A total of 63 TTJ readers and their guests embarked for Brittany for the fourth TTJ Golf Challenge at the beginning of December. There was a nip in the air, but it stayed fine and calm, perfect conditions for golf and the crossing from Portsmouth to St Malo.

Travelling overnight via Brittany Ferries, the group had a chance to unwind and enjoy a pre-tournament dinner. As in previous years, the crossing was smooth, allowing everyone to sleep off the night before, with a quick breakfast prior to departure for the golf courses.

Combilift and BSW once more provided generous sponsorship for the event, with players receiving an array of ‘goodies’. Both companies have been loyal supporters of the Challenge and their close involvement within the industry gives the trip a true timber flavour.

The tournament was held on two courses, both set in glorious countryside not far from St Malo. Des Ormes has been a Challenge venue for some years and lies within the grounds of a beautiful château.

Pen Guen, a new course for the TTJ Challenge, is situated on the coast. The journey from St Malo is a short, scenic trip, rewarded by one of the most beautiful settings. The course itself is a mix of links and country holes, overlooking a magnificent bay and rocky coastline.

The relaxed attitude carried through onto the course and, while there was more than enough competition for those in that frame of mind, many players were returning to the game after a break or on the course for fun.

After a leisurely lunch and a spot of Christmas hypermarché shopping, the players headed back to the port for a priority loading, which allowed time for a break before the prize-giving and gala dinner.

The winners of the different classes received excellent trophies, presented by BSW and Combilift. These included one for the highest, shortest drive, which probably sums up the style and nature of the whole event – serious golfers can have an excellent game, but there’s room for serious fun and the less practised players too.

The top scorer for the event overall and winner of the TTJ Invitation Trophy, presented by TTJ advertisement manager Martin Gray, was Mark Harrod of PT Agency.

Mark was also, of course, winner on his course, Des Ormes, which was sponsored by BSW Timber. His final score was 38 points (winner on countback). And to round off his day, he also took the prize for longest drive.

The runner-up at Des Ormes with 38 points (playing off 10), was Gary Cooke of GE Electrical. The nearest the pin prize went to David Laban of DAC Contractors.

On the Pen Guen course, sponsored by Combilift, the winner was David Woods, of SSW Fencing, who scored 38 points playing off 24. Runner-up was Chris Tyrer of Butcher Plaster Works with 37 playing off 18. The nearest the pin trophy went to John McCarthy of McCarthy Design and Build, while the longest drive was hit by Nick Brewer of T Brewer & Co.

To round off the presentations, Brittany Ferries organised a raffle. The first prize was a five-day mini-break for four to France, which was won by Simon French of Osborne’s. The raffle raised £275 which will be donated to the Timber Trades’ Benevolent Society.