Greetings all and welcome to the 8th Annual Kelly Gang Shootout
Rich River 27 & 28 July 2013
A Champions Dinner will be held in the clubhouse bistro of the
Corowa Golf Club on Friday evening.
The 2-ball ambrose rounds will commence at 11:53am Saturday on The West Course . Details of the pairings and tee times will be announced at the team meeting.
The 4-ball ambrose round will commence at 9:00am Sunday on The Old Course. Details of the pairings and tee times will be announced on Saturday evening.
The organisers of The Kelly Gang Shootout, Bushranger Golf, would like to take this opportunity to thank:
Denise, Steve, Bridget, Bec and all the team at Heathcote Winery
for their support of Bushranger Golf in producing the very popular Bushranger Shiraz.
All the team at bwired for their expertise and support in developing and maintaining the Bushranger Golf website.
Sally Pitt from Social Golf Australia. She knows why.
Richard Fellner from Inside Golf for his help with promotion, publicity and marketing of Bushranger Golf.
Sam and the team at The Golf Clearance Outlet for their ongoing support of Bushranger Golf.
Roger Brown from Focal Point Garden Design for creating the mighty Glenrowan Perpetual Trophy and for all his ongoing assistance with the annual champion’s trophies.
Carly and all the team at Corowa Golf Club.
All the Members of Bushranger Golf; past, present and future.
The Format: Teams of four playing two-ball ambrose best-ball on Saturday and four-ball ambrose best-ball on Sunday.
The Rules: Since slow play is a potential problem for our gangs, these rules are designed to encourage play in the right spirit and at the right pace. Teams play their chosen best ball on each shot and may place their ball half a club length (about 50cms) from where the chosen ball lies, no nearer the hole. Balls must be placed in the same cut as the chosen ball. In the interests of fast play from tee to green, teams are NOT required to mark with a tee and precisely measure from the chosen ball as they play each shot. Team members can play in any order on a shot. Putting: Once on the green, Bushrangers should mark near the chosen best ball so each team member plays from near enough to the exact same position.
Handicapping: Each person will be assigned a handicap by the handicapper based on official handicaps and information supplied by the Bushrangers. The handicapper will be governed by a commitment to rewarding good play according to a player’s ability. Team handicaps for the ambrose groupings are calculated from the individual marks.
Playoffs: In the event of a tie, a sudden-death playoff will be conducted. Teams play together as a foursome (taking alternate strokes playing one ball). The order is continuous and carries over from one hole to the next until the playoff is decided.
Nearest-the-Pin & Longest Drive: Will be contested on both days and, in the interests of team gloating and solidarity, any player who wins a LD or NTP wins prizes and glory for his entire team.
The Rodeo Rule: This is minimum drives for each team member and will be enforced. Each team’s individual rodeo requirements will appear on their scorecard.
Rounds One & Two: 2-ball ambrose starting at 11:50am on Saturday. Competitors need to be at the course at least half an hour before hit off. All competitors have golf carts on both days.
Round Three: 4-ball ambrose from 9:00am on Sunday. Competitors need to be at the course by 8:00am.
The Presentation: After golf on Sunday, we will collate the scores and have the presentation as quickly as possible. The venue for the presentation will be back in the comfort of the motel.
The History of The Kelly Gang Shootout at Glenrowan
The Kelly Gang arrived in Glenrowan on 27 June 1880 and took about 70 hostages at the Glenrowan Inn. They planned to derail a train of police coming for them and while they waited for the train, they kept the hostages entertained by breaking out the turps and firing up a party that was a rollicking good time. The party lasted for two days. Meanwhile the police avoided the derailment and laid siege to the pub.
The gang members, Ned Kelly, Dan Kelly, Steve Hart and Joe Byrne, donned their now-famous helmets and armour (weighing about 44 kg), and fought a gun battle with the police. Before dawn on Monday June 28, Ned Kelly left the rear of the inn in his armour and circled behind the police. As the dawn broke, Ned cast an eerie figure marching out of the morning fog in his armour and overcoat, firing his revolvers. Police bullets bounced off his armour and it was not until the police shot at his legs that he slowed. He eventually collapsed and was captured beside a large fallen gum tree. He was near death and not expected to survive.
The rest of the gang died in the pub, probably from gun shot wounds, although the police bravely made sure by torching the building and burning Anne Jones’ pub to the ground. The police suffered only one minor injury: the senior officer, Superintendent Francis Hare, copped a scratch to his wrist, then fled the battle and was later suspended for his cowardice. Police bullets struck several of the hostages during the siege, at least two fatally. Ned lived and left on the train they tried to derail.
