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The Viv Thomas Masters 2008

Adult film maker Viv Thomas, a keen golfer since the age of 13, regularly invites clients and friends to visit him in Portugal to play golf, drink wine and to feast on local cuisine in his favourite restaurants. It was during one such visit that Viv came up with the idea of a golf tournament, the inaugural VivThomas Masters 2008, which took place in June.

Erigo Distribution, Viv Thomas’ UK and EU DVD distributor, invited representatives from five companies who accounted for the most Viv Thomas DVD sales in 2007 as a way of thanking them for their support.

Pulse n’ Cocktails, Nice ‘n’ Naughty and Harmony were unfortunately unable to attend but Soho Original Books (represented by Anthony Alghaban), ABS (represented by Clive Minion), Darker Enterprises (represented by Brian Richards) joined Erigo’s Robert Pretorius in the UK group.

Here, Robert Pretorius shares his daily diary of the event.

Sunday 8th June:
We all met at Gatwick airport at 4pm. All very excited and proceeded to the bar for a welcoming pint. Even a delayed flight and a lost passport could not dampen the spirits of the golfing Four. We took off minus one and proceeded to sample all the beer that could be consumed during a 2 hour flight. At Faro airport, we were met by Viv’s driver who escorted us to the hotel for check in. It was late, approx 11 pm when we arrived. Viv and the rest of the golfing entourage had not yet left the restaurant where they were dining and so we proceeded down the road to the local pub called the Melting Pot (Viv’s local) where we waited for them. And so after midnight we finally got to meet the rest of the golfing party; some 24 players, from all around the world. Judging by the state they were in, the four of us figured we were in good company and proceeded to join them in our first of many drinking marathons, well after midnight.

Monday 9th June:
We all met for breakfast at 9:30, noticeably quieter than the night before and got on with fixing our hangovers with coffee and toast. One of the party, a chap by the name of Dave, walked into the breakfast room at approx 10am looking the worse for wear. His eyes were bloodshot and half closed. He called for the waiter and asked for something to make him see better. The waiter was confused. Dave explained: “Something like a vodka and Coke will do.” Later on he asked for some Vitamin C. Again the poor waiter was confused. “Vodka and orange juice,” Dave explained. And so started our morning ritual of having a ‘Dave’ – a vodka with orange juice straight after breakfast.

We played at the Quinta do Lago, North Course. Better Ball Stable Ford. First tee off @ 12:16pm. A beautiful course intersecting homes of the likes of Alex Ferguson and Michael Owen to name just a few. It was here that we finally got down to business and had a fabulous day of play. As we were six teams of four balls, it took almost an hour to get us all off the tee. We were all well watered prior to teeing off and were kept refreshed by a roving golf buggy that served cold beer! After our round ended, we all met at the club house for a few more pints and a prize giving ceremony. That evening, we all dined at a gentleman’s club, St. James, where we were treated to a traditional South African BBQ (Braai). A show was then put on for us gentlemen and that’s all I have to say about Monday night.

Tuesday 10th June:
Course: Quinta do Lago, South Course. Better Ball Scramble. First tee off @ 13:04pm. This was the other side of the same resort and was just as good as the North course. Once again, the same format as Monday, including the Dave’s. For dinner, we were all taken to Ribeiros Churrasqueira, another typical Portuguese eating house, where the speciality is peri peri chicken. After the superb meal and fine wine, we made our way back to the Melting Pot for a few more beers.

Wednesday 11th June:
Course: Pinherios Altos. Better Ball Texas Scramble. First tee off @ 11:46am. We were all feeling a little more tired today but after the customary Dave’s, we were raring to go. Another great course but my memory becomes a bit hazy now. Dinner was at Antonio’s on the beach. This was a fantastic restaurant. The fish was delicious and very, very fresh. Again we ended up in the Melting Pot late that evening where two members of our party evicted the live Portuguese band and proceeded to entertain us with a very good rendition of Stairway to Heaven and several other classics.

Thursday 12th June:
Course: The Royal-Vale do Lobo. Better Ball Bonus Bogey. First tee off @ 11:52am. My liver refused to work this morning and so I gave it a double dose of ‘Dave’ – that seemed to sort it out and I managed to get to the first tee but then lost my ball in the parking lot! Things could only get better. And they did. The 16th hole was beautiful, with the ocean on one side, us teeing off a cliff, over a ravine and onto the green. This hole is said to be the most photographed hole in the world. Somehow, we all thought that we were going to meet a porn star! That evening we had dinner at the very posh Vale dos Pinherios where the final batch of prizes were handed out. Clive Minion from ABS and his partner were runner ups. Had Brian Richards played on day one, he and John Graham would have won the tournament. I will let Brian tell that story… The evening ended off with thank you speeches and farewells with a hint that the event may become an annual affair. Back to the Melting Pot for last pints and some more live music from our resident ageing rockers.

Friday 13th June 2008
Departure day. No Dave’s were drunk at breakfast today. Said our goodbyes and headed out to the airport. Arrived back at Gatwick at 1pm.

The tournament will be remembered forever. Not only was the golf and entertainment top notch, but the sheer camaraderie amongst the players, from all around the world, was enriching. Everyone had a great time, it was a week to remember.

Thanks Viv and the team at Vivthomas.com for putting on such a generous tournament, which was played in such good spirit. Anyone interested in playing next year, can contact Avril at Vivthomas.com on +351281320010 or email [email protected]