Preview: 6th Hornblower Memorial Senior August 19 – 20

Mike Arter, holds the 2018 Hornblower Senior Tournament trophy from the porch of historic Plymouth Country Club with this year's tournament scheduled August 19 - 20.

PLYMOUTH, Mass – Some of the best senior golfers from New England will assemble for the 6th edition of the Hornblower Memorial Senior Championship scheduled August 19-20 at historic Plymouth Country Club.

Since 2014 the Hornblower Senior Tournament has been a must-play tournament for players age 55 and over and have a current GHIN of 8.0 or lower.

“The goal of establishing the Senior Hornblower was to create an event for the many long-time players and supporters of the Hornblower who have reached an age where they can no longer compete with the younger “flat belly” golfers,” said Tournament chairman Mike Ellis. “Now in our 6th year the field is the strongest yet. Our event continues to gain momentum and the committee could not be happier with the progress we have made in making this one of the feature senior events in New England.”

Notable Senior golf tournaments include the Massachusetts Senior Fourball, the Senior Amateur, and the Super Senior Amateur. Many of the players also compete in the United States Senior Championship. This year’s field includes 2019 Massachusetts Fourball Champions Kevin Carey and Joe Walker and 2019 Massachusetts Fourball Super Senior Champs Carter and Jon Fasick.

“When I was working full time, I always checked the website early to make sure of the dates so I could save the dates,” said Kevin Carey, of Dennis, a two-time Mass Golfer of the Year, who considers the Hornblower and Hornblower Senior two of his favorite golf tournaments of the year. “I would have been a member of Plymouth Country Club years ago if there wasn’t the small matter of a canal and crowded bridge in the way. Just ask anyone who knows me; the Hornblower Pro-Am is unequivocally my favorite single round of golf of the year. Te Senior Hornblower is an absolute must-play event for seniors every summer.”

There may be a few members of the Dennis Courses who would have been happy if Carey had joined Plymouth, since he just won his 40th Club Championship in Dennis; 20 at the Pines and 20 at the Highlands.

“It’s always a pleasure to return to Plymouth Country Club for the Senior Hornblower,” said two-time champion Mike Arter (2015, 2018), who will be joined by former champions Kevin Carey (2014), Jack Kearney (2016), and Pat Scanlon (2017) for this year’s event. “The course is always in top shape and provides a true test. I believe the tournament has the best senior field in Massachusetts, which is why I am proud to have won the Hornblower twice.”

Plymouth Country Club, located in “America’s Hometown” about six miles south of Plymouth Rock, is a Donald Ross-designed par 69 course with a USGA rating of 71.1 and slope of 132.

Some observers might think the Donald Ross-designed par 69 course is set up easier for the seniors, but that is not the case. Although most players no longer launch 300 plus yard drives, all other aspects of their games are still top notch. Chairman Ellis explains that “the winning scores for the Senior Hornblower are almost always just about as low as the regular Hornblower. These guys are older and very good!”

“For me this is also one of my favorite events and I have the opportunity to see some old friends and have the chance to watch some great golf.,” said course Superintendent Ben Whiting. “Yes, the course will be set the same as the regular Hornblower. As far as conditions, we are going through one tough stretch of weather with the temps and humidity very high, but the players can expect to see a course that they are used to seeing; firm and fast.”

Plymouth Country Club will again be well-represented by members Don Foberg, Paul LaCamera, Mike Ryan, Joe DiMarzio, Rob Fontaine, Fred Smith, and Gary Young. Foberg, who recently won the Plymouth Club Championship, plays in many state level events.

One ever-present dynamic at the Hornblower Senior is the extraordinarily friendly rapport among the participants. Although every player is completely focused during his rounds, the post-golf interaction is refreshing and entertaining. It has become a tradition for former champion Jack Kearney to corral 10 or 20 of his “closest golf buddies” after Round 1 to engage in a “heated” putting contest that lasts until dark – complete with good-natured gibberish. Others linger around the clubhouse watching the leaderboard, catching up with friends, and lamenting putts that got away.

“Plymouth Country Club is a premier golf course that is hosting more and more MGA and USGA type events, but the Hornblower Senior is definitely one of our favorites,” said Director of Golf Operations Mike Roy. “The participants are courteous and knowledgeable and return year after year because they like it. Many are among the most recognized names in amateur golf. The staff and membership look forward to this event and do our best to make the players feel welcome.”

“We are looking forward to hosting the 6th Annual Senior Hornblower Memorial on August 19 – 20,” said Plymouth Country Club President Tom Mayer. “Plymouth is fortunate to have these amazing senior golfers from New England and beyond play here each year. Spectators are encouraged and welcome (free of charge) to walk the fairways of this historic Donald Ross golf course and watch some of the best senior players around. It’s a nice way to spend a summer afternoon!”

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