Vic proves age is no barrier

GOLF: The older you get, the better you become.That may not seem logical, especially if you are past your 70th birthday, but Vic Phillips is proving an exception.


THE older you get, the better you become.

That may not seem logical, especially if you are past your 70th birthday, but Vic Phillips is proving an exception.

Vic didn't take golf up until 20 years ago, but he has continued to improve over the years and in the last six years has brought his handicap down by eight shots.

"It's proved that as I've got older, I've got better," said Vic who has been a member at St Clement's ever since he took up the game.

Playing as often as he can – up to four times a week during the summer – obviously helps, but Vic also suffers from arthritis in his neck and elbows.

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"I swing a golf club every day of my life, even if it is only in the garden," said Vic. "I do it so that I can keep supple."

The first time Vic hit a ball was at the old Ipswich Driving Range in Bucklesham Road and he had caught the golfing bug.

He said: "When I worked as a painter and decorator for Cubitts, I used to carry a bucket of balls around with me. During my lunch hour I used a find a place where I could practice my chipping."

Vic has never a had a lesson from a professional, learning to play the game from a Nick Faldo-David Leadbetter video – and it hasn't done him any harm.

Vic's philosophy on the game is simple. "You don't have to be a long hitter to get your handicap down. I rely on keeping the ball down the middle of the fairway and avoiding trouble," he said.

"And you don't have to be a giant to hit the ball. Keep believing in yourself and there is no reason why you can't get better."

Vic has one remaining ambition, and that is to get down to single figures.

He's not far away and added: "I know I've got it in me to achieve it."

Vic would also like to get one more hole-in-one to add to the two he has had at St Clement's at the fourth and ninth holes.

Winning competitions is that much harder these days for Vic playing off his ten handicap, but that does not matter too much as he enjoys playing with his sons and grandchildren.

Son Michael plays off 21 at Ipswich GC and his stepson Frazer Morey is off nine.

Vic's two grandsons, Justin and Jonathan, are both members at St Clement's. Jonathan has won the junior championship twice so far.

Vic's an ideal role model for any player who thinks he's past it.

It would be fitting if he could soon achieve his ambition of becoming a single figure handicapper.

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