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“This proves that a retailer and an airport authority can work together successfully.” Those were the words of Gebr Heinemann Co-Owner Gunnar Heinemann (pictured centre) after he and Fraport Head of Airline Relations Martin Turek (left) won the annual Moodie International Superstars Honorary Invitation Tournament – affectionately known as The MIS-HIT – yesterday.
A field of 24 industry colleagues took part in the 2009 MIS-HIT – now in its eighth year. Glorious sunshine and fantastic friendship were the order of the day, with the pleasant weather and nice conditions at Cannes Mandelieu Golf Club making for some sensational scoring.
Gunnar and Martin scored a combined 47 stableford points in the best-ball format, heading a valiant performance by Scorpio Distributors’ Bruce McGuire and Marshall Arts International’s Peter Marshall by just one stroke.
In a major new innovation this year, former champion Sunil Tuli (pictured below) introduced the ‘Blue Jacket’ to be worn by the individual stableford winner.
This was won by a proud Martin Turek who capped his MIS-HIT debut with a superb winning score of 42 points.
Tuli, though bitterly disappointed not to have won his fourth MIS-HIT, did triumph in the hotly contested Fashionista Award, in honour of his Tweety Bird -yellow lycra golf shirt and tight navy blue pants that would have left little to the imagination had anyone been looking.
The anti-fashionista Award for worst-dressed player went to Jonathan Holland of Jonathan Holland & Associates, who is renowned for considering himself to be travel retail’s own version of Cary Grant. A fashion grant would have been more appropriate such was the appalling state of the Holland footwear as his golf shoe disintegrated on the second hole, leaving the sole flapping like a fish at Billingsgate market and forcing his playing partner – Dubai Duty Free Managing Director Colm McLoughlin – to have to lend him a shoelace to keep things together.
Shortest drive of the day and also the ‘Valiant Tryer’ Award went to Rakhita Jayawardena (below) of King Power Traveler and Centaur Travel Retail. “This man has the swing of a Sri Lankan elephant’s trunk,” the hosts announced as Rakhita was introduced on the first tee. “Must be a very small elephant,” said an onlooker, after Rakhita’s Colombo curio of a swing (using a 7 iron for safety) sent the ball sailing all of 25 metres.
Earlier, Rakhita was also asked to hit the traditional opening drive – unbeknown to him an exploding golf ball provided by Premier Portfolio. “Where did it go?” he cried after the ball split in two and a pink ticker tape went sailing down the fairway – further in fact than the real ball he hit moments later.
[The Moodie Report Deputy Publisher Dermot Davitt welcomes guests to the 2009 MIS-HIT]
We’ll bring you more pictures of the 2009 MIS-HIT later. But first we have to head back to the links. The annual Gebr Heinemann and Hugo Boss tournament is about to start.