March 2, 2024

■ Harley F. Palangchao

The first phase of the record-breaking 73rd Januarius Fil-Am Invitational Golf Tournament was a resounding success with more than 700 players in the seniors and regular divisions seeing action during practice rounds and tournament proper from Nov. 22 to 30.

The second phase of the tournament with more than 700 players kicked off on Dec. 2 with a practice round until Dec. 4. Tournament proper for the higher brackets of the regular division is set on Dec. 5 to 10.

The par-69 Camp John Hay Golf Club and the tricky par-61 Baguio Country Club hosted anew the biggest and longest-running amateur golf tournament in the Asia Pacific region.

The Fil-Am executive committee co-chaired by Anthony de Leon of BCC and Jude Eustaquio of CJHGC together with the secretariat led by Roanne Galicia did a great job in ensuring the tournament went smoothly, as players from all over the Philippines and faraway lands played a friendly competitive game for the pride and glory of their respective teams and their places of origins.

While the premier Fil and Am Championships were dominated by visiting teams, several teams from Baguio and Benguet were podium finishers.

There’s more.

A few Cordilleran golfers also emerged as individual scoring champions, or have landed in the top five scorers in their respective groups in the seniors and regular division.

The awarding ceremony at the BCC Cordillera Convention Hall on Nov. 30 turned even more memorable with several lucky players winning in the raffle  draws where high-end gadgets and equipment were given.

But the luckiest raffle winner was Ranie Carlos of Forest Hills who won a brand new Toyota Raize.

During the four-day action, the Fil-Am committee recorded the easiest and most difficult holes both at BCC and CJH.

The easiest hole at BCC is No. 7 with zero hole-in-one, 43 birdies, 376 pars, 443 bogeys, and 384 pick-ups while it was at No. 6 at CJH with one hole-in-one, 57 birdies, 515 pars, 408 bogeys, and 268 pick-ups.

The most difficult hole at BCC is No. 11 with zero eagle, 15 birdie, 119 pars, 316 pars, and 799 pick-up while it was at No. 5 at CJH with one eagle, 27 birdies, 264 pars, 381 bogeys, and 687 pick-ups. (Photos: Harley Palangchao and The Perfect Drive PH)