Concierge service from John Dooley

John Dooley, Drive Golf Performance June 2017There aren’t too many PGA Professionals that focus on a single area of golf, but while most specialise around teaching or playing or retailing, John Dooley has added another aspect.  The Riverstown based pro has a busy teaching base in Drive Golf Performance but he also manages a bespoke golf tour business.  After spending nearly a decade at Doonbeg, John saw a gap in the market.  The experiences in Doonbeg led to John setting up Concierge Golf, a business which he describes as “combining coaching golf and managing golf tours into Ireland & Scotland.”  The managing is the key part as John can help with everything from transport to dining.  “Concierge Golf Ireland offers to manage golf holidays to Ireland & Scotland to golfers that would like more than just a booked golf tour” explained John.  “To that point, we offer to book and manage tee times, various transporting types, standards of accommodation, where to go and what to do, along with any type of entertainment and setting up the dining experiences.  There is a lot of time spent working on our customer’s golf tours, the workload per golf tour is quite significant mainly due to the details required by the customers.  However, I really become energized for customers when they comment on how much they have enjoyed their Irish or Continue reading

Cork win for Dooley & Ryan, Munster PGA

munster-pga-cork-feb-2017Local knowledge seemed to give two local golfers the edge in Cork today as Padraig Dooley (Drive Golf Performance) and David Ryan (Cahir Park) won the Munster PGA event.  Over 20 golfers started out this morning and while there was a cold wind blowing through Little Island, the course was in great condition and surprisingly dry given the heavy rainfall over the weekend.  Both golfers trained under Peter Hickey and they returned today to triumph over a field of talented professionals.  Both golfers played very steady golf, Ryan was an early starter and had birdies on the 6th, 11th & 12th.  The only blemish came on the 17th, but the two under par 70 was enough to get into the winners circle.  It was a similar story for Dooley, he also birdied the 6th and the 12th.  A bogey on the 14th brought him back to -1 but a birdie on the 17th saw him sign for a 70 and take a share of Continue reading

Padraig Drives forward with Edel

edel-putters2016 brought lots of news from the major equipment companies.  Nike pulled out of club design while having two of the biggest paid stars on their books, and TaylorMade was put up for sale by Adidas at a time when they dominated the Driver market.  It was also the year that a few of the smaller and newer manufacturers made a breakthrough.  Edel wedges and putters were one of those breakthrough brands and the custom made clubs are now available in Cork.  Glanmire based PGA Professional Padraig Dooley has been known for his interest in clubs, and the mechanics and technology behind the clubs.  Although the Edel brand made a big breakthrough this year, Padraig has been a fitter for the bespoke brand for well over a year and has helped over a dozen golfers to lower their scores with the unique fitting process.  “I came across Edel Continue reading

Davey Barry into Top Ten at Irish PGA

Davey Barry (Douglas)

Davey Barry (Douglas)

Davey Barry shot a one under par 71 at Moyvalley today in the third round of the Irish PGA Championship.  Barry moved up the leaderboard on day three and now he’s in 10th place.  The Douglas assistant professional started brightly with a birdie on the first but a bogey on the 5th brought him back to level par for the day.  A bogey on the 16th was book-ended by birdies on the 12th and 17th which meant that Barry signed for a 71.  Cian McNamara slumped to a 77 for this third round, a double bogey on the last was a tough way to finish for the Monkstown Professional  who had recovered from a poor start.  McNamara is now in 13th place.  David Higgins is the best placed Munster Pro, he had a 71 today and is tied for 8th place.  The lead is still held by Colm Moriarty from Drive Golf Performance.  Moriarty’s 70 was one of the low rounds of the day and he has a one stroke lead  over Damien McGrane and holder Niall Kearney.

David Ryan jumped up 14 places on the leaderboard thanks to his 73 today, but Ciaran McKenna dropped out of contention after a disappointing round.  Tomorrow will see the final round of Continue reading

Super 65 from Dooley, PGA Southern Championship Pro-Am

Padraig Dooley

Padraig Dooley

Padraig Dooley finished ahead of the field today at the PGA Southern Championship Pro-Am, thanks to a seven under par 65.  Dooley has been in fine form this year, but this is his first win on the Irish Region tour.  The Riverstown based Professional finished one shot ahead of the field.

There was a real Cork Golf Club feel to the top of the leaderboard with the top three all having strong links to the Little Island club.  David Ryan was right behind Dooley on -6 and David Higgins was third with a 68.    Monkstown’s Cian McNamara finished in the top 20, and it was good to see Castlemartyr’s Brady Sherwood back in action on the course.

Today’s golfers will be joined by David Barry, Conor Coyne and Ciaran McKenna for tomorrow’s first round at Powerscourt.  Higgins is one of the form golfers entering the competition, he won two events last week bringing his season total to seven wins – including the prestigious PGA Pros Championship in England last month.  The Southern Championship is a 36 hole tournament, it has a prize fund in excess of €13,000 and will conclude on Tuesday.

