Uniforms ease swingers

A lot of expenses go into Cayman
teams attending overseas competitions. One of the more overlooked costs is team
uniforms. The national golf team does not have to think about that thanks to an
offshore law firm.

Ogier recently sponsored the team’s
attire for the upcoming Caribbean Amateur Golf Championships taking place this
weekend in Barbados.
News of the sponsorship marks the third consecutive year that the law firm has
offset costs to attend the annual tournament. A monetary value for the uniforms
was not released.

Cayman Islands Golf Association
President Judy Van Liere stated that the sponsorship is important as it
confirms Ogiers stance as a keen supporter of local golf.

“The Ogier sponsorship for the team
uniforms is extremely important and has been a huge help in covering costs for
the last three years,” Van Liere said. “Ogier’s support started in 2008 when Cayman
was the host country for the Caribbean Amateur Golf Championships.”

This weekend’s competition is
slated to run 27 June-4 July at the Royal Westmoreland golf course (which is
known for the elevation changes and nuisances of the fairways and greens). The
Cayman team, decided during the 18th annual Cayman Islands Amateur Championship
in April, will consist of 14 golfers, two reserves and two coaches. The names
of the golfers (and the segment of the Caribbean
competition they compete in) are as follows:

Hoerman Cup – Joel Dodson (Amateur
champion), Michael Wight, Matthew Wight, Jason Perras and Johnny Widmer.

Ramon Baez trophy (Mid-Amateur) –
Colin Mackay and Trent Riggins.

Francis and Steele-Perkins (Senior)
– Tracy Moore and George Christie.

Higgs and Higgs (Super Senior) –
Robert Chilman and Tom Crawford.

George Teale trophy (Ladies) –
Samantha Widmer (Amateur champion), Siobhan Ribbins and Isabel Lawson.

Alternates: Paul Woodhouse (men)
and Emily Ribbins (ladies). The team manager is Bob Slatter.

Most of the team is familiar with
competing in the championships and will be looking to better last year’s
performance at the Provo
course in Turks and Caicos.

All have been in training twice a
week at the 18-hole North Sound Golf Club under the club’s director of golf and
national head coach Kevin Mumford. The team’s head coach for the second
straight year states he is confident this year.

“Ogiers’ sponsorship is a good help
to myself and the association,” Mumford said. “It’s great not having to worry
about that. As far as the team goes Bob brings a lot of guidance and passion.
I’m truly honoured to be coaching the team once again. It gives me incredible
self-satisfaction. As I told you last year it makes Cayman even more of a
second home for me. I’m looking forward to helping everyone.

“At this point I would like to
thank Mike Touchette, who helped out during training. He will be coaching the
junior national team heading to the Bahamas in August (the Caribbean
Amateur Junior Golf Championship takes place 3-8 August).”

Arguably the key figure from that
list who helped eliminate the team uniform cost was Mackay. The Ogiers partner
is quite familiar with the competition having played in it four times (on all
of those occasions his training partner and current men’s champion Joel Dodson
was also on the team). As Van Liere states Mackay will help Cayman to excel.

“I believe that Colin is the
driving force behind Ogier’s sponsorship, because of Colin’s commitment to the
golf association and the national golf team. We went through six qualifying
rounds and I feel that the 14 best players in Cayman are on our team and are
all committed to great golf, team work, and proudly representing their home
country of Cayman.

“I think we will see an improvement
in our standings from last year. We have 10 returning players and four new team
members, all whom have a real desire to play well in Barbados. We have Kevin Mumford
returning as coach and Bob Slatter joining us as team manager, their combined
enthusiasm and experience will inspire this year’s team. Preparations have been
more intense this year, as the event is being held one month earlier than
usual.”

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Dodson is a key part of the Cayman team.
Photo: Matthew Yates