On course to success
TITLE contender Adam Gemmell has an added reason to feel confident going into this weekend's annual City of Ipswich Open golf tournament at Leichhardt.
Apart from being a three-time winner with local knowledge of the revamped course, Gemmell enters the 36-hole amateur championship in form.
One of Ipswich's leading amateur golfers is feeling positive about his prospects having won last weekend's Nambour Open.
"I had a bit of a hit-out last weekend on the North Coast and won that," he said of his most recent success.
Gailes golfer James Haining won last year's City of Ipswich Open after a thrilling playoff .
Haining and Headland's David Rattray were tied on 150, six over par after 36 holes.
The extra-hole decider was at the first open on the new course designed by Aussie golfer great Wayne Grady.
Having won in 2006, 2007 and 2009, Gemmell believes this weekend's entrants will need to size up the course quickly to have any chance of claiming the title on Sunday.
"You want to be even par or better for the two days," he said.
"They've got the course back in pretty good nick at the moment.
"It's still got a little bit to go but it's getting better. It's moving in the right direction."
Gemmell has played the open for more than a decade.
He said the early group of holes were most challenging, especially in breezy conditions.
"The course has got some teeth when the wind blows," the former state player said.
"You can make a score out there if it's good conditions.
"The first five holes are a really good tough stretch of holes. If you can make it through there, the rest of the round gets easier."
Gemmell said the well-designed par three holes were his favourites.
A field of 170 is expected this weekend, including some of Queensland's finest amateur golfers.
"We've got quite a few from metropolitan and Gold Coast areas," Ipswich Golf Club professional James Craperi said.
"They're playing for nearly $3500 worth of prizes."
Among the up and coming Ipswich players to watch are youngsters Josh Miles, Harrison Boland and Bart Cafe.
Gemmell rates Miles a player of the future.
"He's got a really good short game," Gemmell said.
This weekend's event is played in four grades as well as senior and junior divisions.
What: City of Ipswich Open
Where: Ipswich Golf Club, Leichhardt
When: Saturday and Sunday (tee-off from 6.30am both days).
Competitors: A field of 170 players, including top amateurs from around south east Queensland.