Posts Tagged ‘Zoe Allen’

Michelle and Zoe’s big Kenyan golf adventure

November 19, 2018

A chance meeting at last January’s PGA Show in Orlando set teaching professional Zoe Allen on course for a ‘growing the game’ expedition to Kenya.
Last month the 30-year-old, in partnership with US based LPGA professional, Michelle Holmes, spent two-weeks in Nairobi and isn’t ruling out a return visit.
“Michelle has already jokingly suggested that we could do a trip like this every year,” said Zoe.
“It definitely opened our eyes a bit. Great as it is to be running my own golf school, it was nice to do something for the wider game of golf, to give something back.”
The impetus for the visit came from a brief discussion Zoe and Michelle had with Kenyan based US Kids’s Golf coach, Emanuel Kasio, at the PGA Show.
“He simply said ‘have you ever thought of coming over’?” added Lurgan Golf Club based Zoe, at U.S. Kids Top 50 Golf Coach.
“We decided it would be a great opportunity to experience something different, a new coaching experience. We took some time out of our schedules and away from our businesses.

“This was self-funded, there was no payment. We just wanted to see if we could do something positive.”

The pair also travelled out laden down with donated equipment and gifts.
“When people heard I was going out, a few bits and bobs started to arrive in. I hadn’t given it any thought, I hadn’t asked for any donations at that stage,” said Zoe.
“So I thought, ‘let’s see what else we can bring out’ and fired off an email for any old junior gear. I ended up taking out four extra travel golf bags of equipment to leave out in Kenya.”

Kasio has created a golf programme that covers both state-funded and private schools and clubs. The coaching work he does with his more wealthy participants allows him to offer free coaching in some of the less affluent areas of the city.
“To be honest, we had our best experiences in the state-run schools,” continued Zoe.
“We spent some time at the Great Rift Valley Golf Resort. It was beautiful, a fantastic facility but that’s the type of environment we are used to.
“Some of the state schools don’t have regular electricity supplies. There are 60 kids in a class and the classrooms aren’t big but the children really enjoyed the coaching sessions.
“At one of the schools we hosted a skills challenge and it was treated as a full school sports day, all the other children who didn’t take part directly were allowed to come out and watch. Given the chance, we’d have spent all our time there.”


Virginia calling for Lurgan’s Zoe Allen

May 15, 2016
Zoe Allen

Zoe Allen

Lurgan assistant PGA professional, Zoe Allen, is set to tee up a busy year with a tilt at the Galvin Green PGA Assistants’ Championship qualifier at County Meath GC.
Allen, 27, will take to the fairways of the Trim venue on May 17 with an eye firmly set on the championship final at Little Aston later this summer.
The event, which carries a £32,000 prize fund, is the leading event for golf professionals undertaking their PGA training in Great Britain and Ireland.
But for Allen it is just the start of what promises to be a very exciting year.
As an up-and-coming coach, she has secured a placement to work at the Michelle Holmes School of Golf in Virginia for three weeks later this summer.
Allen has been impressing off the course, working with more than 140 junior golfers at her County Armagh base.
“Coaching is something that I’ve really fallen in love with,” Allen enthused.
“That inevitably impacts on your playing time as when you enjoy doing something, it’s hard to stop doing it to go away and practise.

“I started out coaching beginners but since then I’ve gone on to work with a whole range of abilities, but junior coaching has really been my focus above everything else.

