South Beach International Amateur – 2019 Preview & Results

3rd December 2019

The 9th South Beach International Amateur (SBIA) will be played between 19th – 22nd December 2019 in Miami Beach, Florida (GMT -5 hrs).

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First played in 2011 the SBIA has quickly become one of the world’s leading amateur golf competitions.

It has always attracted an international field and many of Europe’s leading amateurs will again be competing this year.

I will continue to update this article in the lead up to and during the competition.

Format

The SBIA is a 72 hole stroke play competition played over four days.

18 holes are played at both Miami Beach G.C. and the nearby Normandy Shores G.C. over the first two days.

After a top 72 and ties cut the final 36 holes are played exclusively at Miami Beach over the remaining two days.

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Miami Beach Golf Club (Photo: Miami Beach GC)

Players

A field of 210 players have paid the $385 entry fee and will contest the 2019 SBIA.

The SBIA is expected to have the 5th strongest field in amateur golf in 2019. Only the U.S. Amateur (1st), The Amateur (2nd), Western Amateur (3rd) and NCAA Division I National (4th) will have been better.

Historically around 50% of the players are drawn from overseas with around 30 countries normally represented.

18 golfers from Great Britain & Ireland (GB&I) are currently in this year’s starting field. The highest number to date was 19 in 2018. I’ve listed this year’s GB&I entries below along with their current SPWAR (as at 3rd December): –

Jake BOLTON (ENG) #122
Jack BROOKS (ENG) #297
Barclay BROWN (ENG) #696
Archie DAVIES (WAL) #460
Enrique DIMAYUGA (ENG) #444
Angus FLANAGAN (ENG) #94
Andrew GIBSON (SCO) #1,484
Jake HIBBERT (ENG) #1,098
Olly HUGGINS (ENG) #217
Ben JONES (ENG) #18
Curtis KNIPES (ENG) #124
Max MARTIN (ENG) #906
Tom MCKIBBIN (N.I.) #327
Joe PAGDIN (ENG) #163
Sam ROOK (ENG) #765
Philip ROWE (ENG) #3,250 – Assistant Coach UNLV, 1999 GB&I Walker Cup (P3 W3)
Ben SCHMIDT (ENG) #82
Charlie THORNTON (ENG) #226

Courses

Both courses were designed by Arthur Hills and play to around 6,800 yards.

They are typical Florida layouts with numerous lakes coming into play throughout the 18 holes. As a result scores can be high if the wind blows – which it frequently does.

Normandy Shores plays to a par of 70 and Miami Beach a par of 71.

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Normandy Shores G.C. (Photo: miamibeachguest.com) 

Weather Forecast (as at 3rd December)

As one would expect the weather forecast looks generally good for the duration of the competition.

Wed 19th Dec. – Sunny Intervals / Wind 13 mph SE / Temp. Min. 26°C, Max. 17°C.
Thur 20th Dec – Sunny Intervals / Wind 15 mph E / Temp. Min. 27°C, Max. 18°C.
Fri 21st Dec – Sunny Intervals / Wind 14 mph SE / Temp. Min. 28°C, Min 20°C.
Sat 22nd Dec – Sunny Intervals / Wind 15 mph S / Temp. Min. 26°C, Max. 18°C.

SBIA Website Links

Click here to view the – SBIA Website

Click here to view the – SBIA 2019 Information

Click here to view the – SBIA 2019 Leaderboard

2018 South Beach International Amateur

The 2018 South Beach International Amateur was played in windy conditions with play in Round 3 ultimately having to be suspended.

Pierceson COODY (USA), a Freshman at the University of Texas and the grandson of 1971 Masters Champion Charles Coody, won the competition with a 272 (-11) total.

A fast finishing Manuel TORRES (VEN), who studies at the nearby Lynn University, shot an impressive 33 on his final back nine for a 66 (-5) to finish one shot back.

Jake BURNAGE (ENG) finished 3rd on 275 (-8). Jake shot a 64 (-6) at Normandy Shores on Day 1 to share the lead before playing very consistently throughout the remainder of the tournament; rounds of 70, 70 and 71 at Miami Beach enabling him to place.

Four other Englishmen made the cut. Jake BOLTON (+1) finished tied 21st, Joe PAGDIN (+3) tied 26th, Ben JONES and Max MARTIN (both +10) tied 62nd.

19 players from Great Britain and Ireland competed last year.

Click here to view the – SBIA 2018 Results

Click here to view the – SBIA 2017 Results

Here is a list of past winners and the 36 hole cut marks for each year: –

2018 – Pierceson COODY (USA) -11 / Cut +3
2017 – Jacob BERGERON (USA) -3 / Cut Ev
2016 – Danny WALKER (USA) -4 / Cut +1
2015 – Jorge GARCIA (VEN) -5 / Cut +6
2014 – Gabriel LENCH (USA) -4 / Cut +3
2013 – Greg EASON (ENG) -5 / Cut +6
2012 – Juan Pablo HERNANDEZ (MEX) -10 / Cut +3
2011 – Kelly KRAFT (USA) -4 / Cut +11

ME.

Copyright © 2014-2019, Mark Eley. All rights reserved.

The 2020 GB&I Men’s National Squads

30th November 2019

Here is a complete list of the 2020 Men’s National Squads for each of the four home nations.

All of the players selected are listed below along with their current Scratch Players World Amateur Ranking (SPWAR).

In addition I have also listed other leading players who for a variety of reasons have not been included in their national squads.img_8619

ENGLAND

England Golf announced their two men’s Squads on 29th November 2019.

Men’s Squad
Ben Schmidt – 17, Yorkshire (82)
Ben Jones – 21, Northamptonshire (18)
Robin Williams – 18, Nothamptonshire (186)
Joe Long – 22, Gloucestershire (116)
Jake Bolton – 21, Wiltshire (122)
Tom Plumb – 20, Somerset (48)
Callum Farr – 21, Northamptonshire (147)
Matty Lamb – 21, Northumberland (78)
Charlie Strickland – 20, Sussex (322)

Men’s A Squad
Sam Bairstow – 21, Yorkshire (196)
Harry Goddard – 19, Hertfordshire (271)
Arron Edwards-Hill – 19, Essex (73)
Sam Broadhurst – 22, Warwickshire (210)
Jack Brooks – 28, Cheshire (302)
Max Martin – 22, Warwickshire (914)
Charlie Thornton – 21, Yorkshire (227)
Joe Harvey – 22, Gloucestershire (326)

Other Elite Players
Oliver Farrell – Worcestershire & USA (199)
Alex Fitzpatrick – Yorkshire / Wake Forest University, USA (39)
Angus Flanagan – Surrey / University of Minnesota, USA (94)
Jack Floydd – Sussex (130)
Conor Gough (U18) – Berkshire, Buckinghamshire & Oxfordshire (269)
John Gough – Berkshire, Buckinghamshire & Oxfordshire / UNC Charlotte, USA (167)
David Hague – Yorkshire (210)
Josh Hill (U18) – U.A.E. (250)
Olly Huggins – Berkshire, Buckinghamshire & Oxfordshire (216)
Curtis Knipes – Essex (124)
Jamie Li – Somerset / Florida State University, USA (152)
Daniel O’Loughlin – Nottinghamshire / University of Colorado, USA (148)
Joe Pagdin – 18, Yorkshire & Florida / University of Florida, USA – from Sept. 2020 (164)

IRELAND

The Golf Union of Ireland announced their Squad on the 8th November 2019.

