Top field for Jeffers Sportsturf Dundalk Scratch Cup

At the launch of the Jeffers Sportsturf 2014 Dundalk Senior Scratch Cup. L-R: Fergal Harte (Dundalk GC), Clive Jeffers (Jeffers Sportsturf), Aaron Grant (Dundalk  GC – 2013 Winner), Leslie Walker (Dundalk GC Professional)

Rory McNamara is the favourite but Stephen Healy, Tiarnan McLarnon, James Fox and local body Aaron Grant and Caolan Rafferty are fancied to challenge when the 36-hole Jeffers Sportsturf sponsored Dundalk Senior Scratch Cup tees off on Sunday.

The event heralds the start of a busy couple of months on the amateur circuit with Louth playing host to the East and the Close, before the Amateur Championship comes to Ireland again for the first time since 1999.

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Thanks to sponsors Jeffers Sportsturf, the event has the largest one-day prize fund in Irish amateur golf not to mention a list of former winners that's a Who's Who of Irish golf.

Victory at Dundalk is certainly no impediment to futures success with 2001 winner Brian McElhinney going on to win the Amateur Championship, a feat perviously achieved by Michael Hoey, who won in Dundalk in 2000.

Ballyclare's Johnny Foster followed his 1998 win in Dundalk with victory at Lahinch in the “South” while last year’s runner-up and 2006 champion, Simon Ward, won the 2013 South of Ireland Championship before joining the paid ranks.

In 1995, Stackstown’s Pádraig Harrington went on to win the Irish Amateur Close and the Irish Amateur Open having laid the foundation for a great year by winning in Dundalk.

He is on record as saying hat but for a lucky break in the trees on the 18th, where he won by one shot, everything might have been so different.

Dundalk club professional, Leslie Walker, a long time friend, says: “Every time I see Padraig he asks me are those trees still on the 18th!”

Dundalk Senior Scratch Cup — Past winners

  • 2013 Aaron Grant Dundalk GC
  • 2012 Stephen Healy Claremorris GC
  • 2011 Ciaran Molloy Ardee GC
  • 2010 Rory Leonard Banbridge GC
  • 2009 James Fox Portmarnock GC
  • 2008 Derek Downie Sutton GC
  • 2007 Stephen Grant Birr GC
  • 2006 Simon Ward Co Louth GC
  • 2005 Michael McGeady North West GC
  • 2004 Des Morgan Mullingar GC
  • 200: Noel Fox (Portmarnock)
  • 2002 John McGinn (Greenore)
  • 2001 Michael McGeady (City of Derry)
  • 2000 Michael Hoey (Shandon Park)
  • 1999 Gary Cullen (Beaverstown)
  • 1998 John Foster (Ballyclare)
  • 1997 David Doggett (Co Louth)
  • 1996 Graeme Kennedy (Skerries)
  • 1995 Pádraig Harrington (Stackstown)
  • 1994 Colm Murphy (Clandeboye)
  • 1993 Ray Moore (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1992 David Gibson (Downpatrick)
  • 1991 Dan Coyle (Dundalk)
  • 1990 Pat Killeen (Claremorris)
  • 1989 Paul Bray (Hermitage)
  • 1988 Peter Rogers (Dundalk)
  • 1987 Pádraig Hogan (Elm Park)
  • 1986 Barry Reddan (Co Louth)
  • 1985 Frank Flynn (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1984 Paul Rayfus (Trim)
  • 1983: Eddie Condren (Greystones)
  • 1982 Frank Gannon (Co Louth)
  • 1981  Frank Flynn (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1980 John Carr (Sutton)
  • 1979 Ray Moore (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1978 Val Smyth (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1977 John Dickson (Hollywood)
  • 1976 Mick Morris (Portmarnock)
  • 1975 Adrian Morrow (Hermitage)
  • 1974 Rory McCormack (Warrenpoint)
  • 1973 Declan Branigan (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1972 Declan Branigan (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1971 M.J. Malone (Belvoir Park)
  • 1970 G.N. Fogarty (Royal Dublin)
  • 1969 Jimmy Clynch (Laytown & Bettystown)
  • 1968 Pat Mulcaire (Woodbrook)
  • 1967 B.P. Malone (Tullamore)
  • 1966 J.B. Carr (Sutton)
  • 1965 J.B. Carr (Sutton)
  • 1964 G.N. Fogarty (Royal Dublin)
  • 1963 David Sheahan (Grange)