The Form Guide
The Glenrowan Hacks – Steve Hart, Joe Byrne and Dan Kelly all lost their lives at the siege in Glenrowan (June 26–28, 1880) that Ned had hoped would be the catalyst for a new republic. The myth of Ned grew as he somehow survived the ordeal having sustained enough gunshot wounds to bring down a horse. It was the first and last time they wore their iconic armour. In honour of this, the defending champions will play the KGS every year as The Glenrowan Hacks.
Matthew Thomas (T-bag) – Just about owns this event with an extraordinary record of four wins and a third place from his five starts including the last three in a row. Shooting for four on the trot here and may have trouble shaking the peloton as they take turns attacking him with plenty of medicine shoved into his claw each evening at the bar. Has won every time with a different team but returns here with all the defending champions together which may be his undoing. Up against it.
John Smith (007) – Beneath the casual and relaxed demeanour of this charming dilettante of the fairways lurks a hideous monster that even this correspondent may struggle to portrait. He appears a tranquil and self-actualised individual with nary a care and a balanced view of golf, life and the universe. Alas it is all a sham. A double-agent, he is an agitator for the forces of pure evil that will stop at nothing to dismantle all that is peaceful, joyous and loving in the universe. A true monster.
Jeremy Dray (Jezza) – The easy-going gent and dry wit will enjoy defending his title. He always looks the part at the KGS with his dazzling Bushman furry countenance and sparkling swing. Alas he came in here last year chock full of confidence with some great form under his belt but the same cannot be said this year. He has struggled at his last few starts on The SGA Tour and the magic of 2012 must seem a long time ago. Looks a little fragile over this distance and may already be thinking about putting the cue in the rack and setting himself for 2014.
Andrew Berry (Strawb) – Was the cat who got the cream last year when he rocked up, had a few beers, hit a few shots and was totally surprised to be holding the trophy at the end. Got an armchair ride to his first major win but may need to be the glue that binds the defending champions together. May lack the experience to carry his team home.
Form: The defending champs come in here trying to achieve what no-one has ever done and win the KGS back-to-back. It may all hinge on T-bag’s capacity to weather the storm of well-wishers throughout the weekend who will be urging him on and offering well-intentioned advice and assistance on how to do the unthinkable. A long shot.
The Stringybark Creek Freaks – The infamous shootout between police and the Kelly Gang at Stringybark Creek took place on October 26, 1878. The Gang surprised the police at their camp and the ensuing gun battle was the spark that ignited the Kelly outbreak.
Ian Crotty (Crocko) – One of the great characters of the Bushranger Golf milieu, this razor sharp wit has been to as many BRG Major Championships as anyone here. A certified food nut and culinary artisan, he enjoys indulging the senses and matching great wines and tucker. Sometimes happy to simply match great wines with other great wines and leave the grub out of it altogether. To the delight of many, the drunker he becomes, the funnier he doesn’t know he gets. Super value.
Sebastian Shand (Bastros) – This self-motivated raconteur is one of the pillars of the mighty Bushranger Cup and is one of just a handful of outlaws to have played all 10 Cups. Has a much thinner record at the KGS having played it only once before at the inaugural Shootout in 2006. A most fertile and enthusiastic procreator, this high-skilled self-medicating random-shot-generator is all but semi-retired from big time tournament golf but will give his all for his legions of adoring fans.
Richard Fellner (Quigs) – Had a golfing epiphany earlier this year. Having recovered from a bad knee injury, he acquired a new driver and putter that saw him piping the ball off the tee and holing putts from everywhere. It seemed he had found The Secret and playing golf was all too easy. He dismantled the field in the CCC in May to add another BRG Major to his bulging trophy case and seemed set to carry all before him this year. Last week his game crumpled like the fragile house of cards it is and he is now destined to return to his familiar golfing mediocrity.
Mick Van Raay (Kingo) – This BRG golf weekend aficionado is bursting with anticipation after a long layoff and several outrageous interruptions to his golfing lifestyle. Lately he has been wearing the grooves out of Hendrix’s Cross Town Traffic and by all reports he is none too pleased. Is back here after a long lay off from BRG Major Championship golf and relishing a return to the big stage and the chance to catch up with some old compadres and feel the fresh Corowa breeze whistling past his ball as he smashes some air as hard as any man ever did. A big hitter for the big occasion is capable of anything.