Men’s National Panel
Robert Brazill – Naas (291)
Colm Campbell – Warrenpoint (342)
Keith Egan – Carton House (1,050)
Sean Flanagan – Portmarnock (1,039)
Eanna Griffin – Waterford (563)
Rowan Lester – Hermitage (244)
Matthew McClean – Malone (507)
Tom McKibbin – Holywood (327)
Tiarnán McLarnon – Massereene (158)
Ronan Mullarney – Galway (59)
John Murphy – Kinsale / University of Louisville, USA (87)
Peter O’Keeffe – Douglas (384)
Mark Power – Kilkenny / Wake Forest University, USA (104)
Conor Purcell – Portmarnock (TURNED PRO ON 27/11/19)
Caolan Rafferty – Dundalk (17)
James Sugrue – Mallow (83)

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SCOTLAND

The 2020 Scottish Men’s Squad is yet to be confirmed but is expected to be selected from the following players: –

Men’s Squad (to be confirmed)
Callum Bruce – San Diego State University, USA (597)
Matthew Clark (222)
Stuart Easton (316)
Rory Franssen – University of Missouri, USA (345)
Darren Howie (489)
Jim Johnston (693)
Eric McIntosh – Northwestern University, USA (433)
Euan McIntosh (206)
Connor McKinney – Western Australia (135)
John Paterson – University of Colorado, USA (550)
Stephen Roger (261)
Sandy Scott – Texas Tech University, USA (22)
Jamie Stewart – University of Missouri, USA (370)
James Wilson (138)
Jeff Wright (486)

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WALES

The 2019-20 boy’s and men’s players receiving support are listed on the Wales Golf website.

High Performance Programme
Toby Bishop (2,141)
George Bryant (1,561)
Caolan Burford (NR)
Archie Davies (462)
Jacob Davies (530)
Will Fido (NR)
Jake Hapgood (256)
Callum Hook (NR)
Connor Jones (1,589)
Joe Jones (NR)
Ethan Langley (NR)
Charlie McKinney (NR)
Connor Owen (1,417)
Sam Peet (NR)
Tom Peet (2,804)
Matt Roberts (1,220)
Ioan Rowe (NR)
Matthew Rumsey (NR)
Matthew Sandoz (2,269)
William Sandoz (NR)
Lewys Sanges (643)
Charley Simpson (NR)
Dylan Thomas (2,841)
Gaelen Trew (247)
Ryan Williams (NR)

Other Elite Players
Ben Chamberlain (358)
Tom Froom (954)

ME.

Copyright © 2019, Mark Eley. All rights reserved.

Gary Wolstenholme

28th November 2019

Gary Wolstenholme will forever be known as “The man who beat Tiger” in the 1995 Walker Cup match at Royal Porthcawl.

There is of course much more to his story than a single win though.

Wolstenholme’s record and commitment to the amateur game is simply unparalleled. Given his longevity and the era in which he played, with its greater depth, he is arguably Great Britain & Ireland’s (GB&I) greatest ever amateur golfer.

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Gary Peter Wolstenholme MBE was born in Egham, Surrey on 21st August 1960.

His father was Guy Wolstenholme a renowned amateur and professional golfer in the 1950s and ’60s. Peter Alliss is one of Gary’s god-parents due to his long friendship with his father. Sadly Guy died from cancer in October 1984 well before his son’s golfing peak.

Gary’s parents divorced when he was four years old and it was his mother Joan, and her parents, that brought Gary up in Grange-over-Sands in Cumbria. When he was 10 the family moved to Keighley in Yorkshire and Gary was sent off to boarding school at Giggleswick. He completed his schooling there save for an 18 month period when he moved to Melbourne, Australia as his parents tried in vain to make their relationship work again.

He first played golf when he was 4 years old but didn’t start taking it seriously until he was 17. His father actively discouraged him knowing only too well how making a career in golf was fraught with difficulties. Gary was a 23 handicap when he was 18 and whilst he dropped his handicap rapidly thereafter still only earned his first England cap when he was 27.

Always a short hitter off the tee he practiced for many hours to ensure he got the maximum out of his game. His consistency, short game and confidence in his own ability enabled him to overcome many a supposedly stronger player in his lengthy career.

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Wolstenholme won The Amateur Championship twice. In 1991 he beat Bob May (USA) 8&6 at Ganton GC and in 2003 he beat Raphael De Sousa (SUI) 6&5 at Royal Troon GC.

His 2003 win came when he was 42, making him one of the oldest champions in the history of this prestigious competition.

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Gary Wolstenholme With The Amateur Championship In 2015 (Photo: Age Partnership)

In his long career Gary won numerous other national and international titles (see Appendix 1), including the Golf Illustrated Gold Vase, the Duncan Putter (3), the Berkshire Trophy (3), the Welsh Stroke Play, the Scottish Stroke Play, the Sherry Cup (4), the Lagonda Trophy and the Lee Westwood Trophy.

However, like his career amateur predecessor Peter McEvoy, the English Amateur Championship always alluded him. Whilst his father was a two-time winner the closest Gary came to lifting the trophy was a 4&2 loss to Paul Casey in the 2000 final at Royal Lytham & St. Annes. It was his only defeat in a major final.

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Gary played in five Majors – the 1992 and 2004 Masters, the 1992 (Muirfield) and 2003 (Royal St. George’s) Open’s and the 2008 U.S. Open (Torrey Pines) – but missed the cut in all of them.

He played with a 62 year old Arnold Palmer in round 1 of the 1992 Masters and recorded an even par 72 at Augusta. In 2004 he was paired with Tom Watson shooting 77 and 76.

He made more of an impression with some of the other professional tournament invites he received. He was the leading amateur at the 1993 Benson and Hedges International and 2004 British Masters and also made the cut at the 1992 Australian Masters.

He was also invited to play in the 1992 Memorial Tournament by Jack Nicklaus.

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Throughout his long career Wolstenholme derived the most satisfaction from his team selection for England, GB&I and Europe.

He is the most capped player in world amateur golf, playing 218 times for England. Between April 1988 and 2008 he won 130 games, halved 25 and lost 63, earning 142.5 points for his country.

England won the Home Internationals 13 times and the European Men’s Team Championships at Hillside in 2005 with Gary in the team. Gary played seven times for England in the latter competition between 1997 and 2007.

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Wolstenholme has consistently stated over the years that winning the Eisenhower Trophy for GB&I in Chile in 1998 was the highlight of his golfing career.

All four of Gary’s scores counted in the 72 hole event, including a final round 67 which helped take the four man GB&I team 4 shots clear of Australia and USA.

Having the golf medal placed around his neck while the national anthem was playing was his crowning glory.

In addition to 1998 he also played in the World Amateur Team Championship for GB&I in 1996 (Philippines) and, after each home nation started to enter separately, England in 2002 (Malaysia) and 2004 (Puerto Rico).

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Gary played on six Walker Cup teams, at Royal Porthcawl (1995), Quaker Ridge (1997), Nairn (1999), Ocean Forest (2001), Ganton (2003) and finally Chicago (2005).

He is the all-time leading points scorer for GB&I. He played 19 games in total, 11 Singles and 8 Foursomes, winning 5 of each (see Appendix 2). His wins against Tiger Woods in 1995 and Anthony Kim 10 years later being the obvious highlights. Unsurprisingly one rarely hears the second part of the Woods story which is that the two of them played again in the Day 2 Singles and that Tiger won relatively easily.

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Tiger Woods and Gary Wolstenholme At Porthcawl in 1995 (Photo: Sunday Times)

He was on the winning side four times; an impressive stat when one remembers GB&I have only won nine times in the 46 matches played since the contest started in 1922.

His leading points winner and most match win records are almost certainly never going to be broken due to the much changed nature of the amateur game.

Given his commitment to amateur golf and his status in the history of the Walker Cup it is disappointing that The R&A have not found themselves able to afford him the captaincy of the GB&I team to date (even accepting that he eventually turned professional).

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In 1998 the Bonallack Trophy match between Europe and Asia-Pacific started. Wolstenholme was selected for Europe on four occasions in 1998, 2000, 2004 and 2006. Europe won three of these matches and Gary holds the record for both the most games played and most points scored.

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Gary’s late blossoming meant he never really considered turning pro during his amateur career. He was simply never good enough while young enough and likewise when he became good enough he considered himself too old to embark on such a pursuit. He was also realistic enough to appreciate he didn’t have the finances to do so either. His somewhat nomadic life, he moved from Leicestershire to Bristol and then back again, meant he never really enjoyed a home fanbase which could have helped him attract local start-up sponsorship.

