The Vale academy will actively encourage all children with an interest in the sport to get involved and play, without the need for expensive joining fees. A selected number of Elite squad members will then be offered the opportunity to be supported and developed up to professional standard.
Members of the Academy have already seen an outstanding level of success, including 20 year old Zac Gould, winning the coveted Golden Cross at Harlech and Richard Williams, 20, setting a new course record at St Andrews. Rhys Pugh, 14, who represented Wales at Under-16 level, became the youngest person to win a senior Glamorgan event this year. He was also selected for the Glamorgan Under-18 team, won the Clwyd Amateur Championship, the South Wales Boys’ Under-15 Championship, the Junior Welsh Open Under-15 title, qualified for the Faldo Series Final and helped Glamorgan Under-18s to win the Channel League Final.
The independent 4 star Vale Resort is well suited to house the academy having firmly established itself as one of the top golfing venues in the UK. Its world-class facilities and two championship courses, the Wales National and the Lake have won top industry accolades and received endorsement from leading sporting figures.
The championship facilities include an all weather driving range, two practice putting greens, computerized video analysis, swing check and coaching from top professionals, custom club fitting service and a fully stocked professional shop.
Each junior will progress through the coaching manual and potentially attain a high level of proficiency before being selected to join the Team Squad and then the Elite Squad.
The Elite Squad has been specifically designed to nurture and develop young golfers with the talent and ambition to become professional golfers in tournament or teaching and will instill responsibilities in members to demonstrate a high standard of behaviour both on and off the course. In return juniors may receive a range of benefits including free practice range balls, free golf membership, free leisure club membership, a range of Vale Elite Academy clothing, selective assistance with expenses and additional coaching from David Llewellyn, a leading technical consultant.
Clive Coombs, Head Professional and Golf Operations Manager at the Vale Resort said: We firmly believe that actively supporting golf at a grass roots level is essential to developing the sport in the UK. We have a number of exceptionally talented youngsters in the local area that deserve to be given the opportunities to develop their talents.
Investing in sports talent development is something that we are wholly committed to at the Vale, and the Junior Golf Academy is an integral part of our overall strategy to provide the dedicated facilities and support to nurture and develop excellence in sport.
The Vale Resort is currently leading the way in investing in sports excellence for golf, rugby and football – with exceptional results.
The facilities at the unique Indoor Training Arena at the Vale Resort are considered to be among the finest of their kind anywhere in the UK. Home to both the Wales rugby and football international sides, the facilities also played host to FA Cup winning clubs Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea and Manchester United when the competition final was staged at the Millennium Stadium while the new Wembley was being built. Both Cardiff City and Cardiff Blues also use the centre as their daily training base.
Work is also almost complete on the £10m Hensol Castle Elite Sports Academy a 40-acre development in the grounds of the Vale Resort that will feature six international-standard training pitches for soccer and rugby and include an artificial grass pitch built to FIFA and IRB specifications.
For more information on the academy please call 01443 665827 or log onto www.vale-hotel.com.