Form: An experienced, virile and potent outfit that has the bloodlines, form, team balance and competitive drive to take this event by the horns and give it a massive shake. Could be right in it at the finish.
The Beechworth Boys – Ned was gaoled as a teenager for receiving a stolen horse. In January 1873, he was transferred from Pentridge to Beechworth Prison where he spent the next year of his youth learning from hardened criminals how he might become an upstanding member of the community.
Neil Hocking (Hocks) – Has a profound predilection to pontification and preoccupation to the point procrastination. Saves his best for when it matters least with blistering rounds playing socially with pals but then struggles to put it all together on the big stage. Has played a few great rounds in SGA Tour events but has question marks over his big tournament temperament with just one major win to his name. Has the character, the skill, the temperament and the will to get the job done so will almost certainly contend again here this week. A huge chance.
Matthew Pitt (Pw Jones) – This big match performer has a massive record at the KGS but has never been able to jag a win. The only person to have played every Kelly Gang Shootout, he has notched up the remarkable record of five second place finishes and no wins. Clearly understands what is required with consistent high finishes and four wins in the Bushranger Cup. May simply need the right crew around him and has done well here with a gang of KGS legends in his corner.
Gavan Doran (The Rose) – Loves this event as much or more than anyone here and has done more than most to add to the myth, mystery, legend and enigma of the KGS. His team-mates may be hoping he takes a more low-key approach to the après golf activities this week but they will certainly end up disappointed. Can do it all both on and off the golf course and will probably repeat his winning performance of 2009 when he carried his team to a famous KGS win. Feels right at home in this part of the world with an eleutherian connection to the Rutherglen Region that could make him an unstoppable force of nature this week.
Nick Sutherland (The Hypno-freak) – Reckons he can hypnotise chooks to obey he depraved commands and is threatening to convince some of the more fancied contenders here to run around Corowa Golf Club like crazy chickens. If you have had a few frothies one evening and you find yourself transfixed in front of a swinging shiny talisman with someone asking you to gaze into their crystal balls, start snapping your fingers like crazy and hope like hell you wake up in time.
Form: This crew of golfing megastars is the most remarkable super-group ever assembled in the history of the KGS. The sum of the parts are greater and the individual components AND vice-versa. Unbeatable.
The Frosty Beveridges – Ned Kelly was born in Beveridge, at the foot of Fraser’s Hill, 40 kms north of Melbourne. It was his first home town and is well known for being at its best when the temperatures are a little on the chilly side.
Rob Lugton (Luggo) – This is his sixth consecutive KGS and he has compiled a very impressive record and a KGS title from his glittering 2010 when he swept all before him and cleaned up a swag of BRG Major Championships. After a spell battling his game, he recently found a little form on the SGA Tour. An iceman on the course, he is focused on the job at hand and can be very difficult to dislodge when he gets in the zone. Loves a good red (or two) and can be vulnerable between rounds.
Chris Stimmel (Stimms) – Has dipped his toe in the pool of BRG Major Championships a few times and been completely engulfed by the tsunami of golfing festivities that BRG Major Championships generate. Has a form line that is up and down like a yo-yo which is not altogether bad as he is just as likely to bomb out or hit a hot streak and tear the event to shreds. Has paid his dues on the BRG Championship roster and may be primed to sweep all before him and lead his team to glory.
Peter Rowe (Ro-ro-yaboat) – This bloke is a home town hero but is not too flash on the road. He loves hitting the highway and sampling great courses in far-flung exotic locations but for some reason he only ever lights up the leader board at his home track at Centenary Park. Has been known to dismantle the course at times in his club comps but in the BRG & SGA events he has played from Portsea to Pattaya, he has consistently under-delivered over a long period. May require blinkers.
Graeme Silvester (Gra Gra) – A groovy cat with a relaxed and easy-going exterior does not give any hint of the ferocious competitor lurking beneath the surface. Has made a name for himself on the SGA Tour in the past year with some solid form. Led the 2013 SGA International going into the final round but was not able to close it out on the last day when grouped with a loud-mouthed and heckling Pw Jones. Has plenty to recommend his chances and plays more comp golf than most of the shabby participants here this week so expect a very strong showing.
Form: This mixed bag of golfing skill, wits, courage and temperament might not attract too much attention in the betting ring, but they may just have the perfect combination of craziness and bravado to pull this thing off. So to speak. Don’t put it past them to orchestrate a classic highway robbery here and steal the title from some of the shorter-priced gangs favoured by the bookies. Sure to give their backers great value.