In September 2008, having just turned 48, Wolstenholme finally turned professional.

Whilst no one could begrudge Gary the opportunity to belatedly try and cash in on his years of hard work on the golf course he left the amateur ranks a little disillusioned. Both The R&A and England Golf had indicated to him that they wanted to focus on younger players going forward. If this was not bad enough neither party also seemed keen for him to play a role in helping to develop this next generation, something he had hoped for and perhaps expected.

Presented with little alternative, if he wished to continue playing golf competitively, he took the plunge; his theory being to acclimatise on development tours ahead of playing the Senior Tour after he turned 50 in 2010.

Shortly before this he had sold his house in Leicestershire and moved back in with his mother in Cumbria. He started an attachment with Carus Green Golf Club in Kendall as a result which continues to this day.

His first professional win came in July 2010 in the Stoke-By-Nayland event on the PGA EuroPro Tour where he shot a 63 in round 2 on his way to a -15 4-shot victory. At 49 years and 313 days old I assume he must be the oldest ever winner of a PGA EuroPro Tour event.

Gary made an impressive start to life on the European Senior Tour (now the Staysure Tour) in the Autumn of 2010. He finished third in his first event, the Travis Perkins Masters at Woburn, before winning the €90,000 first prize next time out at the 2010 Casa Serena Open (-13 by 3 shots) in the Czech Republic.

Wolstenholme went on to win a further two events; the 2012 Mallorca Open Senior (-8 by 2 shots) and the 2012 Benahavis Senior Masters (-13 by 1 shot).

He is currently playing his tenth season on the Staysure Tour. As at November 2019 he has played in 134 events and has to date amassed career prize winnings of €926,069.65. His decision to turn pro therefore appears to have been a good one.

He also won the 2011 ISPS Handa Australian Senior Open.

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Gary Wolstenholme Receives His MBE In May 2007 (Photo: Daily Mail)

Wolstenholme was awarded an MBE (for services to golf) in the 2007 New Year’s Honours list. “It’s a great honour and I’m very proud,” he said at the time. “This means everything to me. It salutes the sacrifices I’ve made to the game over the past 20 years but this is not just for me. It is also for those people who have helped me achieve what I have. Those at my club Kilworth Springs (where he was the Director of Golf for eight years), those who have coached me over the years, the people who helped me when I was in Bristol, and especially my mother without whom I wouldn’t have achieved anything.”

‘The Long and the Short of It: The Autobiography of Britain’s Greatest Amateur Golfer’ by Gary Wolstenholme (and Sunday Times journalist Derek Clements) was published by John Blake Publishing on 4th October 2010. It is dedicated to his mother Joan and presents an honest story of his career in the game.

Book Gary Wolstenholme

Gary’s AutobiographyThe Long And Short Of  It’ (Photo: GolfBible)

Over the years he has also been given honorary memberships at Berkhamsted GC, The Berkshire GC, Bristol & Clifton GC, County Sligo GC, GC of Georgia (USA), Grange-over-sands GC, Heysham GC, The Leicestershire GC, Morecambe GC, Scarborough North Cliff GC and Trevose G&CC.

In 2005 Wolstenholme was invited to join The R&A only for the invitation to be subsequently withdrawn by Chief Executive Peter Dawson after a couple of members, one presumably very senior, surprisingly ‘blackballed’ him for being “not suitable”.

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Gary Wolstenholme was sometimes viewed by his peers as a loner, an outsider; superstitious and a little eccentric on the one hand but occasionally arrogant and aloof too.

Having played most of his golf with players much younger than himself it was perhaps inevitable that some found it hard to build a rapport with him. The truth is Gary probably didn’t want them to. Like a great many champions he did what he believed to be necessary to fulfil his potential and get the job done.

For me his playing record and achievements certainly outweigh any character flaws that he may have had. He often talked about setting his name in stone within the history of the game. As the only amateur to win on all five continents he has undoubtedly done that.

GB&I amateur golf supporters owe him a debt of gratitude for the service he gave to his country over 20 years. Many of his playing records will never be broken and he will rightly take his place in history as our last great career amateur.

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Appendix 1 – Other Amateur Victories

1986 & 2002 – Midland Open Stroke Play

1987 – West of England Open Stroke Play

1989 – Golf Illustrated Gold Vase

1993 – Chinese Open Amateur Stroke Play Championship

1994, 1996 & 1999 – Duncan Putter

1994, 1996, 1998 & 2001 – English County Champion of Champions

1995 – United Arab Emirates Amateur,

1995, 1996 & 1998 – British Mid-Amateur Championship

1996 – Finnish Amateur Stroke Play Championship,

1996, 1997 & 2002 – Berkshire Trophy,

1997 – Welsh Open Amateur Stroke Play Championship

1998 & 2006 – St Mellion International Amateur Stroke Play

2000 & 2001 – Sherry Cup Invitational Stroke Play

2002 – Lagonda Trophy

2002 – South African Amateur Stroke Play Championship

2003 – Scottish Open Amateur Stroke Play Championship

2004 – Georgia Cup Match (v. US Amateur champion Nick Flanagan)

2005 – New South Wales Medal

2006 – South of England Open Stroke Play

2006 & 2007 – European Mid-Amateur Championship

2007 – New South Wales Amateur Championship

2008 – The Lakes Medal

2008 – Lee Westwood Trophy (his last ever amateur competition)

Appendix 2 – Walker Cup Results

1995 Royal Porthcawl Golf Club, Wales

GB&I 14 v. 10 USA

Day 1 Foursomes
Not selected

Day 1 Singles
W v. Tiger Woods by 1 hole

Day 2 Foursomes
L with L James v. G E Marucci Jnr & J Courville Jnr by 6&5

Day 2 Singles
L v. Tiger Woods by 4&3

1997 Quaker Ridge Golf Club, New York, USA

USA 18 v. 6 GB&I

Day 1 Foursomes
L with K Nolan v. J Gore & J Harris by 6&4

Day 1 Singles
L v. J Harris by 1 hole

Day 2 Foursomes
W with J Rose v. R Leen & C Wollman by 2&1

Day 2 Singles
L v. D Delcher by 2&1

1999 The Nairn Golf Club, Scotland

GB&I 15 v 9 USA

Day 1 Foursomes
W with P Rowe v. M Kuchar & B Molder by 1 hole

Day 1 Singles
Not selected

Day 2 Foursomes
W with P Rowe v. M Kuchar & B Molder by 4&3

Day 2 Singles
W v. D Gossett by 1 hole

2001 Ocean Forest Golf Club, Georgia, USA

USA 9 v 15 GB&I

Day 1 Foursomes
W with S O’Hara v. D Green & DJ Trahen by 5&3

Day 1 Singles
L to E Compton by 3&2

Day 2 Foursomes
Not selected

Day 2 Singles
W v. N Cassini by 4&3

2003 Ganton Golf Club, England

GB&I 12.5 v 11.5 USA

Day 1 Foursomes
L with M Skelton to B Haas & E Kuehne 2&1

Day 1 Singles
L to B Haas by 1 hole

Day 2 Foursomes
W with O Wilson v. B Haas & E Kuehne 5&4

Day 2 Singles
W v. C Wittenberg 3&2

2005 Chicago Golf Club, Illinois, USA

USA 12.5 v. 11.5 GB&I

Day 1 Foursomes
Not selected

Day 1 Singles
L v. J Holmes by 1 hole

Day 2 Foursomes
Not selected

Day 2 Singles
W v. A Kim by 1 hole

ME.

Copyright © 2015-2019, Mark Eley. All rights reserved.

European Tour Q-School – 2019 Final Stage Preview & Results

13th November 2019 (Updated 20th November 2019)

The European Tour’s FINAL STAGE QUALIFYING event was played between 15th – 20th November 2019 at Lumine Golf Club in Tarragona, Spain.

Lumine replaced PGA Catalunya Resort in 2017 and hosted Final Stage for the third consecutive time.

