TORQUAY Golf Club assistant Nathan Gilpin experienced a topsy-turvy first visit to the West Region PGA Cornish Festival and eventually helped his team finish sixth out of 11 groups over the links at Trevose, St Enodoc and Newquay.
He won £180, his first cheque as a professional, with the help of amateurs Tom Hicks, Todd Radford and Mike Spurway after compiling 251 points over the three rounds.
They scored 84 on the opening day at Trevose and followed with 86 and 81.
Gilpin just finished out of the individual prizes after a finishing in a tie for 43rd on ten-over-par 19.
But he can look back with satisfaction on his week. He was heading for one of the best rounds of the opening day at Trevose until he faltered over the final three holes when he slipped from two under par to six over.
A bogey at the short 16th was followed by a six at the par-four 17th and a tragic nine at the closing hole.
He had a an indifferent day at Newquay where he returned five-over-par 74 but he excelled on the final day at sunny St Enodoc with an outstanding one-under 68 – a career-best round – containing an eagle two at the 14th and a birdie at the tenth.
He finished 19 shots behind winner Plymouth's one-time European Tour player James Ruth in a field dominated by present and past Tour players after a final round of five-under-par 66 at Trevose.
He totalled 200 to win by one shot from former Ryder Cup man Paul Broadhurst who inched one clear of overnight leader Liam Bond (Marriott St Pierre) after carding 65 with an eagle and six birdies at Trevose.
Former St Mellion touring player Ruth, 29, will spend three years as a PGA trainee and represented his new club China Fleet for the first time. It was Ruth's only second outing of the season – the first was in the Sunningdale Foursomes where he and partner Paul Hendriksen (Dinnaton) reached the quarter finals.
Hendriksen finished seventh in Cornwall on 206 (72 67 67) to win £690.