The Open Championship took place across the Atlantic this weekend, and APT players got their own taste of links golf at the APT Ventura County Championship at Olivas Links. The wind laid down for much of the morning, but the sea breezes kicked up on the back 9 for the later times. The golf course played relatively fast and firm, providing a good links experience at a fantastic venue!
Division 3 led off the field and players took advantage of the early calm conditions, posting some outstanding scores. John Dwyer III was in the first group off and turned in a cool 37; Kristian Yeager balanced 8 pars against a lone bogey on the front to match his 37. The two remained tied headed to the difficult 16th (which played as the 2nd toughest hole of the day) where Kristian made a very solid par to take a two-stroke lead which he would hold. A closing birdie punctuated a fantastic 77, good for his first ever APT win, the Ventura Trophy, and a $225 Visa Gift Card! Kristian said after the round “this is a product of a lot of hard work and hopefully the first of many to come.” We agree on both points, Kristian! John also broke 80, claiming the 2nd place prize of a $100 Visa Gift Card. Andy Sturdivant, representing the Phoenix chapter, closed strongly playing the last 6 holes even par to finish third at 80. Divisions 2&3 played the APT Orange tees at 6505 yards and 60+ competitors played the APT Green tees at 6231 yards.
The low scores continued into the second wave of players in Division 4 and Division 5. Ron Araiza (Division 4) and Ron Rubin (Division 5) were cart partners by chance, but BOTH took it deep to claim their respective division titles on Sunday. Steven Ayala was the first to post a low score in Division 4, coming in at 81 highlighted by a first pump birdie at 18! However, it was Marty Rhinehart who made the turn with the lead after posting a two bogey, one birdie 37 on the front nine, with the chasing pack hot on his heels- including Fred Eggins with a 40 on the front in his first tournament in Division 4. However, Ron A had the best back 9 of the tournament with his own 37 to post a phenomenal 76, good enough for a $200 Visa Gift Card and the trophy! Steven held 2nd, five back.
Ron R also had all the right moves, putting together his finest round on Tour with a 79 to win Division 5. Post round, he said “It was just my day… every putt I hit that I thought I missed found the hole!” We love those days, Ron! A valiant effort in 2nd from 81-year-old veteran Fred Johnson, posting 84 to nearly beat his age- amazing! Ron took home a $200 Visa Gift Card and the trophy. Divisions 4&5 played the APT Green tees, and 60+ competitors played the APT Gold tees at 5831 yards.
Five players were within three shots of the lead at the turn in Division 2, with Northern California’s Matt Fegley leading with 38. Going off as the last wave, D2 had the heaviest winds on the back 9 and it turned into a survival round as no players could break 40 on the back. Matt’s 80 was good for a two-shot victory over the trio of AJ Fernandez, Mark Lytle, and Qailen Mingo-Long. Matt will return to the Bay with the trophy and a $175 Visa Gift Card.
In addition to the $1,000 in Visa Gift Cards paid out, the cash games were quite spicy with almost $1,000 in skins!
We thank you all for coming out to join us for a wonderful competition at Olivias Links!