A total of six rounds or 108 holes were played over the venue’s two championship courses; the Lakes which plays 6,909 yards (par 71) and the Hills which is slightly longer at 6,975 yards (par 72).

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Lumine Beach & Golf Club – 18th hole, Hills Course (Photo: http://www.lumine.com)

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156 players from 28 different countries started Final Stage. 74 of them were exempt due to past performances and their previous status on the two tours, 79 were Second Stage Q-School qualifiers and the final 3 Second Stage Alternates (Gary STAL FRA,  Mathias EGGENBERGER AUT and Filip MRUZEK CZH).

Bjarki PETURSSON (ISL) turned Pro ahead of Final Stage which meant that no amateurs were competing in the event this year.

40 Great British & Irish players made the original lineup, 23 coming through Second Stage with the remainder being exempt. Unfortunately Paul DUNNE (IRE) withdrew before play commenced with a wrist injury taking our starters down to 39.

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77 players on -4 or better made the four round Top 70 cut and went on to play the final 36 holes exclusively on the Lakes Course. 22 GB&I players were amongst this number.

28 players finished tied 25th or better to earn a ‘full’ membership category on both the European and Challenge Tours for the 2020 season.

Benjamin POKE (DEN) earned medalist honours with a superb -25 total score.

8 GB&I players secured their cards – well done to Laurie CANTER (ENG), Garrick PORTEOUS (ENG), Marcus ARMITAGE (ENG), Bradley DREDGE (WAL), Jonathan CALDWELL (NIR), Dave COUPLAND (ENG), Toby TREE (ENG) and Dale WHITNELL (ENG).

Daniel YOUNG (SCO) and Tom GANDY (IOM) sadly missed out by one shot finishing tied 29th.

On average over the last 5 years the Final Stage medalist has received 29 European Tour starts whilst the 25th placed qualifier has garnered 19. Every finishing place therefore matters.

The players who made the 72 hole cut but finished outside the Top 25 also earned a membership category on the European Challenge Tour.

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I have specifically followed all of the Great British and Irish (GB&I) professionals, First Stage and Second Stage Qualifying medalists and a few other overseas ‘players of interest’. Here’s how they all finished: –

PLAYERS T25 OR BETTER EARNING A EUROPEAN TOUR CARD
1st  -25 Benjamin POKE (DEN) WINNER
T5   -16 Rasmus HØJGAARD (DEN)
T5   -16 Laurie CANTER (ENG)
T13 -14 Garrick PORTEOUS (ENG) – 2nd Stage Desert Springs
T13 -14 Marcus ARMITAGE (ENG) – 2nd Stage Las Colinas
T17 -13 Bradley DREDGE (WAL)
T17 -13 Jonathan CALDWELL (NIR) – 2nd Stage Bonmont
T17 -13 Dave COUPLAND (ENG) – 2nd Stage Bonmont
T17 -13 Toby TREE (ENG) – 2nd Stage Alenda
T25 -12 Dale WHITNELL (ENG)

PLAYERS FINISHING T70 OR BETTER WHO MADE THE 72 HOLE CUT
T29 -11 Daniel YOUNG (SCO) – 2nd Stage Desert Springs
T29 -11 Wilco NIENABER (RSA) TURNED PRO 7/19 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath / 2nd Stage Las Colinas
T29 -11 Tom GANDY (IoM) –1st Stage Hardelot / 2nd Stage Alenda
T34 -10 Steven TILEY (ENG)
T34 -10 Craig HOWIE (SCO) – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf / 2nd Stage Las Colinas
T44  -8 Niall KEARNEY (IRE) – 2nd Stage Alenda
T44  -8 David DIXON (ENG) – 2nd Stage Alenda
T44  -8 Gavin MOYNIHAN (IRE)
T51  -7 Nicolai HØJGAARD (DEN)
T51  -7 Matthew BALDWIN (ENG)
T51  -7 Marc WARREN (SCO)
T57  -6 Jordan WRISDALE (ENG) – 2nd Stage Alenda
T57  -6 Ewen FERGUSON (SCO)
T57  -6 Daniel GAVINS (ENG) – 2nd Stage Alenda
T65  -4 Euan WALKER (SCO) TURNED PRO 9/192nd Stage Las Colinas
67th -3 Aron ZEMMER (ITA) – 1st Stage Bogogno / 2nd Stage Bonmont WINNER
T68  -2 Ben STOW (ENG)

PLAYERS WHO MISSED THE 72 HOLE T70 CUT
T78  -3 Ben EVANS (ENG)
T78  -3 Liam JOHNSTON (SCO)
T78  -3 Robin DAWSON (IRE) – 2nd Stage Bonmont
T91  -1 Blake WINDRED (AUS) TURNED PRO 10/19 – 2nd Stage Desert Springs WINNER
T91  -1 Ben HUTCHINSON (ENG) TURNED PRO 9/191st Stage Frilford Heath / 2nd Stage Alenda
T96  Ev Björn HELLGREN (SWE) – 1st Stage Arlandastad WINNER / 2nd Stage Las Colinas
T96  Ev Chris CANNON (ENG) – 2nd Stage Bonmont
T96  Ev Scott GREGORY (ENG) – 2nd Stage Desert Springs
T96  Ev Lauri RUUSKA (FIN) – 1st Stage Fleesensee WINNER / 2nd Stage Bonmont
T106 +1 Ross MCGOWAN (ENG)
T106 +1 Will ENEFER (ENG) – 1st Stage Fleesensee / 2nd Stage Bonmont
T106 +1 Rhys ENOCH (WAL)
T106 +1 Gary KING (ENG) – 2nd Stage Las Colinas
T120 +3 Thomas ROSENMÜLLER (GER) TURNED PRO 10/19 – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf / 2nd Stage Las Colinas
T120 +3 Bjarki PETURSSON (ISL) TURNED PRO 11/19 – 1st Stage Fleesensee / 2nd Stage Bonmont
T120 +3 Jimmy JONES (CAN) – 2nd Stage Las Colinas WINNER
T131 +5 Jonathan THOMSON (ENG) – 2nd Stage Bonmont
T131 +5 Louis HIRST (ENG) – 2nd Stage Desert Springs
T134 +6 Ben BRISCOE (WAL) – 1st Stage Arlandastad / 2nd Stage Desert Springs
T134 +6 Jarand Ekelund ARNOY (NOR) – 1st Stage Stoke by Nayland / 2nd Stage Alenda WINNER
T138 +7 David MICHELUZZI (AUS) TURNED PRO 10/19 – 2nd Stage Bonmont
T138 +7 Michael HOEY (NIR) – 2nd Stage Las Colinas
T145 +8 Lee SLATTERY (ENG)
151 +15 Matteo MANASSERO (ITA)
152 +16 Steve WEBSTER (ENG)
WD Jamie DONALDSON (WAL) after Rd 2 (+2)
WD Paul DUNNE (IRE) before Rd 1

Click this link to view the European Tour website’s full – FINAL STAGE Q-SCHOOL RESULTS

____________________________________________

THE 2019 EUROPEAN TOUR QUALIFYING SCHOOL SERIES

The European Tour Qualifying School was first played in 1976, four years after the European Tour was founded. What started out as a 72 hole sprint has grown into potentially a 252 hole marathon.

Nowadays there are three stages of stroke play qualifying, First, Second and Final.

The 2019 European Tour Q-School entrance fee is £1,800 or €2,030 (2018: €2,000).

Some entrants are exempted straight into Second Stage or Final Stage based on their past results and ranking.

img_2246

First Stage

First Stage consisted of nine 72 hole stroke play qualifying events split into five Sections, A, B, C, D and E.

A total of 842 players contested First Stage Qualifying this year with 185 (22%) progressing to Second Stage. 83 of these were amateurs with a further 17 newly turned professionals. Of the First Stage qualifiers 22 started out as amateurs.

