‘It was golf, but not as most people know it’ is one way of summing up the tournament with a difference at Brickhampton Court Golf Complex that was the SoGlos Gloucestershire Golf Day, in partnership with Optimizing IT.
The invitation-only event took the sport’s handicap system to a whole new level, opening the door for the accomplished through to the absolute beginner to win one of the medals at the inaugural sporting competition.
Damian Brooks and fellow professional golf coaches Jamie Rudge and Rob Watson were the first to prove themselves deserving of medals (mainly for patience), by preparing all at the golf-themed networking day for what was to be a memorable grand finale at the Staverton club .
Fresh from their lessons at the driving range, teams of four did battle in a competition that tested not just their golfing skills, but their running, the very etiquette and fabric of the game – and their ability to keep a straight face.
‘I am about to reveal the winners of probably the most significant golf tournament… that has ever taken place today, in this very spot,’ said a tongue-in-cheek Brooks, whose ability to keep contestants on the straight and narrow was admirable.
Geoff Smith, of county-based Optimizing IT, which partnered with SoGlos to make the day possible, said: ‘It has been great fun. For us, there was a serious element too. We are working towards becoming a B Corp business and like everything we do, it is important this is meaningful and of benefit to us and the community we live and work in.
‘Today was part of that. We are probably Gloucestershire’s best-kept IT secret – possibly the biggest IT support provider in the county, and we are part of a special business community.
‘We are already working with a lot of charities and sports clubs, but we do not just want to sponsor something and stand back. We want to be part of our community and make things happen.
‘Today was about getting people together, meeting new people from some of the incredible companies that we have here in Gloucestershire. If business comes from that, now or at some point in the future, then that is great as well, but today is about building relationships and making new friends.’
Businesses that helped make the day such good fun included Hazlewoods, Gloucester Brewery, Hartpury College, Smart Home Sounds, Nimble Elearning, Protrack Group, RRA Architects, Fleet Electric, Wagada Digital, Willans LLP, WSP Solicitors, Vantage Free Projects, Howard Tenens, Sibling Distillery, MF Freeman Group and Gloucester Rugby.
Food for the afternoon and morning sessions was laid on by the club’s restaurant, Nineteen at Brickhampton.
The event follows the first ever SoGlos Gloucestershire Shooting Day, in partnership with accountants Crowe, which took place at Ian Coley Sporting in June 2022.