Hello dear Members and Friends,

I hope that, wherever you are in the World, you all safe and well and are coping with this dreadful virus in the best possible way. Hopefully some of the vaccines being developed will be approved soon and we can finally beat this thing and return to a more normal way of life both here on the beautiful Algarve and wherever we may travel.

It has been a difficult time for all of us and, whilst it was not always easy to keep calm and keep a smile on your face, we have just had to make the best of it.

To be honest, when I agreed to be your Captain for 2020, I had a completely different idea of how my year would be, which I am sure is true of the plans any of us had for this very strange year.
However, like all of you, we have tried to make the best of the situation. After a total lockdown here that seemed to go on for much longer than it actually did we were finally allowed to return to the course and play golf.
In order to comply with the Covid regulations we started with friendly competitions without paying any entry fee, that obviously meant that there was no prize giving, no twos, and no banter on the terrace after golf as, due to short time working by GSA staff, the bar only able to open from 9am to 4pm. However, I approached Alexandra and I asked her to open for longer on the competition days which she agreed to do. So we were allowed to sit together with the new rules of social distance in groups of up to six people. This was a big improvement and felt like the beginning of our emergence to more normal times.
Two weeks later we were allowed to go into the golf shop, pay our entry fees and have prize giving on the terrace, and a bit later even the twos were allowed. So, we have all got used to the rules around playing golf with the remaining Covid restrictions and feel that we are being sensible whilst staying safe and the competitions are working more or less normally now.

At the beginning of August GSA organised the annual Pepe Gancedo Competition in honour of the designer of our golf course. GSA used this as a test event to see if it is possible to have a golf competition followed by a sit down meal in the restaurant.
I am pleased to say that the event was a complete success as things worked perfectly with everyone having a good meal with good distancing between tables, each of which accommodated four people.
I am pleased that we are able to plan the next big events (all under the assumption that the virus, and therefore the restrictions, are kept under control here in Portugal).

My Captains day will take place on Saturday 12th September with two tee start times from the 1st and 10th holes.

After a good day of Golf we will be able to sit down for a meal together (whilst following the distancing rules) for a few drinks and snacks. At 6.30pm there will be a buffet meal which will be served by GSA staff, simply point to the items you would like and the staff member will place it on your plate, please don’t try to serve yourself. There will also be a bit of background music but unfortunately dancing is not allowed which is a shame but I am sure you all understand.

The Members day will be held on 16th of September in a similar way.

For the moment the Autumn Festival will take place. My latest information from GSA is that they will wait until nearer the event to confirm but, assuming no increase in cases, we should be able to enjoy a lovely festival.

My Captain’s Away trip is still on my diary as planned. I will go to Rompido in October to confirm all the arrangements and I hope they can tell me at this time how it will all work. I will confirm all the arrangements with you as soon as possible.

This is all my news for the moment from our beautiful Golf course. The weather in the Algarve is excellent, not too hot, always with a nice breeze, the main thing is that we feel very safe in this part of the world.

Please stay healthy and safe and hopefully we will see you all soon back on PDF.

Have a lovely summer wherever you are.

Your Captain Brian

About Giles Fox