Hi everyone,

I am recent college graduate hailing from Cork City. I have just started an internship here in the Marketing and Sales Department at Fota Island Resort Hotels Ireland and I am delighted with my experience so far and am looking forward to the next six months. I have been appointed to the Golf side of things as I have spent a great portion of my summers caddying in Waterville Golf Links, Co. Kerry .

This has been an invaluable insight to the golfing world and I have been lucky enough to caddy for people from all over the world and accompanied house hold names such as Dan Marino and Ken Doherty and pros Tiger Woods, Stuart Appleby and Mark O’Meara. One incident I recall took place during a round with Tiger Woods when he ended up in one of the bunkers on the right side of the 14th fair way. On his third attempted to escape the trap, a member of the four ball , who will remain anonymous, reminded the world number one at the time how ‘’ tis like digging spuds Tiger!’’. The suggestion was greeted with a look of confusion.

My first experience of Fota Island Golf Club Cork was in 2001 when my Father was invited to play in the pro-am of the Murphy’s Irish Open. Colin Montgomerie went on to win the Open however to my delight the pro in my fathers four ball was the legendary Seve Ballesteros. It was a great day and I remember being the envy of my friends who were gathered around the 18th green looking to cop a golf ball off some of the big names playing that day. I recently returned to Fota Island Resort on New Years Eve for a wedding of close friends, John Burgoyne and Barbra Farrell. The wedding party departed the Honan Chapel in University College Cork shortly after lunch and were greeted by a champagne reception in the Clubhouse at Fota Island Golf Club. The Clubhouse, complemented by grand surroundings, was the perfect location for the event. We were seated for dinner at the 5 o’clock mark after enjoying an array of finger food and beverages. After the speeches and other formalities a four course meal was served. There was a fine choice on hand; however I opted for a fish pate appetizer, mushroom soup, a fillet steak and a selection of ice cream to finish off a five star course. The celebrations of a perfect day stretched well into the night and early hours. I wish John and Barbra many years of happiness together. Fota Island Resort Wedding Hotel Cork is hosting a Wedding Showcase on the 26th of February and all interested parties are welcome. If you don’t have time to register online, don’t stress you are still more then welcome on the day.

Looking at the Clubhouse calendar I am excited to see a long list of upcoming events. One stands out in particular – the PGA Europro Tour, the Audi Cork Irish Masters, which Fota Island Golf Club will host for the second year running at the beginning of July. The competition attracts big name sponsors such as Sky Sports and 888.com. Last years event was won by Paul Reed of the Bristol and Clifton Golf Club who went around in 70, 67 and 68 over the three days of competition and claimed £10,000 in prize money. Reed admitted he was ‘stunned to have won his first ever PGA EuroPro Tour event’ – only two years after contemplating quitting golf giving us all encouragement to stick with it!

February sees the return of Resort Open Four ball which takes place every Wednesday throughout the spring starting on the 17th of February. The Resort Juvenile Open kicks off the following day, 18th of February, while the Resort Senior Open begins on the last Monday of January. The Senior Scratch Cup starts on Monday the 19th of March with a 1st prize of €500. (Open to golfers with a handicap of 5 or under and aged 55+). Another event that might be of interest to readers is the Callaway Custom Fitting and Demo Day. This takes place of the 30th of March. The first Friday of April sees the commencing of the Resort Open Singles. Open week this year starts on Monday the 13th of August and it commences with the Senior Fourball, followed by the Ladies Fourball on the Tuesday. The Thursday and Friday of Open Week see the Singles Vpar and Stableford competitions. All and all it looks like an exciting year for Fota Island Golf Club. I am looking forward to seeing how every thing unfolds and keeping everyone updated with my weekly blogs!