For a recap on the nine First Stage competitions played between 3rd September and 12th October please read my earlier article – European Tour Q-School – 2019 First Stage Preview & Results

Second Stage

The Second Qualifying Stage consisted of four separate 72-hole events played at Alenda Golf, Club de Golf Bonmont, Desert Springs GC and Las Colinas G&CC, all in Spain, concurrently on 7th-10th November 2019. The Alenda and Bonmont events required a fifth day due to strong winds.

183 of the 185 First Stage qualifiers were joined at Second Stage by those players who were exempt from the preliminary round due to their performances on the 2019 European Tour, Challenge Tour and other feeder / satellite tours.

The two missing First Stage qualifiers were, James NICHOLAS (USA) AM (1st Stage Bom Sucesso, Portugal) and Jordan NIEBRUGGE (USA) (1st Stage, Stoke-by-Nayland, England), who withdrew from the European Tour Qualifying Series after also qualifying for the Second Stage of the Korn Ferry Qualifying Series.

Exemptions into Second Stage were also given to the leading five Q-School entrants as at 21st August 2019, up to a limit of 15th place, in the Men’s World Amateur Golf Ranking. As a result of this David MICHELUZZI (AUS) and Euan WALKER (SCO) were both exempted into Second Stage this year.

325 players started Second Stage with 82 progressing (including three Alternates) to Final Stage. 18 players competed as amateurs.

For a recap on the nine First Stage competitions played between 3rd September and 12th October please read my earlier article – European Tour Q-School – 2019 Second Stage Preview & Results

ME.

Copyright © 2014-2019, Mark Eley. All rights reserved.

W. Lawson Little Jr

31st October 2019

William Lawson Little Jr. was born on 23rd June 1910 in Newport, Rhode Island, USA.

He is best known for his “Little Slam”, winning both the U.S. Amateur and Amateur Championships in 1934 and 1935. In these two years the Championships were both contested solely via match play.

He is the only player in history to have twice won both of these titles in the same year. Just three other players have achieved the ‘double’ in the same year – Harold Hilton (ENG) in 1911, Bobby Jones (USA) in 1930 and most recently Bob Dickson (USA) in 1967.

In achieving this feat he won an impressive 33 consecutive match play singles games in the two Amateur Championships and the Walker Cup¹.

Lawson Little Receives The 1934 Amateur Championship Trophy (Photo: Prestwick GC)

He started playing golf when he was 8 and was a student of English golf instructor Ernest Jones who emigrated to the New York area in the early 1920’s.

Little moved to San Francisco when his father, a colonel in the Army Medical Corps, was posted to California. He represented the Presidio G.C. in his adopted City throughout his career.

He first came to national prominence as a teenager in the late 1920’s. His 1928 and 1930 wins at the Northern Californian Amateur Championship helped but it was his part in the 1929 U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach that really did the trick. After Johnny Goodman beat Bobby Jones in Round 1 in one of the greatest golfing upsets of all time it was Little who knocked the Omaha man off his pedestal in their afternoon Round 2 match.

Little graduated from Stanford University in Autumn 1935 having majored in Economics and was subsequently inducted into their Athletic Hall of Fame.

Lawson Little With The U.S. Amateur Championship Trophy in 1934 (Photo: Leslie Jones)

Little played in one Walker Cup match in May 1934 at The Old Course in St. Andrews. He won his foursomes with Johnny Goodman 8&6 against Roger Wethered and Cyril Tolley on Day 1 and then thrashed Tolley again 6&5 in the Saturday singles.

He was awarded the Amateur Athletic Union’s James E. Sullivan Award for the most outstanding amateur athlete in the United States in 1935. This award, which is still handed out annually today, has only been given to a golfer twice, Bobby Jones also collecting it in its inaugural year of 1930. The Little family donated the trophy to the USGA Museum in Far Hills, New Jersey in 2008.

Little was well known for carrying as many as 26 clubs, including seven wedges, in his bag and as such was a major influence in the USGA introducing the 14-club limit in 1938.

He was nicknamed ‘cannonball’ reflecting the huge power he was able to generate from his modest 200lb, 5ft 9” frame. However, it was not just length that made him a leading player in the 1930’s and ’40s; he also had a superb short game, was a sound putter and was an intense competitor with a strong mind. He famously once said “It is impossible to outplay an opponent you cannot out think.”

Little turned professional in April 1936. At the time the U.S. PGA had a rule which meant that new pros had to serve a 5 year apprenticeship at a golf club before they could take up full membership so his playing opportunities, when he was 25-30 and in his prime, were limited.

Thankfully his stellar amateur career meant he was one of the first pros to receive significant commercial endorsements. The PGA’s rules also meant he could take up an invitation to join the Spalding “Keystones of Golf” exhibition tour alongside Bobby Jones, Horton Smith and Jimmy Thompson. In 1936-39 Little calculated that he travelled over 300,000 miles and played around 725 rounds of exhibition golf.

Lawson Little Wine Advertisment

The highlight of his pro career was his 1940 victory at the U.S. Open Championship when he overcame Gene Sarazen in an 18 hole play-off after both players had finished on 287 (-1).

He won a total of eight PGA Tour titles, including the Canadian Open (1936) and the Los Angeles Open (1940). Perhaps unfairly his professional career is considered a disappointment largely because of the high expectations that most people held for him at the time.

Between 1935 and 1957 Little played in 18 U.S. Masters finishing in the top 10 seven times. His best finish was a tied 3rd in 1939. He was the low amateur in 1935 when he finished 6th.

Little played in The Open in 1935, 1939, 1946 and 1948. On the back of his 1935 Amateur win he finished tied 4th, the low amateur, at Muirfield. His next best finish was 10th at St. Andrews in 1946.

Lawson and Dorothy Little With The U.S. Open Trophy in 1940 (Photo: The Golf Auction)

The onset of World War II, where Little served in the U.S. Navy and played numerous Red Cross exhibition games, obviously impacted his pro career. With many major championships cancelled it is said his interest in golf waned with investments in stocks and shares increasingly taking up more of his time.

With The Ryder Cup missing four matches between 1937 and 1947 one of the best match players of all time sadly never had an opportunity to make his mark in this contest.

Little married Dorothy Hurd in 1936 and the couple had four children, Linda, Sandra, Sonya and William Lawson III. Lawson Little III briefly played on the PGA Tour before becoming the club professional and then president of Quail Lodge & Golf Club in Carmel Valley for over 35 years. Like his father he died prematurely in June 2015, aged 67.

Lawson Little Jr was just 57 when he died of a heart attack on 1st February 1968 at his home alongside the first hole at Pebble Beach in California. He had started to drink heavily in the early 1950’s and this inevitably took it’s toll on his health in middle age.

He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1980 but despite this remains one of the least known and most under-appreciated golfers in the history of the game.

Lawson Little Mac Cartoon Celebrating His Amateur Championship Wins (Photo: Pure Golf Auctions)

Note ¹ – 1934 and 1935 Match Play Championship Results

1934 Walker Cup Match – St. Andrews (2 games)
Foursomes W (with Johnny Goodman) 8&6 v. Roger Wethered & Cyril Tolley
Singles W  6&5 v. Cyril Tolley 

1934 Amateur Championship – Prestwick GC (8 games)
Rd1 W 3&1 v. RW Ripley (Banstead Downs) 
Rd2 W 5&3 v. FL Rankin (Sunningdale)
Rd3 W 3&2 v. EA McRuvie (Innerleven)
Rd4 W 3&2 v. LOM Munn (Royal Cinque Ports)
Rd5 W 4&3 v. GB Peters (Fereneze)
QF W 4&2 v. TA Bourn (Sunningdale)
SF W 20th Hole v. LG Garnett (Addington)
Final W 14&13 v. J Wallace (Troon Portland)

The American Walker Cup team were scheduled to sail home from Liverpool on the evening of the 1934 Amateur final. Thankfully The R&A arranged for the Final to start earlier and for the ship to sail at midnight so Lawson could compete and then travel south. As it happened Lawson’s play was so good – he made twelve 3’s in the 23 holes played – that they probably needn’t have worried.

