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Posted on Wednesday 24th Feb 2016

the 3R's

I’m often asked ‘what do the 3R’s stand for’? On giving the answer a disbelieving smile usually ensues. Back in the early 90’s a handful of retired members, luminaries such as Jack Morrison, Douglas Scott, Tom Chalmers, Stan Smith and David Black met and played golf on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in the afternoon. The group became known as the Mid-week Golfers. The demographic shift meant that the numbers soon grew to well over twenty with golfers such as Ian Fraser, Brian Conner, Jim Malloch, Alan Cleeton et al. joining it. Alan Cleeton soon felt the urge to rename the group with a title more befitting an eclectic mix of characters from which it is made. After careful reflection he settled for: Retired, Redundant or Retarded is the authoritative definition, and like all truisms it has stuck.

In those early days with increasing numbers it was agreed to formalise the draw for the preferred game of four-ball foursomes, but when the number of players is odd say 13 then an individual Stableford is played. The kitty, 50p per head, going to the winner with the highest score. With certain members regularly winning, a handicap adjustment was introduced. This required a record to be kept of scores and revised handicaps. Hence a record book was started in October 1994; this (known as the black book) also contains the rules.

Everything went well for a while until the summer of 1999 when the one stroke reduction rule was brought in to question because Bobby Brown returned a score of 50 points (some saw this as equivalent to a net 55). The one stroke rule was quickly revised and to this date is a sliding scale of up to 5 strokes for 50 points (that’ll teach newcomers not to get too big for their boots, I’m sure they thought).

The preferred game is played in teams of 3 and the occasional team of 4. The 2 best Stableford scores count towards the points total; the team with the most points wins the kitty. Teams of 4 are handicapped 7 points. This is calculated using a database which has now been running for the past 5 years.

With the passing of time some of our members have moved on and we annually play for the Memorial Stableford Trophy in memory of our absent friends.

From a small beginning several years ago, the group is still going strong and would welcome any newly retired or redundant members. Meeting the third requirement ‘retarded’ new members, with the help from established members, usually develop signs of this within the first couple of years, thereby becoming fully established.

Charlie Thomson

December 2013

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