of the club!

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Post by dynamark Mon 08 Oct 2012, 1:49 pm

Sounds like my kinda club.
I am reliably informed(by the incumbent) we had a bit of a search on this year for vice captain.
A lot of people were asked in private and turned it down for one reason or another and we were down to just a couple of guys who really were not 'ready' so there was a bit of a press gang sent out and we got our man.
Hes happy TBH and Im looking forward to his year next year.

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Post by JAS Mon 08 Oct 2012, 2:25 pm

theshanker wrote:JAS in Ireland we have extended the captians courtesy to the past captains year which was great used it quite a few times in 2008, also played in Wales that year and was also accepted there.

I like the sound of that, as regular posters will know, I do like to spread my golfing wings (2nd course, away Opens etc) but in 2014 I will be making a big effort to play most of my golf at home as it were.

As i've now made it a bit of an annual trip I'm looking forward to asking Pebble Beach if they do Captains courtesy :-o

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Post by navyblueshorts Mon 08 Oct 2012, 2:27 pm

Congrats JAS. Can't offer any advice though I'm afraid!
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Post by Doon the Water Mon 08 Oct 2012, 3:11 pm

barragan wrote:do many vice captains get refused as captain due to poor performanc?. never heard of any myself - always seems like a done deal as soon as vc is announced.

Just the ones who get a bit jiggly with the other members wifes

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Post by McLaren Mon 08 Oct 2012, 3:24 pm

Doon, didn't think you were the type.
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Post by Shotrock Mon 08 Oct 2012, 4:29 pm

First off congratulations JAS!

For those of you who know more than I, is this equivalent to a volunteer "Club President" for a private US club. (Paid club manager reports into the President, as do the various committee heads.)

Never been one myself, but my observation is that good listening skills are an important part of the job.

Best of luck with it!

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Post by George1507 Mon 08 Oct 2012, 6:03 pm

Hmmm, not really. In the UK, and especially in members' clubs, the Chairman tends to be the centre of the club's admin. The secretary, or chief exec or whatever title the day to day admin guy has reports to him. The chairman works with a general committee, or council, and they in turn work with sub committees on greens, finance, house, golf and so on.

The captain tends to have a ceremonial role, but they usually sit on various committees to show willing.

The captaincy in a lot of clubs is turning into almost a full time role. The captain's presence is expected at ladies' and men's matches, juniors, social events, club prizegiving, dinners and so on. That suits retired people, which in turn means younger members feel the club is run by old fogies.

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Post by Plunky Mon 08 Oct 2012, 6:21 pm

We've played a few UK courses that had a "Captain's Bunker". Sign said that if you hit into it you have to pay 50p or a quid. I always seem to hit into them, and paid up happily but wasn't sure whether the money went to a club social fund or maybe to a charity chosen by the captain ? Does your club have that JAS ? (and congrats by the way clap -- sounds like a busy time ahead)

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Post by George1507 Mon 08 Oct 2012, 6:28 pm

Usually the money goes to the captain's nominated charity.

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Post by JAS Tue 09 Oct 2012, 9:04 am

Yep Captains charity bunker is on the 18th...and the pin is usually tucked just behind it in medals Smile
And yes the money goes to the Captain's nominated charity.
I'm also thinking of introducing a 20p water hazard tax when it's my year I.e. everytime you go into a ditch or pond it's 20p into the Captains charity bottle!!

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Post by Doon the Water Tue 09 Oct 2012, 6:28 pm

Has to be the 3rd and 11th Jas.........two for the price of one.

For those not in the know they are adjacent short holes that share the same water hazzard.

I remember one occasion when the Captain walked onto the tee in front of about 20 members, he had courtesy of the tee.
The 'next' two ball contained a couple of newish members, one said something like 'who the hell do you think you are, we are next off'.
Another member explained the protocol and the guy was hugely embarrased.
The Captain insisted that they play first [as he was a nice guy]
You can guess what happened in front of the twenty members. Totally flustered he had a mad swipe, missed the ball completely, picked his ball up and ran up the fairway.

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Post by super_realist Tue 09 Oct 2012, 6:32 pm

I've never heard of a Captain getting courtesy times. You'd have to be a right bell end to use it though.

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Post by Doon the Water Tue 09 Oct 2012, 7:10 pm

Quite common SR.

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Post by Diggers Tue 09 Oct 2012, 7:20 pm

Quite common for the captain to be a bell end ?

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Post by JAS Tue 09 Oct 2012, 8:24 pm

I'd like to know the stats on the most frequently visited water hazard Doon, personally for me (and most of my playing group) the ditch nearest your "garden" takes it's toll on the 13th and a lot visit it from the 1st tee as well .