1934 U.S. Amateur – The Country Club, Brookline (8 games)
Final W 8&7 v. David Goldman

1935 Amateur Championship – Royal Lytham & St. Anne’s (8 games)
Rd1 W 1 Hole v. TH Parker (Fairhaven)
Rd2 W 5&3 v. EM Smith (Royal St. George’s)
Rd3 W 4&3 v. JP Zacharias (Formby)
Rd4 W 2&1 v. HG McCallum (Troon)
Rd5 W 2 Holes v. JL Black (Rhos on Sea) 
QF W 6&4 v. GLQ Henriques (Cavendish) 
SF W 3&2 v. R Sweeny Jr (Prince’s)
Final W 1 Hole v. Dr. W Tweddell (Stourbridge) 

Lawson played poorly during most of this Championship but enjoyed good fortune with a friendly draw and timely poor play from his opponents. In Rd 1 he shot 80 so was lucky to progress against a local player who knew Lytham well. McCallum three putted two late holes to hand Little a win in Rd 4. In Rd 5 the American recorded an air shot in a bunker on the 16th and in his Semi-Final he shot 40 on the front nine. Little led the Final 3Up at lunch but having returned to his hotel in the break returned late and preceded to lose the first two holes of the afternoon 18. Tweddell achieved parity by the 12th but a win with par on the 15th proved enough for the American to hold on as both players parred in.  

1935 U.S. Amateur – The Country Club, Cleveland (8 games)
Final W 4&2 v. Walter Emery

Mark Eley.

Copyright © 2014-2019, Mark Eley. All rights reserved.

European Tour Q-School – 2019 Second Stage Preview & Results

30th October 2019 (Updated – 11th November 2019)

The focus of this article is SECOND STAGE QUALIFYING which started on Thursday 7th November at Alenda Golf, Club de Golf Bonmont, Desert Springs GC and Las Colinas G&CC, all in Spain.

My interest primarily lies with all of the amateurs, Great British and Irish (GB&I) professionals, First Stage Qualifying medalists and a few other overseas ‘players of interest’.

The four competitions were played concurrently over 72 holes with no cut. The Alenda and Bonmont events required an extra day to complete due to high winds.

325 players started Second Stage with 93 (28.6%) of these hailing from Great Britain and Ireland (GB&I). 18 players competed as amateurs.

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A total of 79 qualifying spots were allocated to Second Stage by the European Tour this year. 

3 alternates were also determined from each site to deal with any subsequent withdrawals from Final Stage.

23 GB&I players out of the 93 competing progressed to Final Stage which starts later this week.

Bjarki PETURSSON (ISL) was the only amateur to progress from Second Stage. Having come through the First Stage qualifier at Fleesensee in Germany he finished tied 8th at Golf Bonmont to earn his shot at the big time.

Interestingly 95 qualifying places were made available for Second Stage in 2018. This was because only 61 players were exempt into Final Stage last year whereas the number in 2019 was originally estimated at 77.

____________________________________________

Here are the results from the four European Tour Second Stage Q-School events with my selected players listed with their previous 2019 Q-School performances also shown in italics: –

1. ALENDA GOLF, ALICANTE – 6,843 yards, Par 72

Click here for the full Alenda – RESULTS

Qualifiers – 20 spots
Alternates – 3 (3rd, 7th and 11th) 

Entries – 81 players (+ 2 WD’s before play started) with 4 amateurs

Qualified
Jarand Ekelund ARNOY (NOR) -11 WINNER – 1st Stage Stoke by Nayland, England
Tom GANDY (IoM) -6 3rd – 1st Stage Hardelot, France
David DIXON (ENG) -4 T4
Jordan WRISDALE (ENG) -4 T4
Ben HUTCHINSON (ENG) TURNED PRO 9/19 -3 T7 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Niall KEARNEY (IRE) -1 T15
Toby TREE (ENG) -1 T15
Daniel GAVINS (ENG) -1 T15

Not-Qualified
Matt FORD (ENG) +1 T23
Max ORRIN (ENG) +2 T26
Jordan GIBB (ENG) +3 T29
Rhys DAVIES (WAL) +5 T37
Paul MADDY (ENG) +5 T37
David LANGLEY (ENG) TURNED PRO 9/19 +6 T40 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Harrison ENDYCOTT (AUS) +6 T40
Harry ELLIS (ENG) +6 T40 – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf, Austria
Jamie MOUL (ENG) +8 T47
Luke DONNELLY (IRE) +12 56th
Ronan MULLARNEY (IRE) AM +13 T57 – 1st Stage Bom Sucesso, Portugal
Joe MACILWRAITH (ENG) AM +16 T59 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Brandon DIETZEL (GER) AM +22 61st – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf, Austria
Samuel ROBERTSHAWE (ENG) – WD after Rd 3 (+5)
Richard MANSELL (ENG) WD after Rd 3 (+6)
Bradley NEIL (SCO) WD after Rd 3 (+6)
Daniel BRENNAN (IRE) WD after Rd 3 (+9)
Kris NICOL (SCO) WD after Rd 3 (+10)
Chris LLOYD (ENG) WD after Rd 2 (+4)
Hugo BERNARD (CAN) WD after Rd 2 (+11) – 1st Stage Hardelot, France
Scott HENRY (SCO) WD after Rd 2 (+11)
Sam BROADHURST (ENG) AM WD after Rd 2 (+13) – 1st Stage The Players Club, England
Chris DOAK (SCO) WD after Rd 2 (+14)
Nick MCCARTHY (ENG) WD before Rd 1

2 players, Magnus ATLEVI (SWE) and Nick MCCARTHY (ENG), withdrew from the Alenda qualifier prior to play commencing on Day 1 and are therefore not included in the 325 number above.

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2. CLUB DE GOLF BONMONT, TARRAGONA – 6,976 yards, Par 72

Click here for the full Bonmont – RESULTS

Qualifiers – 19 spots
Alternates – 3 (1st, 5th and 9th)

Entries – 80 players with 5 amateurs

Qualified
Aron ZEMMER (ITA) -12 WINNER – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy
Jonathan CALDWELL (NI) -9 3rd
David MICHELUZZI (AUS) TURNED PRO 10/19 -7 T5
Lauri RUUSKA (FIN) -7 T5 – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany WINNER
Bjarki PETURSSON (ISL) AM -5 T8 – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany
Chris CANNON (ENG) -4 T12
Dave COUPLAND (ENG) -4 T12
Robin DAWSON (IRE) -4 T12
Will ENEFER (ENG) -4 T12 – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany
Jonathan THOMSON (ENG) -4 T12

Not-Qualified
Jack DAVIDSON (WAL) -1 T22 – 1st Stage Stoke-by-Nayland, England WINNER
Matthew NIXON (ENG) -1 T22
Ryan LUMSDEN (SCO) TURNED PRO 9/19 -1 T22 – 1st Stage The Players Club, England
Justin HICKS (USA) Ev T29 – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy CO–WINNER
Bradley MOORE (ENG) Ev T29
John PARRY (ENG) Ev T29
Stefano MAZZOLI (ITA) +1 36th – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy
William HARROLD (ENG) +3 T39
Ben JONES (ENG) AM +4 41st – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Sam LOCKE (SCO) +6 T44 – 1st Stage Hardelot, France WINNER
Blake COLLYER (AUS) TURNED PRO 9/19 +6 T44 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
David HAGUE (ENG) AM +8 T50 – 1st Stage Stoke-by-Nayland, England
Jannik DE BRUYN (GER) AM +10 53rd – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany
Daniel HILLIER (NZL) TURNED PRO 9/19 +11 T54 – 1st Stage The Players Club, England WINNER
John HENRY (SCO) +11 T54
Tyler HOGARTY (IRE) +12 T58
Stuart MANLEY (WAL) WD after Rd 3 (Ev)
Chris GANE (ENG) WD after Rd 3 (+3)
Laurie OWEN (ENG) AM WD after Rd 3 (+6) – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Michael BULLEN (ENG) WD after Rd 3 (+8)
Mitch WAITE (ENG) WD after Rd 3 (+15) – 1st Stage The Players Club, England
Chris HANSON (ENG) WD after Rd 2 (+2)
Ruaidhri MCGEE (IRE) WD after Rd 2 (+3)

