Hosted by popular local ‘Pay & Play’ golf club Addington Court GC, on Featherbed Lane in Croydon, FootGolf kicks off just after Noon on Sunday 30th June 2013, with around 60 competitors expected to try this exciting and very addictive new sport.
Organised by the UK FootGolf Association (UKFG), the sport’s governing body, this Sunday’s event will be played on a specially-created FootGolf course at the club.
In FootGolf, players try to get a football into a super-sized golf hole in the fewest kicks (ie: strokes) as possible. Just like golf, competitors combine power and precision to make a low score. Holes can be as long as 350 yards, although most are the ‘Par Three’ type lengths in normal golfing terms.
2013 is FootGolf’s first season in England, after a successful launch event in the USA in July 2012. On that day, British competitor Mike O’Connor finished third, and decided to bring the sport back to the UK. A series of events are running throughout England this year. “Reactions have been amazing everywhere” said O’Connor, from York. “Even if you can no longer play football, for whatever reason, you can play FootGolf. We’ve had players aged from 6 years old up to 74 so far this year, and everyone – young or old, male or female – has a fantastic time.
“FootGolf is great exercise,” he said, “but you don’t get tackled or out of breath! Most adults can kick a ball over 50 yards, although downhill and with the wind it can go a lot further, and with FootGolf holes averaging 120 yards or so, the 18-hole scores can match ‘real’ golf quite closely. Scores in the 60s are not uncommon, although most people would be thrilled to break 80.”
FootGolf involves a normal Size 5 football, with holes of between 20-21 inches (52-53 cm) prepared on areas of the golf course prepared where golfers would not normally play, to protect the greens, fairways and tees.
Paul Oliver, Director of Golf at Addington Court GC says: “We’re really excited to be launching FootGolf in the area this Sunday. We’ve created a special 2000-yard, 18-hole course, with features Par 3s, par 4s and even a 350-yard Par 5 which will test even the best FootGolfers. The course uses the natural landscape but preserves the great condition of the playing surfaces for our regular golfers.
“It’s for all ages and both sexes. It’s no surprise that a lot of our regular Junior golfers have been testing out the new FootGolf course after their regular game of golf – and some could become joint FootGolf and Golf professionals! We’ve contacted some local football teams to try and get them involved on Sunday, to warm up for the new season.
“We expect around sixty people will play on Sunday, but we want as many people as possible to come along. With CrystalPalace being promoted, and now FootGolf being launched here, it’s been an exciting sports summer for Croydon so far!”
Competitors pay £15 to play (£7.50 for under-16s), and for this Sunday’s event you can book by calling Addington Court on 020 8657 0281, or via the FootGolf website at www.footgolfengland.co.uk