Thursday, June 28, 2007
Who needs a sand bunker , when a cow pat will do?
Developed in Holland in 1999 by a Dutch farmer, called Peter Weenink, "Farmers' Golf" started as a bit of fun when Weenink, a cheesmaker maker to trade, had the brainwave to attach an old clog to a long stick and thwack a ball around. At first he used the clog club to practice his swing in the cow field but soon learned the orthodox golf ball was too small to use in bumpy farmland with cow present, so he took a bigger ball. By the time he had put together a 10 hole course, with cow dung and puddles posing deliberate challenges, rather than the velvety turf of a golf course. The game now called clog club became popular with his friends because many if them were infuriated by the prohibitive prices and elitism of traditional golf clubs. In the Netherlands, golfers need to pass an exam to be allowed onto a course. New Farmers' Golf courses are springing up almost every week and the game is expected to attract up to half a million players next year. The clog club has proved particularly popular in the Netherlands, where clogs are a well-loved national symbol, but the sport has now spread to neighbouring Belgium and Germany. The Belgians have even won an international Farmers' Golf title, much to chagrin of the Dutch.