22nd July 2021 — Derby Grammar School has a long tradition of sports pupils going on to achieve excellent playing careers at University and beyond. These are usually found in the main sports of Rugby, Hockey and Cricket. However, due to their broad approach to sport, on occasion a pupil will progress through the school with an exceptional talent alongside these core sports.
Current Year 9 pupil, Adam, is one such exceptional young man. At the tender age of 14, the youngest age to qualify for such a prestigious role, Adam has been selected as a Young Ambassador for Derbyshire County Golf alongside peers ranging to 18.
Adam explains, “It is a great honour to have been chosen for this role. I cannot wait to be able to start to visit the Derbyshire Golf Clubs and encourage more juniors to take part in this fantastic sport. I hope to be able to demonstrate to them how much enjoyment I have from playing.”
Adam first started to play golf at the age of six, following in his father’s footsteps, being taken on regular occasion to Branston Golf & Country Club.
He is now a member of Burton on Trent Golf Club, where they have fostered his clear talents making him their current Junior Captain. Adam challenges himself further by being a member of Kedleston, Branston Golf & Country Club and Chevin Golf Club, honing his impressive skills further.
Many will appreciate the long-told story of recent lockdowns causing teenagers to become locked in their rooms, with little hope of pulling them outside for fresh air. However, this is not an issue Michaela Gentles, Adam’s mother, seems to struggle with.
She explains, “Despite the lockdown Adam has continued to practice daily, to keep in the swing in anticipation of the golf courses reopening. Adam practices daily in his practice net, and plays on the courses as often as possible – lockdowns permitting.”
As part of his role he will join a small group of Ambassadors, between the ages of 14 and 18, to work alongside England Golf, Derbyshire Golf & the Golf Foundation, to promote Junior Golf throughout the County.
To achieve his full potential and to get his handicap as low as possible, he also wants to continue to represent the County as an Ambassador and to continue to play in the County Teams.
Mrs Gentles continues, “It is his passion as a hobby but he would also like to see how far he could take it as a career, if not as a player within the golf industry.
“He has developed a new circle of friends from all over the county. They all get together as often as possible to play at each other’s courses. This is supported by the Derbyshire County Development Team.
“Last year Adam was due to represent the school in the County Schools competition, which was unfortunately cancelled due to the pandemic. Mr Whitworth, Head of Sport, has indicated that he would like Adam to take part this year, restrictions permitting. His Speech & Drama lessons and LAMDA qualifications from Mrs Simpson have assisted in his personal development and given him both the confidence and ability to present to his playing peers, their parents and the County organisers.”
Mr Whitworth, Head of Sport at Derby Grammar School, is extremely proud of Adam’s achievements, “Adam is a shining example of what is achievable when you commit to a programme of practice and match-play in any given sport. A competitive performance can be likened to the tip of an iceberg, with hours and hours of practice that often go unseen. Dedicating your time and energy to improving yourself will pay dividends in the long run. Nothing worthwhile having comes easy! We obviously look forward to hearing of Adam's successes whilst representing the School in both regional and national competitions.”
Adam’s dedication to the sport is evident, and his enthusiasm infectious. With such a determined young man as an ambassador, both Derbyshire County Golf and Derby Grammar school find themselves with an excellent torchbearer.