Supporting the NextGen Juniors in Derbyshire

  • Reading time:6 mins read
  • Post author:John Barker
  • Derbyshire County Golf
  • Post category:Junior Golf

Taskers Trophy funding in 2018 -2021 was used to support the County Junior Development Programme. An average of about 60 junior golfers per year have been able to access a structured programme of coaching and player support. The results have been impressive with an average handicap reduction of 27% over the last 3 years.

With some notable successes at Midland level, with the Under 18 Boys winning the Midland County Cup for the first time ever in 2019, the Girls County team emerged Scratch League Champions for the first time in 2019 and almost held on to it last year. Individually three of our lads have won Schools International caps for England, one was crowned Carris Trophy winner in 2020, we have had one boy selected for full England squad, and at least one boy and one girl annually selected for England Regional squads, and one girl has played for the Welsh Girls at the age of 13. We have also produced the Midland Youths winner at the age of 17, who went on to finish in the top 10 in the Brabazon in 2021 and won the Grand Final of the Faldo Series.

The 2021 Taskers Trophy Funding supports our County pathway, and benefits over 150 young golfers, boys and girls, who access a structured programme of support. From absolute beginners accessing our Futures Tour and NextGen Tour to elite players performing at the highest levels of junior golf.

They have the opportunity to access great coaching from PGA pros in the county and to participate in a range of events, from those targeting beginners without handicaps to those such as our County Championships. The importance cannot be overstated. It gives young golfers a flavour of competition, many for the first time, and also puts these young golfers on to a county pathway, that not only supports their development but also develops their interest in and love of the sport. The impact has been to see significant handicap reductions, and success at a county level with our Under 16s winning the Midland County Cup, and our Girls winning almost retaining the Scratch league. More importantly, however, it encourages the game to flourish from beginner to elite.

How we plan to use the 2021 funding in Derbyshire

Coaching – 50% About 60-70 young golfers will benefit, including over 20 girls.

There are 3 categories, ranging from ‘Participation‘ level, which targets boys and girls who are quite young (often under 12), and have been identified as having future potential through such as the Futures Tour.

Performance‘ level supports the development of those with a handicap of about 20 to 8. All are Under 16.

The top ‘elite‘ level supports the development of our strongest golfers, with single figures handicaps ranging from 8 down to scratch and beyond.

Developing the pathway – 50% About 80 youngsters will benefit, including another 20 girls. They will compete in a range of 9 hole competitions for beginners, called the Futures Tour for those without handicaps, and the NextGen Tour for those with high handicaps, which run throughout the County on Sunday afternoons in the summer, competing for an Order of Merit Trophy in their age groups (aged 8-13).

This funding will support the following county outcomes

Ambition – to strengthen the talent development pathway from club to county and national level The strategic priorities:

1. More players: Increasing the number of juniors who play golf regularly. The Futures Tour and NextGen Tour will target a number of different players – 80 and throughput of players – 270 for 2022.

2. High-Quality competitions – to run high-quality county competitions for beginners through to experienced junior golfers, beginning with the Futures Tour. Our evidence will be the numbers playing in it year on year and a player/parent survey at the end of the season.

3. Stronger County Junior teams: To identify and develop talented junior golfers, creating winning Derbyshire teams at all levels Handicap reductions for County golfers accessing the Coaching programme – a target of 30% year on year.

BOYS U18 – 8 x Players – 3 H’cap or better U16 – 10 Players – 6 H’cap or better U14 – 12 Players – 10 H’cap or better

GIRLS U18 – 3 x Players – 8 H’cap or better U16 – 6 x players – 12 H’cap or better U14 – 10 x players – 20 H’cap or better

Winning golfers have been continually met in the last few years, with success for our Under 18s and under 16s Boys and for our Girls Scratch and Handicap teams. Developing and maintaining a county player pathway. This goes from strength to strength with the success of the Futures Tour leading to the creation of a NextGen Tour for youngsters with high handicaps. This helps us to bridge the gap from starting out to playing full representative golf. Building and maintaining a sense of pride in representing the county – responses to our annual survey show that this is being addressed. Our Team Managers and Junior delegates nurture this and we believe it is the main reason for our County teams punching above their weight.

John Barker - Derbyshire County Golf

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