PHOTO GALLERY: Juniors fire on fairways at Summer Classic
GOLF: Yeppoon's Ben Swaffield has picked up where he left off last year, winning his first title just five days into 2018.
The talented teenager carded an impressive 66 on the final day to score a one-shot win in the seventh annual RBA Summer Classic at Capricorn Resort.
Swaffield trailed overnight leader, 11-year-old Isaak Jensen from Yeppoon, by three shots heading into the second day of the 36-hole tournament.
Capricorn Resort's Ben Scott was sitting in second.
"I brought it home well,” Swaffield said. "I had four-under on the back nine which sealed the win.
"It came down to the last hole. Ben and I were even with one hole to play and I finished with a birdie.”
Jensen finished third.
Blackwater's Rae Weiki fired rounds of 81 and 77 to win the A-grade girls division from Angel Pizzichemi from Cairns.
More than 60 golfers from across the state took part in the Classic in events ranging from three holes to 18 holes.
The golfers also enjoyed a day's coaching with Yeppoon's Matthew Campbell, Gracemere's Colin Baynton and Gurney Clamp from Golf Central Queensland before the Classic teed off on Thursday.
The consistent Swaffield said it was good to get the new year off to a winning start after a stellar 2017.
He won 10 of the 11 junior opens he played (and was second in the other) in 2017 and was named the CQ Junior Golfer of the Year.
He won the Gracemere Men's Open and in what he rates as a career highlight, finished sixth in the 18-years division at the prestigious Greg Norman Junior Masters on the Gold Coast.
"I don't know if there was one thing that contributed to that success,” Swaffield said.
"I think in the end it's about the hard work and effort paying off for me.
"I also worked on the mental side of my game which also helps in the big moments.”
Swaffield now has his sights set on moving to America later this year.
"That's the best place for me to be if I want to pursue my golfing career,” he said.
"Hopefully, I can get established at a college over there, play plenty of tournaments and get a world ranking.
"I know that it will take a lot of hard work, practice and commitment but I'm ready to give it a real shot.”
A-grade: boys Ben Swaffield (Yeppoon); girls Rae Weiki (Blackwater)
B-grade: boys Nathan Beauchamp (Rockhampton); girls Caitlyn Cox (Rockhampton)
C-grade: boys Tim Hermann (Mackay); girls Amara Burns (Bargara)
13 holes: boys Coben Simpson (Bargara); girls Lexy Olive (Blackwater)
Nine holes: boys Jeremy Bretherton (Emerald); girls Hana Taare (Mackay)
Six holes: boys Justin Callow (Gladstone); girls Lily McGuiness (Black Springs)
Three holes: boys Jet Fischer (Yeppoon)