Debut British triumph for Katherine Russell

Katherine Russell

Sussex golfer Katherine Russell survived a sudden death play-off to win the British senior championship at her first attempt at Hunstanton, on the Norfolk coast.

Katherine, from Royal Ashdown Forest, beat Ireland’s Pat Doran with a par four at the second extra hole – the 18th.

The players tied at the end of regulation play after both returned one-under 74 in the final round, which was played in very testing wet and windy weather. They finished on 234, nine over par for the three circuits of a tough course in generally tough conditions.

Katherine, 51, was making her debut in the over-50s championship. She is the Sussex senior and women's champion and also Sussex foursomes title-holder. Her home club, Royal Ashdown Forest, has no bunkers – and Katherine was in quite a few at Hunstanton, including the first hole of the play-off.

"I found Hunstanton's bunkers quite intimidating – but maybe because I am not used to them," she said with a laugh.

"Of course, I never expected to win. Last year the British women's stroke-play was played at Royal Ashdown Forest and I put myself under such pressure, thinking I just had to do well because I was a local player – and I just played terribly.

"So I came to Hunstanton with no expectations, no experience of playing in the event. I was staying with a bunch of girls and we had a good time … I treated it as a fun week, no pressure because nobody considered me a championship contender."

Image © Cal Carson Golf Agency

Leading final scores
Par 225 (3×75) CSS 79 78 76  Yardage: 6,021
234 Katherine Russell (Royal Ashdown Forest) 79 81 74, Pat Doran (Donabate) 81 79 74 (Russell bt Doran at second hole of sudden-death play-off).
235 Minna Kaarnalahti (Fin) 78 83 74
236 Sheena McElroy (Grange) 86 75 75, Christine Quinn (Hockley) 79 80 77, Jane Rees (Hendon) 80 79 77
237 Maria De Orueta (Spa) 79 79 79
238 Lindsey Shaw (Chevin) 78 82 78, Helen Jones (Royal Portrush) 79 78 81
239 Rocio Ruiz de Velasco (Spa) 76 80 83
240 Christine Watson (Beaconsfield) 77 84 79
242 Carol Wild (Notts) 83 80 79, Janet Melville (Sherwood Forest) 89 74 79, Rozalyn Adams (Addington Court Ladies) 75 86 81
243 Fiona De Vries (St Regulus) 86 78 79, Marion Kaufman (Ger) 82 81 80, Isabelle Dumont (Bel) 82 81 80, Pat West (Spalding) 80 82 81, Vicki Thomas (Carmarthen) 82 79 82
244 Jo Ashmore (Barnham Broom) 80 86 78, Marie Christine De Werra (Swi) 84 81 79, Christina Birke (Swe) 89 76 79, Cornelia Schmidt-Stuetzle (Ger) 83 81 80
 
Age group winners
50 to 54 years
Jane Rees (Hendon)
55 to 59 years
Christine Quinn (Hockley)
60 to 64 years
Christine Watson (Beaconsfield)
65 years and over
Mimmi Guiglielmone (Switzerland)

Full scores www.lgu.org