GOLF Minister Announces 2006 Team Ireland Golf Trust Recipients

28 Feb 2006


- €270,000 allocated to 22 aspiring Irish golf tour professionals in 2006
- Trust golfers to avail of new facilities at Carton House

“The Team Ireland Golf Trust has established a successful track record in developing the best of Irish professional golf talent. The sustained investment has led to an increase in the presence of Irish golfers on the international tours and helped maintain Ireland’s reputation as a great supporter of the game of golf”. Minister O’Donoghue
February 28, 2006 

The Team Ireland Golf Trust has allocated a total of €270,000 to aspiring golfers who are pursuing their careers on professional golf tours. The Trust targets golfers who have playing rights on the major tours and young golfers who are starting out to compete on the professional golf circuit.

In an important new development the golfers supported by Team Ireland Golf Trust will be able to avail of the new golf academy at Carton House free of charge. The Golf Union of Ireland’s National Coaching Academy will be available to the Trust golfers from April 2006 and is another important element in the partnership approach to supporting golf talent that underpins the Trust.
The Minister for Arts, Sport and Tourism, Mr John O’Donoghue T.D., making the Team Ireland Golf Trust announcement today (February 28, 2006), stated- “The Trust has been successful in two important objectives. Firstly, it enables talented young golfers to achieve their full potential. Secondly, the participation and success of Irish golfers in the international golf tours is an important advertisement of Ireland as a golf tourism destination, especially in Ryder Cup year”.   

2005 was another successful year for the Golf Trust, with more Trust graduate joining the major tours. In 2006 Trust recipients Stephen Browne, David Higgins and Michael Hoey will play the PGA European Tour and Rebecca Coakley will be the sole Irish cardholder on the Ladies European Tour. Former Trust recipients Peter Lawrie, Gary Murphy and Damian McGrane are now well established on the European Tour.

Ossie Kilkenny, Chairperson of the Irish Sports Council, commented; “The Trust demonstrates the value of a partnership approach, with all agencies working together to support talented golfers with the shared aim of ensuring Ireland has a presence on the major Tours”.

This is the seventh year of the Trust, which has provided more than €1.5 million financial support to golfers to date. The Trust, which is administered by the Irish Sport Council, aims to contribute to an increase in the presence of Irish golf professionals on the various international tours. It is a partnership between state agencies, private companies and the various golf organisations.  The Irish Sports Council and Failte Ireland provide financial backing along with private sector interests IAWS, O’Callaghan Hotels and the PGA European Tour. 

The golfers on the scheme also have access to the sports science and medicine network provided by the Irish Sports Council to the athletes on the International Carding Scheme and administered by the National Coaching and Training Centre in Limerick.

The Irish PGA, the Golfing Union of Ireland and the Irish Ladies Golf Union, along with the state and corporate supporters, are represented on the Team Ireland Golf Trust committee, which is chaired by Mr Padraig O’hUiginn.

For further information contact Austin Mallon, Irish Sports Council; 01-8608800

The following are the grants for 2006.

Stephen Browne €20,000
Rebecca Coakley €20,000
David Higgins €20,000
Michael Hoey €20,000
Colm Moriarty €20,000
Eamonn Brady €15,000
John Kelly €15,000
Noel Fox €10,000
Tim Rice €10,000
Justin Kehoe €10,000
Gareth Maybin €10,000
Padraig Dooley €10,000
David Mortimer €10,000
Mervyn Owens €8,000
Michael McGeady €8,000
Mark O’Sullivan €8,000
Sean McTernan €8,000
Michael McDermott €7,000
Peter Williamson €7,000
David Jones €5,000
Simon Thornton €5,000
Daniel Sugrue €3,000