The Benalla Burglars – As the major town closest to Ned Kelly's home, Benalla was the epicentre of Kelly's bushranging days and was the police headquarters for the Kelly Gang manhunt. As a lad, Ned famously gave three troopers a hiding one day in the main street.
Mark Henderson (Hendo) – He may look like a big, fat, balding, overweight, unkempt, trailer-park, loud mouth, trash-talking, uncivilised, self-medicating, Collingwood supporting slob, but don’t let his carefully cultivated facade deceive you. This fitness fanatic has serious question marks over his commitment to the BRG holy trinity of beer, golf and….er….beer. Is rumoured to have engaged the services of a personal trainer and may spend the entire weekend eating like a rabbit, popping off for cardio sessions, doing a little Tai-Bo, monitoring his BMI, STDs and KPIs and generally making his comrades fell like slobs.
Shane Lawlor (Jacques Cousteau) – Making his Bushranger Golf Major Championship debut and has already demonstrated he may have what it takes to make a big splash in Corowa. Last week while practicing in a hurricane, his driver slipped from his grasp and flew into a nearby dam. To the delight of his playing partners he took of his shoes, jacket, pants, shirt and most of the rest of what he had on and conducted a professional and successful salvage operation for the missing driver. Has since fitted the offending club with a leg rope so don’t expect to see him skinny dipping in the Murray for it over the weekend.
Pete Russell (Rusty) – Totally relaxed and altogether unflappable athletic freak of nature who can master any ball game he turns his mind to. Has paid his dues with three previous starts in the KGS as well as fronting for a WBC and the inaugural CCC at Barnbougle Dunes. Has not yet threatened the engraver but this big-hitting behemoth looks to be very close to opening his major Championship account. An adroit conversationalist and well travelled gentleman of the world, his presence here this week adds a touch of class to an already quality field.
Leon Doyle (Leondo) – This freewheeling man about town has a reputation as somewhat of a renaissance man. A man of letters and a compassionate community project worker, he possesses athletic gifts that are the envy of many. His striking physical presence and enigmatic personality make him popular with all who meet him. An all-round outstanding specimen of humanity who is rumoured to not have the slightest clue about golf so may struggle to make an impression here.
Form: This mob appears short of a gallop and will be lucky to make it out of the gates, let alone cross the finish line. Making up the numbers.
The Euroa Removalists – Euroa was the scene of the Kelly Gang’s first bank hold-up in 1878. They were most gentlemanly and polite throughout, as they calmly made off with £2000 in cash and gold.
Chris Hall (The Don) – A passionate Essendon supporter, was totally stoked to have acquired The Don as his Bushranger moniker. Was slightly less enthusiastic when he learned the name was given not for his questionable footy preferences but for his capacity to rack up Bradman-like numbers on the golf course. Like his namesake, he is an accumulator of scores – he simply accepts the scores that the games has to offer with consummate ease. Once he is set and gets his eye in, he is not satisfied with a small tally and is capable of compiling huge totals.
Brendan Davis (Brendo) – This humble champion has a reputation as quite a pants man about town and is one of the more confused and bewildering individuals coming to Corowa this week. A huge fan of both the Collingwood and Justin Bieber, his eclectic taste will no doubt be the source of much anthropological investigation as the weekend unfolds. It is not clear yet whether he can back up his wild off-course antics with any sort of game although in the sage words of Rick Springfield, the point is probably mute. After all, any bloke with the nuts to wear a Bieber badge on his magpie duffle coat has got something special going on and must be either feared or respected or both.
Leo Ryan (Lone Wolf) – This purveyor of manly pursuits is a true Hemmingway man’s man who enjoys watching power lifting, Greco-roman wrestling and the like. Has developed a reputation for his unique powers of logic that would have Plato scratching his head and needing a bit more time in the cave to figure out what the heck is going on. In the Allegory of the Cave dialogue, Plato begins by having Socrates describe a scenario in which what people in a cave assume to be the real is in fact an illusion. To understand this fully, go now and ask Leo what it means.
Micheal McCombe (Cocktail) – This fertile procreator is making his first start in a BRG Major Championship and is rumoured to have some professional experience that will hold him in good stead over the weekend that may make him very popular with his team mates and some of the other competitors looking to pick up a few tips from a pro. Yes, he is a professional bar manager, so should know a fair bit about the booze. Can’t golf to save his life and will need to mix a few stiff drinks for his team mates to calm their nerves after each days play.