I just can't imagine using (abusing) courtesy of the tee. Surely not as prevalent nowadays?

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Post by golfermartin Tue 09 Oct 2012, 10:15 pm

JAS

At our course, it's not a case of "claiming" the courtesy of the tee, it's a case of the membership giving up the tee when the Captain (or the President) arrives at the tee ready to play. To be fair this only ever happens on free Sundays (when there are no organised comps), because at all other times, the Captain and President have tee times allocated. And normally on free Sundays, the Captain has a Charity Challenge, and where's the harm in giving way to one fourball playing for charity?

In fact the Captain gets very little for the time and money invested in their year, I don't think that courtesy of the tee is much to ask.

I didn't congratulate you in my past post, so many congratulations thumbsup

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Post by super_realist Tue 09 Oct 2012, 10:33 pm

Diggers wrote:Quite common for the captain to be a bell end ?
Laugh

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Post by Doon the Water Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:25 am

HoHo

As Golfermartin said the members give up the tee.
This was in the day of the ball chute on the first tee, probably changed a bit now.

Do you know that ball chutes have become quite collectable!!
Not so good a price as the wee Penfold/65 manny though, saw a Penfold one going for £1400 the other day.

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Post by McLaren Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:32 am

What is a ball chute?
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Post by super_realist Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:44 am

Mac, it dictates the order of play before tee times were established.

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Post by McLaren Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:47 am

Yeah, but what was it?

And how did it dictate the order of play?
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Post by golfermartin Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:49 am

We still use the ball chute! When the first tee is crowded, it is a way of sorting out the order of play on a "first come first served" basis. Once all members of a group are ready to play they put a ball in a chute, creating a "queue" of balls the one at the front is the next group to go. As you tee off you take your ball out of the chute and the next one in the queue takes its place. Can lead to arguments as to whether your group are all there and ready to play, but is, in the main fairly self regulating, and actual punchups tend to be avoided.

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Post by golfermartin Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:50 am

Mac

I'll take a picture of ours sometime and post it..

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Post by Doon the Water Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:54 am

Do you know Mac I was wondering if I should have put an explanation down for the kids!

It is a metal stand with a ball size tube with a small inspection gap.
You insert your ball into the open end when you arrive to play. Used at busy times it saves everyone standing in a queue on the first tee.
You take your ball out when it comes to the end of the tube and play, next ball up is next on the tee. If you were not ready your ball went back in the end of the tube.
Six balls in front of you the tube was usually a 30 minute wait so you could have a coffee or practice putting.

They could not use one nowadays as all the Herberts would cheat.

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Post by Roller_Coaster Wed 10 Oct 2012, 11:59 am

We've got a ball chute too.

Works quite well as long as everyone works to the same definition of when to insert the ball. Quite a few deem this to be "I've seen him drive in the car park - he's here, put a ball in the chute" whereas I thought the intent was that the ball went in the chute once the whole group is ready for play.

While "actual punchups tend to be avoided" a whole host of under the breath slagging doth generally ensue...

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Post by McLaren Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:02 pm

Thanks for the description folks. This is something that has somehow passed me by.

I guess guys like super and I who play a muni dont get such organisation.

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pic would be good, i will probably realise I have seen one somewhere.
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Post by super_realist Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:06 pm

Mac, there's one at Forfar, it's really just a pipe on an angle with a stop on one end. Balls come out in order and the related group tee off in that order.

Quite often the term "balls in chute" is used around times when Pro Shops and Clubhouses are shut (eg Christmas) to mean "first come first served"

I think it's more metaphorical these days.


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Post by Roller_Coaster Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:12 pm

If the link works...

Captaincy Others

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Post by Roller_Coaster Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:14 pm

If not

http://www.hunterpromotionsgolf.co.uk/others.htm

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Post by Doon the Water Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:27 pm

Wow that's a posh one.

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Post by Roller_Coaster Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:41 pm

Yeah - I thought so too, but was the first one I spotted through the medium of Google.

Ours looks like it was knocked up in a high school metalworks department in 1956 and is painted within an inch of its life. Probably to hold it together these days.

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Post by dynamark Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:46 pm

Those broken tee bins are a good simple idea keep the place tidy.
The ball chute harks back to the days when you could just pitch up on sunday at 9 am and get moving within half an hour.we use one of those new fangled telephoney things and book a set time. Wink

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Post by barragan Wed 10 Oct 2012, 12:51 pm

I think turnhouse in Edinburgh still operate the ball chute thing full time - probably not for medals i guess. Bit irritating if you're looking for a mid week evening game after work and turn up to find you've got to wait for a dozen groups to go.
My away club has one for use outside shop hours - don't think i've ever seen it used though.

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