Clarke & Keelan’s Solheim Story

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Simon Keelan and Roy Clarke ready to go at the Solheim Cup on Friday

The Solheim Cup is over for another two years, and while it was a great weekend for ladies golf with an exciting win for Team Europe, there was a Cork link with two of the team caddies coming from Douglas.  Roy Clarke and Simon Keelan are long time tour caddies on the LPGA and LET tours.  The pair  played junior golf together on several Mahon and Douglas teams, and while they were back together in Gleneagles, they were on opposing sides.  Clarke was on the bag for US star Jessica Korda while Keelan was working with Europe’s Caroline Masson.  Not only were the pair on opposing teams, in a strange coincidence their golfers faced up against each other in the opening foursomes on Friday, and again in the singles on Sunday.  They were both winners of sorts, Korda won the two head to head matches and Europe won the overall title, giving both Keelan and Clarke something from the showpiece event.  Keelan is back caddying after a spell working in the exclusive Hogs Head resort in Waterville, and the Douglas man was delighted that Masson was selected for the pinnacle team event in Ladies Golf.  “I’m not sure where to start, I came over with the team five weeks ago when the picks were Continue reading

Trackman Roy still on Course

Roy Clarke Trackman_1By any measure, Roy Clarke has had an interesting few years working in golf. Working for Trackman, the leading shot analysis system is a pretty cool job but it’s not even the most interesting job he’s had. Roy spent several years caddying on the LPGA tour, helping some of the biggest stars in the top ladies tour in the world. He’s now working with Trackman, the leading analysis tool used by professionals worldwide. Working off-course in the golf industry is limited to a small number of people and Roy covers all of Ireland and northern England in his current role. Like many golfers, it all started for Roy when he was young and he got his first taste for the game. “I started playing at 12, the folks bought me a full set of clubs from lifestyle sports worth €100 and a membership to Mahon Golf Club as a surprise one Christmas” said Roy. I couldn’t just look at them so I begged my mother to bring me down after the dinner. I was the only one out on the course. I’m sure it was closed, it was lashing, and I didn’t even know the rules. I played 36 holes a day once the summer hit, and I was golfing at a very good level by 18, playing off scratch.” It was clear that he was almost obsessive about the sport. A summer trip to the US would lead to the first stage of his golfing career. “I just had a love affair with golf and always knew it would be the industry I would work in” he continued. “The jigs and the reels would lead me to Bighorn Golf Club, Palm Springs for a Continue reading

Munoz on top in Spain, with Cork’s Keelan on the bag

simon-keelan-sept-2016_1Azahara Munoz leads the Costa Del Sol Open after the first 36 holes, an she has Corkman Simon Keelan on the bag with her.  Keelan has spent much of the summer caddying on the Ladies European Tour.  Last week the pair were in action in the Evian Championship in Paris but it was a disappointing week as Munoz finished down the field.  This week she bounced back on home soil and led the field after a second round 66.  Keelan was seen on Sky Sports looking Continue reading