Record entries for Cam Smith Classic

Published 5:00pm 5 December 2023

Record entries for Cam Smith Classic
Words by Nick Crockford

The seventh Cameron Smith Junior Classic (CSJC), at Wantima Country Club in Brendale this week, will be the biggest yet.

A record 224 players will tee off on Thursday and Friday – way up on 132 who entered the first Classic, named after one of the world's top golfers.

Cameron Smith grew up in Bray Park, went to Pine Rivers State High School and learned to play at Wantima. He is now based in the US.

Smith won the 150th Open Championship at St Andrews last year, was ranked two in the world and has won the Australian PGA three times.

Wesley Hinton receiving his awards last year from Cameron Smith

“It’s fantastic to have more than 200 players taking part this year,” said Smith, who has provided some of the top prizes for this year’s event.

“Our aim is to grow and keep improving the tournament so full credit to the organising team and thanks to all the players who have entered.

“I’m looking forward to seeing everyone at Wantima.”

There will be 152 starters on Thursday in the 36-hole two-day event for players under 18 with a GA (Golf Australia) handicap.

Friday’s nine-hole event for those under 14 without a handicap, has a field of 72. Waiting lists are operating for both in case of late withdrawals.

Cameron Smith with 2022 girls winner Kirra St-Laurant and the framed signed shirt she won.

Ken McKay, the CSJC founder and co-organiser, has also fielded calls from New Zealand and South Korea about entering players.

“It feels like it is becoming a sought-after event,” McKay said, “the feedback we’re getting is it is well run for the kids and the parents.

“If you had asked me seven years ago where I wanted the tournament to be … I say this (year's event) has exceeded it!

“That’s because of Cameron (Smith), Shane (Johnnson, co-organiser) who has been in on this since day one, the wonderful volunteers, the club and ground staff.”

Record entries for Cam Smith Classic
Cameron Smith with all the girls' winners at Wantima

Entries have come from across Queensland and especially the host club Wantima, which will have more than 10 lining-up for the 18-hole tournament.

Redcliffe will also be represented, while players from Sydney, the NSW south coast, Bowen, Proserpine and Rockhampton are also making the trip to Brendale.

The nine-hole competition has also attracted more than 10 from Wantima, four from Bribie Island and one from Woodford.

All three 2022 boys’ grade winners – Wesley Hinton (A Grade) from Keperra, Elio Di Bella (B Grade) from Rowes Bay and Byron Rieck (C Grade) from Sanctuary Cove, have entered again.

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