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3. DESERT SPRINGS GOLF CLUB, ALMERÍA – 6,745 yards, Par 72

Click here for the full Desert Springs – RESULTS

Qualifiers – 20 spots
Alternates – 3 (4th, 8th and 12th)

Entries – 81 players with 4 amateurs

Qualified
Blake WINDRED (AUS) TURNED PRO 10/19 -10 WINNER
Daniel YOUNG (SCO) -2 T7
Ben BRISCOE (WAL) Ev T11 – 1st Stage Arlandastad, Sweden
Louis HIRST (ENG) Ev T11
Scott GREGORY (ENG) +1 16th
Garrick PORTEOUS (ENG) +2 T17 after 6 for 4 play-off

Not-Qualified
Lukas LIPOLD (AUT) TURNED PRO 9/19 +3 T23 – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf, Austria
Jamie RUTHERFORD (ENG) +3 T23
Marc HAMMER (GER) AM +3 T23 – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy
Joshua MCMAHON (ENG) TURNED PRO 9/19 +4 T28 – 1st Stage Stoke-by-Nayland, England
Thriston LAWRENCE (RSA) +7 T42 – 1st Stage Stoke-by-Nayland, England
Rodoldfo CAZAUBON JNR (MEX) +8 T46 – 1st Stage Bom Sucesso, Portugal WINNER
Jesper KENNEGARD (SWE) +8 T46 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England WINNER
Jeong Weon KO (FRA) AM +9 51st – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy
Runar ARNORSSON (ISL) AM +10 T52 – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany
Jack HARRISON (ENG) +10 T52
Joe DEAN (ENG) +11 T55
David BOOTE (WAL) +11 T55
David CAREY (IRL) +11 T55 – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy CO-WINNER
Paul FERRIER (SCO) +12 T58
Brett BEAZANT (ENG) +14 T63
Oliver CLARKE (ENG) +18 69th – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany
Alex HIETALA (FIN) AM +21 T71 – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf, Austria
Alfie PLANT (ENG) WD after Rd 3 (+11)
Etienne BRAULT (CAN) TURNED PRO 9/19 WD after Rd 3 (+15) – 1st Stage Hardelot, France (+15)
Kenneth FERRIE (ENG) WD after Rd 1 (+2)

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4. LAS COLINAS GOLF & COUNTRY CLUB, ALICANTE – 6,974 yards, Par 71

Click here for the full Las Colinas – RESULTS

Qualifiers – 20 spots
Alternates – 3 (2nd, 6th and 10th)

Entries – 83 players with 5 amateurs

Qualified
Jimmy JONES (CAN) -8 WINNER
Wilco NIENABER (RSA) TURNED PRO 7/19 -7 2nd – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Craig HOWIE (SCO) -5 3rd – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf, Austria
Thomas ROSENMÜLLER (GER) TURNED PRO 10/19 -2 T6 – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf, Austria
Gary KING (ENG) -2 T6
Marcus ARMITAGE (ENG) -1 T9
Björn HELLGREN (SWE) -1 T9 – 1st Stage Arlandastad, Sweden WINNER
Michael HOEY (N.I.) Ev T14
Euan WALKER (SCO) TURNED PRO 9/19 Ev T14

Not-Qualified
Andreas HILLERSBORG (DEN) AM +2 T24 – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany
James ALLAN (ENG) +2 T24 – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy
Jamie DICK (ENG) +3 T28 – 1st Stage Stoke-by-Nayland, England
Jack AYRES (ENG) +3 T28
Conor O’ROURKE (IRL) +3 T28 – 1st Stage Bogogno, Italy
Todd CLEMENTS (ENG) +4 T32
Duncan STEWART (SCO) +4 T32
Nathan KIMSEY (ENG) +5 T34
Bailey GILL (ENG) TURNED PRO 9/19 +9 T48 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Jake BURNAGE (ENG) TURNED PRO 9/19 +9 T48 – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Craig ROSS (SCO) +9 T48
Ryan EVANS (ENG) +10 T52
Yannik EMMERT (GER) AM +10 T52 – 1st Stage Fleesensee, Germany
Steve SURRY (ENG) +11 T55
Alex CHRISTIE (ENG) AM +12 T60 – 1st Stage Hardelot, France
Kyle MICHEL (AUS) TURNED PRO 11/19 +12 T60 – 1st Stage The Players Club, England
Marcus HELLIGKILDE (DEN) +14 63rd – 1st Stage Ebreichsdorf, Austria WINNER
JR GALBRAITH (NI) +15 64th – 1st Stage Frilford Heath, England
Ben TALBOT (ENG) +16 T65
Robin WILLIAMS (ENG) AM +18 T69 – 1st Stage Stoke-by-Nayland, England
Tom MURRAY (ENG) WD after Rd 3 (+9)
Jack SOUTH (ENG) WD after Rd 3 (+11)
Haider HUSSAIN (ENG) AM WD after Rd 3 (+18) – 1st Stage The Players Club, England
Marco PENGE (ENG) WD after Rd 2 (+9) – 1st Stage Hardelot, France
Andrew WILSON (ENG) WD after Rd 1 (+7)

img_9 991

108 holes will now be played at Lumine GC between 15-20 November in Final Stage Qualifying with the Top 25 finishers securing a European Tour card for the 2019/20 season.

____________________________________________

THE 2019 EUROPEAN TOUR QUALIFYING SCHOOL SERIES

The European Tour Qualifying School was first played in 1976, four years after the European Tour was founded. What started out as a 72 hole sprint has grown into potentially a 252 hole marathon.

Nowadays there are three stages of stroke play qualifying, First, Second and Final.

The 2019 European Tour Q-School entrance fee is £1,800 or €2,030 (2018: €2,000).

Some entrants are exempted straight into Second Stage or Final Stage based on their past results and ranking.

First Stage

First Stage consisted of nine 72 hole stroke play qualifying events split into five Sections, A, B, C, D and E.

A total of 842 players contested First Stage Qualifying this year with 185 (22%) progressing to Second Stage. 83 of these were amateurs with a further 17 newly turned professionals. Of the First Stage qualifiers 22 started out as amateurs.

Around 20% of each field, between 15-30 players, progress from each event. The actual number of places are confirmed after all the players have teed off on Day 1.

A 54-hole cut, where players need to be within 7 shots of the final allocated qualifying place, reduces the field for the final round. Ties for the final qualifying place at the end of play proceed too.

For a recap on the nine First Stage competitions played between 3rd September and 12th October please read my earlier article – European Tour Q-School – 2019 First Stage Preview & Results

Second Stage

The Second Qualifying Stage consisted of four separate 72-hole events played at Alenda Golf, Club de Golf Bonmont, Desert Springs GC and Las Colinas G&CC, all in Spain, concurrently on 7th-10th November 2019. The Alenda and Bonmont events required a fifth day due to strong winds.

183 of the 185 First Stage qualifiers were joined at Second Stage by those players who were exempt from the preliminary round due to their performances on the 2019 European Tour, Challenge Tour and other feeder / satellite tours.

The two missing First Stage qualifiers were, James NICHOLAS (USA) AM (1st Stage Bom Sucesso, Portugal) and Jordan NIEBRUGGE (USA) (1st Stage, Stoke-by-Nayland, England), who withdrew from the European Tour Qualifying Series after also qualifying for the Second Stage of the Korn Ferry Qualifying Series. Their two US qualifiers were played on 5th-8th November so understandably they chose to play in these. One would have hoped the two Tours could have managed their diaries a little bit better to avoid such clashes.

Exemptions into Second Stage were also given to the leading five Q-School entrants as at 21st August 2019, up to a limit of 15th place, in the Men’s World Amateur Golf Ranking. As a result of this David MICHELUZZI (AUS) and Euan WALKER (SCO) were both exempted into Second Stage this year.