Form: Although they are not the sharpest tools in the shed, the KGS is a big shed with plenty of tools. Not short of confidence, they will be backing themselves to be a massive show here even if nobody else is.
The Corowa Borrowers – Corowa was used by the Kellys to 'trade' horses and cattle they had ‘acquired’. In early 1879 the gang was seen back in the region when they crossed the Murray to escape the Victorian Police. Ned knew the river crossings as he had worked at Fairfield Vineyard, danced at Forty’s Pub in Wahgunyah and drank in Corowa.
Paul Gray (Paulo) – The raucous unit is the closest thing to a human cartoon character that exists. A merchant of fun, he is up for a good time for a long time and is happy to take everyone along with him for the ride. Expect the totally unpredictable when he is around and starting to find his range – both on an off the golf course. He always goes in hard and when he hits form and he can explode in the most unpredictable ways. A complete maverick, he may dominate or implode.
Frank Reynolds (Ole’ Blue Eyes) – Takes a low-key approach to his golf having clearly decided that it is strategically unwise to intimidate his opponents with anything too brilliant on the golf course lest it inspires them to great deeds. Has been known to break into song after a few slurps of grape juice and can be convinced of his striking resemblance to his namesake Sinatra. Expect to see him necking a bottle late in the evening, tuning some dame and spreading the news about how he did it his way when he flew her to the moon. What a gas.
Wayne Ball (Ballo) – A man of very few words and a great many vices. Adds just a wee dram of class to an otherwise shabby field of drongos. Sashays his way around the fairways like a man who knows it is time to do some hard-core relaxing, he is sure to get straight down to work as soon as he hits town. Corowa may never be the same. Is the low marker here this week and covered himself in glory by placing second at his debut KGS in 2010 so must be considered a excellent chance to casually saunter his way to the top of the podium on Sunday arvo.
Kerry Ball (Kerro) – Making his first start in a field of this quality and, like many before him, may be completely overawed at this huge step up in class. With glittering stars and legends of Bushranger Golf all around him, he may be so caught up star gazing and chasing autographs that he loses focus on the job at hand. Expect to see him come flying out of the gates and then struggle the longer the journey goes as he realises the sheer scope of the challenge before him. Is rumoured to enjoy a red so may require some self-medication early to settle himself down.
Form: Impossible to draw a line through the form of this rag-tag gang of wildcards. They could just as easily rip this field apart or disappear into oblivion. Worth considering for trifectas to add some value.
The Jerilderie Gents – The Kelly Gang popped by Jerilderie in 1879, held up the local bank, jagged a couple of thousand pounds, penned a feisty letter and wandered over to the Telegraph Office to chop down a few telegraph poles.
Darren Nelson (Dazzler) – Has made a massive reputation for himself on The SGA Tour over the last couple of years as a quality unit and has now taken it upon himself to parlay that good form into some action on the BRG major Championship roster. Made a great start in his debut at the CCC earlier this year and looks the goods to perform well at Corowa. A ferociously positive unit intent on have a great time for a long time, he is always good company on the golf course. A champion.
David Parisi (Shafter) – This relaxed and easy-going golf nut places a priority on having a good time on the golf course, but is also a huge chance here this week. Can give the pill an almighty wallop and when he finds his tempo, has demonstrated a proclivity for tearing golf courses to shreds. A hardened competitor with mountains of experience on golf trips all around south east Australia, he will know this course and his game and will surly have his team well positioned on Sunday arvo.
Russell Esposito (Rabbit) – Takes a low key approach to big tournament golf and likes to fly under the radar and the rabbit-proof fence before bobbing up in the most unlikely places. A delightful companion on and off the golf course, he knows how to golf his ball and has found a few patches of form this year that suggests he might be primed for a big showing here this week. Definitely one to watch.
Garry Mason (Animal) – Is not called Animal for nothing as he is known as a complete monster who is altogether unpredictable to both friend and foe alike. He is capable of the most sublime feats of creative beauty, artistic performance and technical brilliance on the golf course which he can very quickly follow with the most outrageous examples of depraved ignominy imaginable. And that is just his character – when he picks up a golf club it gets even worse. Other than all that he is a top bloke and running into some solid form with a great round at his last start on the SGA Tour. Played well in his debut at the CCC in May so may be set for a huge weekend in Corowa.
Form: This patchwork quilt of golfing skill and temperament might not attract much attention in the betting ring, but they may just have the perfect combination of complimentary assets to pull off a highway robbery here and steal the title from some of the more fancied gangs.