Have you ever finished a round of mini golf – most likely undertaken as part of a floundering family holiday – only to look down at your scorecard and think, “you know what? I’m pretty great at this”?
Well if you’ve long been quietly confident of your ability to navigate a golf ball around various whimsical obstacles, then you may be excited to hear there is an actual World Crazy Golf Championships – with a £1000 (€1180) cash prize for the winner.
The annual tournament takes place each summer in the English seaside town of Hastings, with golfers battling it out for the prestigious trophy on the pristine felt greens of the Hasting Adventure Golf course, which runs alongside the town’s pretty shingle beach. Would-be challengers can expect to face their fair share of bumps, ramps and chutes as they navigate the 18-hole course, as well as obstacles like lighthouses, pyramids, and, mini golfing staple, the treacherous revolving windmill.
The 2019 event drew the most entrants – 110 – in the tournaments 17-year history, with Marc Chapman, who also triumphed at the 2018 iteration, finishing first with a score of 235. The event this year is making an extra effort to attract novices of the game, rather than seasoned pros (yes, it seems there are genuinely ‘seasoned mini golf pros’…), with the return of a Junior Event, launched in 2019, that’s open to 8-14 year-olds, as well as the return of the Novice Event, for those who’ve never played at the tournament before.
In a quote on the course’s website, twice-runner up Sean Homer says, "Hastings remains the spiritual home of all things mini golf-related and the World Crazy Golf Championship has been at the forefront of the game in the UK for fifteen years.” Ahead of the 2020 edition, Homer adds, “I think it’s fantastic that the event this year is again focusing on what has always made this event so special – a fun, exciting, inclusive and entertaining spectacle for the young, old and everyone in between.”
If you think you’ve got the balls to take home the grand prize, head down to Hastings for the 2020 tournament that runs from 5-7 June, with registration required via the official website.
However, Hastings is by no means the only place to get your mini golf fix – check out some of our favourite – and most wonderfully weird – crazy golf courses from around the world.