A rare sunny weekend in Wales this September saw Members from around the UK descend on the prestigious Celtic Manor Resort for the inaugural crazy golf championship. Although best known for its 2010 Ryder Cup golf course this was an entirely different type of golf, one which would inspire an afternoon of laughter, shinanigans and reveal true champions.
Arriving early afternoon, the Resort had kindly allowed us to arrange twenty Aston Martins at the front of the hotel. Much to the delight of other guests and visitors to the hotel, who mingled with Members enjoying the sunshine, conversation and a few drinks. The Resort also allowed Aston Martin Bristol to drive a DB11 into the lobby, creating possibly the best parking place ever. Many of you may have seen the video of this on our Facebook Page, if you haven't it is certainly worth a view.
With the display of cars in place and all Members checked in to our VIP Signature rooms, attentions turned to the competition at hand. There are two 'adventure' golf courses; Celtic Challenge and the Golf Legends. The former a mixture of dragons, Celtic crosses, cliffs and even a raft across water. Whilst the Legends course very cleverly recreated holes from famous course around the world. While putting into the mouth of a dragon it is hard to take the competition seriously, and whilst some were focused on the Taittinger Champagne prizes, laughter could be hear constantly across the two courses.
After the competition it was time to relax and before dinner the Resort spoilt us with complementary drinks on a private patio next to the Epicure restaurant. The restaurant is the resort's fine dining experience and it had been closed exclusive for our Members. The Michelin starred chef Richard Davies created a fantastic menu especially for Members, with Ravioli of Cornish crab to start, a delicious saddle of Welsh lamb main course and Vanilla parfait to finish with a selection of Pelican Rouge coffee.
Then, quite anticipation descended on the room as the results of the golf competition were announced. The team prize of a bottle of Taittinger champagne went to Tim Butcher and Mark Donoghue, who were 3 shots clear of the next closest pair. Stunning rounds of 29 and 31 saw the individual prize and winner of the inaugural AMOC Mini Golf Championship 2016 go to Mark Donoghue, again receiving a bottle of Taittinger Champagne. However, as with all major golf tournaments anyone achieving a hole in one is presented with a new car, in this case it was a DB11 generously donated by Aston Martin Bristol and won by Andrew Jones who scored a hole in one on the seventh hole of the Legends course.
The following morning the display of Aston Martins left, but not before a large crowd had gathered to watch Mike Kenefick reverse the DB11 out of the lobby through the main door with just three centimetres either side of the car, to a round of applause. The morning weather was perfect and we embarked on a brisk tour of Gwent. Firstly to the Blorenge mountain, one of the highest peaks in Gwent and the resting place of the Olympic gold medal winning horse Foxhunter. Next some great driving roads leading us to our final destination the majestic Llandegfedd Reservoir, with award winning Visitor Centre, for a light lunch.
A great weekend of laughter and fun, together with fine dining and a tour with beautiful scenery, the perfect Aston Martin weekend in unusual but glorious Welsh sunshine. Area 18 looks forward to hosting Members from around the UK again for the 2017 AMOC adventure golf tournament. Start practicing now!