Around 25% of each field, normally 20-30 players, progress from each event. The actual number of places are confirmed after all the players have teed off on Day 1 of each event.

Final Stage

The Final Qualifying Stage consists of 108 holes on the Lakes and Hills Courses at Lumine GC in Tarragona, Spain. Lumine replaced PGA Catalunya Resort in 2017 and will be hosting Final Stage for the second consecutive year. This competition will be played on 15th-20th November 2019.

The leading 25 players (plus those tied for 25th place) in the Final Stage competition will earn Full Membership of The European and Challenge Tours for the 2019 season. On average over the last 5 years the medalist has received 29 European Tour starts whilst the 25th qualifier has garnered 19. Every finishing place matters.

Those who make the 72 hole cut but finish outside the Top 25 will also earn a membership category on the European Challenge Tour.

ME.

Copyright © 2014-2019, Mark Eley. All rights reserved.

E. Harvie Ward Jr.

18th October 2019

The story of Harvie Ward is something of a rollercoaster – great golfing achievements followed by public humiliation and self destruction before thankfully redemption and a happy ending.

Ward’s place in golfing history is founded upon him being a past winner of both the Amateur (1952) and U.S. Amateur (1955 & ’56) Championships. He is just one of 13 golfers to have achieved this feat.

Edward Harvie Ward Jr. was born on 8th December 1925 in Tarboro, North Carolina. He was a charismatic man with Hollywood good looks who lived life to the full.

img_2150

Harvie Ward at the 1948 North & South Championship (Photo: The Tufts Archive)

Ward was a successful junior and quickly became one of the U.S.’s leading amateur golfers. He was a natural who seemed to find the game relatively easy. He had a smooth three quarter length swing and an impeccable short game. He played aggressively but normally in a relaxed fashion, although when the mood took him he could also reveal a steely determination to win. This made him a popular figure amongst both his peers and the public. He also enjoyed the patronage of Bobby Jones, who saw him as his heir apparent, which only added to his appeal.

Herb Warren Wind, the American golf writer, called Ward “the most talented amateur of the decade”. In addition to his majors Ward also won the 1948 North and South Amateur, the 1949 NCAA Division I Individual Championship, representing the University of North Carolina where he earned a degree in Economics, and the 1954 Canadian Amateur.

His breakthrough win came in his first Amateur Championship in 1952 where he beat his American rival Frank Stranahan 6&5. He was runner-up in 1953 with Joe Carr getting the better of him in that year’s final.

879C74F4-3CD9-4ABC-83A3-6FF62C2CE510_1_201_a

Harvie Ward with the Amateur trophy in 1952 (Photo: Old Sports Auctions) 

He played on the USA’s Walker Cup teams of 1953, 1955 and 1959 and won all six of his 36 hole games. The highlights were a 9&8 foursomes win alongside Jack Westland against John Langley and Arthur Perowne in 1953, a 6&5 singles win against Ronnie White in 1955 and another 9&8 singles win in 1959 against Guy Wolstenholme.

Ward had entered eight U.S. Amateurs before finally winning the Championship in 1955. He beat Bill Hyndman by 9&8 at the Country Club of Virginia in Richmond. He then successfully defended the title in 1956 at Knollwood Club, near Chicago overcoming Charles Kocsis 5&4.

He was prevented from going for a hat trick of U.S. Amateur’s (and from playing in that year’s Walker Cup match) when his amateur status was revoked for 12 months by the USGA on 7th June 1957. Ward’s employer Eddie Lowery, coincidentally caddie for Francis Ouimet when he won the 1913 U.S. Open, became embroiled in a tax investigation which exposed the fact that he had paid the golfer expenses to support his participation in various amateur events. As Ward was the reigning U.S. Amateur champion and Lowery a current member of the USGA Executive Committee it was not a matter that could simply be ignored as many other amateur status cases seemed to be at that time.

The reinstated Ward won his first round match in the 1958 U.S. Amateur taking his total to 17 consecutive victories in the Championship. This broke W. Lawson Little’s previous record of 16 wins in 1934 and 1935 when he also won the Championship two years running. Tiger Woods hat trick of wins in 1994-95-96 set a new mark of 18 which is unlikely to ever be beaten.

Peaking in a very different era to the one we see today Ward opted for a flexible career in business that allowed him to continue playing amateur golf whenever he wished to. He was initially a stockbroker in Atlanta before moving to San Francisco where he was a car salesman.

In total Ward played in 11 Masters as an amateur from 1948-66, finishing in the top 24 four times. His best finish of 4th came in 1957. He was only one behind Sam Snead with 18 holes to play before Doug Ford shot a final round 66 to come through for a 3-shot win. Jones and Roberts were appalled at the treatment of Ward by the USGA and encouraged him to play in the 1958 Masters despite his ongoing ban from USGA events. Sadly his game wasn’t up to the challenge and he missed the cut. He wouldn’t play at Augusta again until his final Masters in 1966.

Ward competed in eight U.S. Opens; his best finish being sixth in 1955.

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Suzanne and Harvie Ward with the U.S. Amateur trophy (Photo: Getty Images)

Harvie Ward was one of the four participants in ‘The Greatest Match Ever Played’, contested on 11th January 1956 at Cypress Point G.C. The match was arranged between Lowery and fellow millionaire George Coleman at a pre Crosby Pro-Am Tournament cocktail party. “My two amateurs (Ken Venturi and Ward were both ‘employed’ at his Van Etta Motors car dealership business) can beat any two pros in the world. I’ll put ten thousand dollars on it.” bragged Lowery. Coleman’s response was “I’ll get Nelson and Hogan and we’ll play tomorrow.” The full story of ‘The Match’, was told in a book by Mark Frost (2007). The Pros won by 1-hole with Hogan reportedly shooting 63 (-9), Venturi 65, Ward 67 and the by then 10 year retired Nelson 67.

The 1957 ban over his amateur status had a profound impact on Ward’s life. His friendship with Lowery, who he had trusted with his finances, collapsed and he left his role at Van Etta shortly afterwards. He started to drink heavily and became something of a womaniser both of which led to the collapse of his three year old marriage to Suzanne, the couple having also adopted two children.

He successfully sought his reinstatement as an amateur via the USGA in May 1958 but much of his golfing spark had gone and he never really rediscovered his best from. With Arnold Palmer making waves in the professional game and a dominating Jack Nicklaus now emerging on the amateur side America’s golfing eyes had started to look elsewhere for their next hero. It took Ward nearly 20 years, including two more marriages, to get over how his life had changed from the heady days of the early 1950’s and he played little golf during this period of his life.  

Ward eventually turned professional in 1974 to try and earn a living and to simply get back on track. He was 48 by then and obviously was unable to compete with the youngsters on the mini-tours let alone the PGA Tour. Instead he returned to his native North Carolina to become head golf professional at Foxfire Country Club. As he helped ordinary golfers improve he gradually started to find his feet again. He went on to work at Grand Cypress Golf Club in Orlando at the invitation of the designer Jack Nicklaus.

Ward even started to play a few events on the PGA Senior Tour at this time. The highlight of this renaissance was his win at the 1980 Senior Open, the year before it became an official USGA Championship.

He subsequently worked at Interlachen Golf Club in Winter Park, Florida before moving back home to the Pinehurst area in 1989 where he further cemented his reputation as a teaching professional. He was named “Teacher of the Year” by the PGA in 1990 during a 15 year career at Pine Needles Lodge & Country Club in Southern Pines. Notably Payne Stewart turned to Ward after his own dad, and only coach up until that point, had died. 

Harvie Ward died at his home in Pinehurst, North Carolina on 4th September 2004, aged 78, having previously been diagnosed with advanced lung cancer. He was survived by his fourth wife Joanne who he had met 20 years earlier during his time in Orlando.

Ward is rightly considered one of the best amateur golfers of all time but one can not help but think that is potential was ultimately not fulfilled.

ME.

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