A busy three weeks will start this weekend at the Griffith Golf Club with the Norm Savik Red Gum Plate Memorial getting underway on Sunday with the qualifying round.
It was an event founded 49 years ago in an attempted to build numbers over the hotter part of the year according to Griffith Golf Club manager Wayne Moat.
“Norm Saxvik who owned the timber mill out at Darlington Point was on the board at the time, and he saw that numbers were quiet during the December and January period,” he said.
“He invented this event to try and get more members to compete during the hotter and quieter months and it sort of snowballed from there.
“We have a Calcutta for it now and that what makes this event really prestigious because everyone wants to come out and buy themselves in the Calcutta and that has helped to generate more interest.”
The competition is played in a pairs format after qualifying with 32 pairs fighting it out over the next month to take home the coveted Red Gum Plate.
Moat said while the competition had run with one or two vacancies over the last few years he was confident there would be a full field when the competition gets underway.
“You get 32 pairs so that is 64 players and we have always had more than enough, but in the last couple of years we have had one or two vacancies because not quite enough numbers qualified,” he said.
“Golf numbers have been a bit down in recent years, so we haven't always been getting the full field of 32.”
“A lot of people are time poor now with kids and other commitments. I'm pretty confident we will get 30 pairs if not the whole 32.
“People like to talk about playing in it, but it comes down to committing every weekend assuming they keep winning.”
The winner of just the Calcutta can walk away with a prize not to be ignored.
‘First prize would be over $1200 most of the time if not $1500 depending on how many people come to the Calcutta,” he said.
“It is a pretty prestigious event for the males anyway, and they all want to take part in it.”
The Plate gets underway on Sunday with qualifying with the final on March 4.