This past weekend the Quantum Driving Winter Shootout reached its climax as the top 16 hitters from across the Qualifiers headed to Woodmead to take each other on in the most explosive form of golf. Quantum Driving is the Long driving game in South Africa and their Winter Shootout was arguably their most exciting offering yet. Four qualifying events left us with the 16 massive hitters to fight it out for glory.
The format on the night would be head-to-head knockouts on a ranking basis from a round of 16 down to a final winner on the night. With Jason Cook and Morne Wolmarans both flirting with the 400m in qualifiers it was all set for a titanic battle at the Pro Shop in Woodmead.
Round of 16
The Round of 16 produced a mammoth 384m hit by Jason Cook in his match against Calvin Cornell, whose 355m would have been enough to win four of the other matches. Morne Wolmarans was also living up to his early billing as favourite on the night by producing a round one 397m. Rudi Potgieter and Berno Korff had to get the rules out as their drives were so similar but it was Rudi who won by a margin of just 3m, arguably the biggest surprise of the night considering Berno’s qualifying distance of 367m. All in the top 5 from the Round of 16 were:
- Morne Womarans 397m
- Jason Cook 384m
- Calvin Coehlo 374m
- Gerhard Coetzee 373m
- Donovan Snyman 371m
The top 5 featured four of the top 5 seeds and set up a humdinger in the Quarters as Jason Cook would take on Calvin Coehlo.
Donovan Snyman made sure of his place in the final four when he rocked home a 364m bomb to beat Dewald Keys by 12m and was quickly joined in the final four by Gerhard Coetzee who dismissed Rudi Potgieter with 371m. Morne Wolmarans produced what was arguably the drive of the night as he smashed home a 398m bomb, much to the bitter disappointment of opponent Gerhard Henning. You would have found few bookies not paying out already for a Wolmarans victory. The final quarter final was the most anticipated and Jason Cook and Calvin Coelho played up to the script outstandingly. The two traded punches like prized boxers and ultimately it was Cook who shaded it by 374-367.
Cook was once again called on to bring his big hits in the Semi-Final and his 379m best drive was enough to deny Donovan Snyman a place in the final to take on Wolmarans surely. But the second semi-final produced a cliffhanger as neither Coetzee or Wolmarans managed to hit their swing at 100%. Somehow the man flirting with 400m all night was only able to produce a 353 and although Coetzee was at his best in this semi-final he still produced enough to secure a 360-353 victory.
And so to the final. Two of the longest serving members of Quantum Driving and two of its finest champions met face-to-face in the final of the Quantum Driving Winter Shootout. Cook would be the slight favourite having landed maximum scores of 384, 374 and 379 to get to the final and underline his consistency. Coetzee had produced a good 373 and 371 in the earlier rounds before only managing 360 in the semi-final. But once again Gerhard produced the goods when it mattered most. Cook landed another 375m hit which would have been enough to win most matches on the night, but somehow Coetzee saved his best for last producing a sublime 377m drive to secure the title by just 2m!
Thoughts from Coetzee
“I think I got lucky at times, but that’s what sport is about! My aim for the night was to make the semi-finals and anything was possible, but I wasn’t considering the chance of winning. It was an ideal situation that worked perfectly for me and I’m grateful for the opportunity. Special thanks to all our sponsors, the supporters and the competitors for an incredible series!”
After the success of the Winter Shootout, the Quantum Driving league heads back outdoors with the SA Championships taking place. The Qualifiers will take place in August, September and October at the Els Club at Copperleaf before the final takes place on the 25 November at the same venue. It promises to be a series of massive hits and explosive drives. Have you got the distance?
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