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ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT with Shane Cortese

Plugging the gap between gigs!

So when on a break between jobs what does an entertainer do? Going to a show is kind of like a busmans holiday, so I thought I would focus on something that has been entertaining me for years. Now I say entertaining but its probably better described as Frustrating me!
I often get asked to play in corporate or Celebrity type sports events. I’m a sports lover through and through so it’s a no brainer but more than often they are of the golfing nature!
They are a great way to raise charitable funds and profile of business.
Quite a few of my work mates are keen golfers and we try to play as often as we can. Guys like Geoff Dolan from The Almighty Johnsons, and Will Hall from Nothing Trivial. We give each other hell for 18 holes, except when Writer and creator James Griffin plays, then we are very polite and often give him a few shots to make him feel good!!
Anyway my golf is pretty average at best but I love the game. I constantly want to improve my technique and handicap. I have been playing for 20 years without a lesson, well until October last year, where I took the plunge and had an appraisal at the Institute of Golf next to Kristin school.
I must say straight up I felt a little nervous walking in for my first lesson, I mean this is where Lydio Ko and Mike Hendry practice day in day out.
I should not have worried one little bit. Craig Dixon one of the owners and resident pro couldn’t have made me feel more relaxed. It doesn’t matter whether you are a pro on the circuit or a high handicap golfer everyone is treated with the same respect and enthusiasm grown from a love of seeing people enjoy golf.
My weaknesses (many) were quickly worked out and a training schedule and plan of attack to fix them quickly worked out. Goals were put in place along with time frames to reach them. Along with a programme of lessons It was up to me to get to the Institute and practice in their driving range which was all included in my package.
Once I graduated from the first training phase it was up to Gulf Harbour, surely one of the most beautiful courses in Auckland for further practice and lessons. Mauri (Muldy), Craigs assistant coach and my trainer wheels, runs me through drills and irons before Guy Wilson excuses himself from coaching Lydia Ko to give me an extended lesson on chipping.
The next day its off around the course for 18 holes with Mauri where we start putting into practice what we have been working on. Its working as on the par three third I hit to within three centimetres of my first hole in one!
Its quite possibly the best money I have ever spent on golf but more importantly I’m back to enjoying the game which has a spin off in a hole lot of other areas!
Next step the Pro Am at the Hills. I mean if Don Cheadle can tour the world playing golf on the back of acting who knows!
Next month we’ll be back talking work!

by Shane Cortese

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