“That’s definitely where I see myself going in the future, and who knows I could end up abroad longer term.
“I guess that’s the great thing about this summer – it’ll give me an idea of what that would be like. I’m just keeping my eyes open to all the different opportunities that might open up to me at the moment.”
Back to the initial task at hand, and, as the only woman taking part in the qualifier, Allen is confident she can compete with the boys in a bid to secure her place in the final.
“The boys are always welcoming when you get to the course, so I don’t mind being the only girl,” she smiled.
“I’ve been practising as much as I can recently and I do feel that my game is in good shape. It’s involved a lot of early mornings and I often get to the club for about half seven so that I can get out there while it’s quiet.
“I’ve got a couple of events coming up over the next few weeks so I’m looking forward to getting out there and seeing how they go.”
Other players competing in the qualifier at Co Meath include: Matthew Cochrane (Dunmurry), Andy Hogan (Edmondstown), Richard Kilpatrick (Banbridge), Ciaran McKenna (Mallow), Tim Rice (Limerick) and Graham Sweeney (Balbriggan).

Lurgan GC opens new academy with focus on junior development

October 28, 2014
Lurgan Golf Club's new driving range

Lurgan Golf Club’s new driving range

Progressive Lurgan Golf Club is bucking the trend and embracing junior golfers in a bid to secure the long-term future of the club.
Five years after taking what club captain Barry Campbell called huge a ‘leap in the dark’, the Co Armagh venue has officially opened a state-of-the-art 12 bay driving range and teaching academy.
The facility which includes a chipping green, short game area and two practice bunkers has been constructed with financial support from the Department of Social Development via the neighbourhood renewal scheme.
That funding, some £350,000, comes with it certain stipulations and a responsibility to grow the game which the club is embracing.
“Our side of the deal is to promote the game of golf particularly amongst the youth of the area, via schools, clubs and voluntary organisations that are not normally associated with the game,” added Campbell.
“We take this obligation very seriously and in Professional Peter Hanna and assistant Zoe Allen we have two people who are totally committed to this process.
“In Lurgan, we are committed to growing the game through our young people. Thanks to our major champions there is a resurgence of interest in the game particularly amongst young people.

“The future of golf depends on the youth and clubs which fail to recognise this fact do so at their peril. This club, with the help of the superb facilities we now have, intend to tap into that potential.”

Lurgan GC has a growing reputation for developing junior members and it’s starting to pay dividends, particularly in girls golf with Niamh Ward, Niamh McSherry and Annabel Wilson all making their mark at international level. The boys are also showing promise, winning the Ulster section of the Fred Daly Trophy this year.20141024_141459
With the development of this new academy, professional Peter Hanna is hoping to extend the reach of the club into the wider community.
“The club did take a bit of a chance in 2009 when they voted to buy the land (adjacent to the ninth tee). It was mostly forest and was regularly used for anti-social behaviour. The club bought it, and then cleared it at some cost, approximately £500,000, which the members are still paying for via an annual levy,” said Peter.
“The plan was to have an area to hit a few balls. It was open to the elements and was going to be pretty basic. At that stage we became aware that there may be some funding available and that process was driven through by the club officials with two former captains at the helm, Paddy Meehan and Billy Bateman.
“The process was stalled somewhat by some planning appeals but those were eventually overcome and what we have now is really very good. We have the best mats we could buy, perfect for hitting irons off. They are probably better than hitting off grass to be honest. They are soft and really encourage you to strike the ball and then mat.
“The range balls are also high quality Srixion two-piece, they react very similar to a normal ball rather than the bars of soap people sometimes encounter at ranges.”
The venue has been selected as one of the GUI Ulster branch development centres but that is only the start for Peter.
“We are branching out beyond just own our own members into the surrounding area offering beginners classes and group sessions and hopefully eventually getting into the schools as well,” said Peter.
“The facility is open to the public and anyone is welcome to come and use it. Opening times are normally 9am to 9pm and tokens can be purchased in the pro-shop or upstairs in the bar.”