Live scoring will be available from this link from around 12pm.

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Dooley & Higgins Qualify for PGA Professional Championship

DAvid Higgins PGA CShip

David Higgins pictures at the Titleist & FootJoy PGA Professional Championship qualifer (Picture: Patrick Bolger/Getty)

Padraig Dooley and David Higgins are both headed for The Oxfordshire in July to take part in the Titleist & FootJoy PGA Professional Championship.  The Irish qualifier took place today in Carton House and both qualified for the second successive year.  Dooley finished in a tie for fourth place on +1, but Waterville’s Higgins shot an amazing nine under 63 to finish five shots ahead of the field.


David Higgins produced a dominant display, he carded an impressive nine under par round of 63 at the Co Kildare venue to win by an impressive five shots ahead of Clontarf Golf Club’s Eamonn Brady.  Higgins made five birdies on the front nine holes – with three in successive holes – to book a return to the £78,000 showpiece final being held The Oxfordshire course from July 26-29.

Results: PGA Professional Championship – Irish Qualifier

Top 10 Finish for Dooley & McNamara at PGA Southern Championship

Drive’s Padraig Dooley and Monkstown’s Cian McNamara both carded second round 70’s to finish in top ten at Powerscourt.  Both players opened with two over par 72’s yesterday and they went around in four shots less today to climb up the leaderboard.

PGA Southern Championship Final Standings

David Higgins (Waterville) carded a five under par round of 67 to win.  Higgins finished the 36-hole event on nine under par, one shot ahead of overnight leader, Richard Kilpatrick (Banbridge) with Mark O’Sullivan (Piltown Driving Range) a shot further back.  “I played nicely today. Continue reading

Good Recoveries from Dooley & McNamara

Padraig Dooley and Cian McNamara bounced back today from disappointing opening rounds at the PGA National Championship in Burnham & Berrow GC in England.  Both carded poor first rounds, Dooley sot an 80 while McNamara recorded an 84.  Fresh from his appearance in Royal County Down, McNamara bounced back on Wednesday with a 72, while Dooley signed for a 74.  Both lie around halfway down the leaderboard but unfortunately they both missed the cut for the final two rounds as they were outside the top 50.

Waterville’s David Higgins leads the Irish charge, rounds of 74 and 72 have him tied for 6th place.  Liam Bowler (Wexford GC) was the only other Irish golfer to make the cut.

Golf Rules Always to the Fore

Golf Rules Always to the Fore

By Niall O’Shea

Rory McIlroy hit the headlines over the weekend over his reaction to an incident regarding the rules of golf.  He suffered a two shot penalty for an incorrect drop, a penalty that ultimately had a big bearing on his second place finish.  McIlroy was penalised for standing on the boundary of an obstruction, in this case a spectator crossing point on the fairway.  Local PGA professional Padraig Dooley however had a different take and defended the rules of the game, many of which have endured over time.

Padraig from Drive Golf Performance has taken the PGA Advanced Rules and Refereeing course is well placed to give an opinion on the rules of golf.  He explained: “The requirement to take full relief from an immovable obstruction or abnormal ground conditions is far from stupid.  Both Rules 24 & 25 allow for relief from the conditions if it interferes with not only the ball but the stance and area of intended swing as well.  If there wasn’t a requirement to take full relief, the player by not taking full relief could drop and if not liking the lie could re-drop as many times as required to get a good lie as the player would always be entitled to relief.  This isn’t really a stupid rule.”  McIlroy had commented that “There are a lot of stupid rules in golf and this is one of them”.  While Dooley spends most of his time teaching, his is acutely aware of the importance of the rules and the influence they have in every game “all the rules of golf are well thought out and have a lot of history and cases behind them, none can be called stupid”.

While many golfers think that the Rules of Golf are complex, the Glanimre based teaching professional doesn’t agree; “A very good working knowledge of the rules doesn’t take too long to grasp.  There are 34 rules, it might take 15 minutes to get reacquainted with each of them.  An hour each evening in the winter months will mean it just takes over a week to get a great deal of the knowledge that will help every player.”  It should also be noted that the Rules of Golf booklet can be downloaded for free from the R&A website.

Working from their own extensive facility in Riverstown, Padraig and his brother John have built a large customer base in under two years.  In addition to lessons, also offer junior lessons, custom fitting and golf fitness programmes.  Padraig is a qualified junior golf and golf fitness coach, both qualifications coming from the renouned Titleist Performance Institute.  Padraig’s final bit of advice is “Why not grab a rule book while watching the TV and during the ad breaks, read a rule, you never know when it might save you a stroke or two.”