Ongoing growth of Junior Tour Scotland delights Paul Gibson
The past president of the Lothians Golf Association and current senior vice president of Scottish Golf is one of the driving forces behind Junior Tour Scotland.
Set up to bolster playing opportunities for the country’s rising stars, it has just finished another successful season.
“The Junior Tour continues to grow year on year,” said Kilspindie member Gibson, who has a real passion for junior golf and has a say on Performance matters involving Scottish Golf.
“We are very fortunate to visit outstanding venues throughout all parts of the country, and the levels of support have been incredible.
“We continue to get enquiries from players/parents outwith Scotland, and this highlights just how far we’ve come in a relatively short period of time.
“The Junior Tour caters for a wide variety of players starting at nine years of age; whether it be the start of a players’ golfing journey, dipping their toes into the competitive arena, or a more established golfer wanting to test their skills, against their peers, in a competitive, but safe, healthy and friendly environment, then that is what we try to deliver.”
This year, Gibson and his team held events at Royal Dornoch, Kilspindie, Fortrose and Rosemarkie, Forfar, Rowallan Castle, Nairn Dunbar, Southerness, Newmachar, Brora and Murcar.
The season culminated with an Order of Merit Final over the Jubilee Course at St Andrews last weekend, when the titles fell to Royal Troon’s Freya Russell and Jack Mann from Fortrose & Rosemarkie.
“From the outset, I promised that we would try to be ‘inclusive, not exclusive’, wherever possible, and to take the tour to as many different parts of the country as possible,” added Gibson.
“I’m proud to say, we are ticking these boxes and I remain indebted to all the clubs who support the Junior Tour. It is gratefully appreciated, and they play a massive part in our success.
“We have had a truly successful season, with extremely high levels of entries, and so many players have developed both as regards developing as golfers, but more importantly, maturing as individuals.
The tour is supported by SCG Consulting, Calum Smith, head PGA professional at Royal Musselburgh Golf Club, Graham Fire Protection, Arnold Clark, Prodream USA and Macaulay Wealth Management.
“Along with two other sponsors, both of whom want to remain anonymous, they have helped immeasurably with our progress,” observed Gibson. “However, without the players and the dedication of the parents, there would be no Junior Tour.
“Coupled with the support of the Junior Tour team, whose contributions and support are second to none, we find ourselves in a very healthy situation.”
St Andrews winner Mann said: “The Junior Tour offers opportunities for junior golfers to compete against players from all different areas of Scotland on fantastic courses, we play links and parkland which helps improve my game.
“As a Junior Tour Ambassador, it has been great that I have played well in most of their events this year. The Junior Tour is a huge part of my and many others journeys as they continue to support junior golf in Scotland.”
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