Carty claims Ulster Women’s Championship

April 18, 2013
Jessica Carty (left), winner of the Hughes Insurance Ulster Women's Championship with Violet McBride, winner of the Teddy Morrison Trophy

Jessica Carty (left), winner of the Hughes Insurance Ulster Women’s Championship with Violet McBride, winner of the Teddy Morrison Trophy

JESSICA Carty made full use of ‘home’ advantage to the win the Ulster Women’s Championship at a wet and windy Belvoir Park GC.
The 18-year-old student held off the challenge from Lurgan’s Niamh McSherry to claim her first ‘senior’ title by 4&3.
“It was a tough week with Belvoir playing very long so I think a wee bit of local knowledge was important,” said the Irish international.
Carty’s home club is actually Holywood GC, famous as the breeding ground for one Rory McIlroy, but she also retains a membership at Belvoir.
With a small field, less than 30 entrants, Carty, who won the Irish Girls’ Championship last year, entered the tournament as one of the favourites alongside Louise Coffey (Malone), Laura Grant (Lisburn) and experienced international Lucy Simpson (Massereene).
Having qualified in third place, she beat Zoe Allen (Lurgan), Niamh Ward (Lurgan) and then Chloe Weir (Shandon Park) on the 19th in the semi-finals to book her place in the final against McSherry.
“The matches against Niamh and Chloe were tough. I didn’t play that well against Chloe in the semi-final but I just hung in to finally beat her,” added Jessica who will take up a golf scholarship at the University of Denver in the autumn.
“In the final I turned it around and played some of my best golf of the week. I think I was two under when the match finished.”

Jessica Carty (Holywood) bt Niamh McSherry (Lurgan) 4&3
Niamh McSherry (Lurgan) bt Laura Grant (Lisburn) 1up
Jessica Carty (Holywood) bt Chloe Weir (Shandon Park) at 19th
Niamh McSherry (Lurgan) bt Louise Coffey (Malone) 3&2
Laura Grant (Lisburn) bt Violet McBride (Belvoir Park) 6&5
Jessica Carty (Holywood) bt Niamh Ward (Lurgan) 1 up
Chloe Weir (Shandon Park) bt Lucy Simpson (Masseerene) 5&4
Louise Coffey (Malone) bt Pauline Bailie (Belvoir Park) 6&5
Niamh McSherry (Lurgan) bt Kelsey Coey (Clandeboye) 4&3
Laura Grant (Lisburn) bt Cliodhna McCarthy (Stackstown) 4&2
Violet McBride (Belvoir Park) bt Victoria Bradshaw (Bangor) 3&2
Jessica Carty (Holywood) bt Zoe Allen (Lurgan) 3&1
Niamh Ward (lurgan) bt Judithe Allen (Ballyclare) 4&3
Chloe Weir (Shandon Park) bt Victoria Craig (Clandeboye) 5&3
Lucy Simpson (Masseerene) bt Marilyn Henderson (Royal Belfast) 7&6
154 Louise Coffey (Malone) 81 73
156 Lucy Simpson (Masserene) 79 77
158 Jessica Carty (Holywood) 81 77
161 Victoria Bradshaw (Bangor) 82 79
165 Laura Grant (Lisburn) 83 82
169 Niamh Ward (Lurgan) 87 82
170 Chloe Weir (Shandon Park) 90 80
171 Niamh McSherry (Lurgan) 89 82
172 Kelsey Coey (Clandeboye) 85 87
175 Victoria Craig (Clandeboye) 89 86
176 Judithe Allen (Ballyclare) 86 90
177 Cliodhna McCarthy (Stackstown) 89 88 Violet McBride (Belvoir Park) 87 90
182 Zoe Allen (Lurgan) 90 92
184 Marilyn Henderson (Royal Belfast) 94 90
186 Pauline Bailie (Belvoir Park)93 93
Missed cut
186 Victoria Alexander (Holywood) 88 98
187 Anita McCaw (RCD Ladies) 97 90
190 Dasha Kovalenko (Rossmore) 99 91 Danielle Storey (Holywood) 91 99
191 Brooke Hopley (Clandeboye) 92 99
195 Dawn Scarborough (Temple) 101 94 Fionnuala McGrady (Dunmurry) 97 98