European Tour Destinations are all world class golf venues offering a comprehensive range of facilities and services to their members and guests. Their identity is closely aligned to The European Tour, creating a unique partnership which ensures that all guests can enjoy the outstanding customer experience to be expected from the family of one of the game’s foremost organisations.
Our Destination portfolio comprises Championship venues in Dubai, England, Austria, France, Germany, Spain, Thailand and The Netherlands which regularly host events on The European Tour International Schedule, whether main Tour, Senior Tour, Challenge Tour or Qualifying School.
Ryder Cup stars head to Le Golf NationalRyder Cup stars head to Le Golf NationalThe next venue to host a Ryder Cup on European soil will take centre stage this week, as seven of the stars from the last biennial contest compete in the Alstom Open de France at Le Golf National.
Defending champion Graeme McDowell will be joined by his Gleneagles team-mates Thomas Bjørn, Jamie Donaldson, Victor Dubuisson, Stephen Gallacher, Martin Kaymer and Lee Westwood for the 99th edition of the tournament, which is continental Europe’s oldest national Open.
McDowell is bidding for a hat-trick of victories, having first won the title by four strokes from Richard Sterne in 2013 before successfully defending it last year, when he finished a shot clear of American Kevin Stadler and Thailand’s Thongchai Jaidee.
The Northern Irishman won all three of his matches at The 2014 Ryder Cup and his partner for two of those, Frenchman Dubuisson, will lead the home hopes over the Albatros course which will host the contest against the United States in 2018.
Dubuisson returns home following a top 20 finish in last week’s BMW International Open in Germany. He will be hoping to become the first Frenchman since Thomas Levet in 2011 to win his home Open.
Kaymer is also a former winner at Le Golf National, having defeated team-mate Westwood in a play-off in 2009, and he will be aiming to bounce back from missing the cut in the US Open and in Munich last week.
In addition to Dubuisson, there is a strong looking home challenge, which includes Gary Stal, already a winner on The 2015 Race to Dubai in the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship, and Alexander Levy, who won twice in 2014.
Le Golf National, on the outskirts of the French capital Paris, is a European Tour Destination and member venue of The European Tour Properties network.
Terre Blanche-based Langasque wins Amateur ChampionshipTerre Blanche-based Langasque wins Amateur Championship
Frenchman Romain Langasque saw off the challenge of Scotland’s Grant Forrest to win the 120th Amateur Championship at Carnoustie last week.
Langasque was in commanding form as he won the 36-hole final by 4 and 2 and with it secured a place in next month’s 144th Open Championship at St Andrews, a place in next year’s US Open at Oakmont and an invitation to the 2016 Masters Tournament.
The 20 year old Frenchman, who is a member of the French Federation's Pole Francais - based at European Tour Destination Terre Blanche where he works with the European Tour Performance Institute, sealed the win on the par three 34th hole when Forrest conceded the hole and the match after his tee shot had gone through the back of the green and his chip coming back went past the hole with Langasque facing a 10ft birdie putt.
Langasque becomes just the third Frenchman to win the Amateur Championship after Philippe Ploujoux in 1981 and Julien Guerrier in 2006.
Langasque said: “This is just a dream for me. It is just incredible that I am going to play at St Andrews in one month’s time for The Open.
“When I came here I played my first practice round and played really well at Panmure maybe six or seven-under-par and then when I played my practice round here at Carnoustie I was maybe six or seven over so when it came to the first round I just tried to do my best on every shot.
“I played ok for the first two rounds and then the more the competition advanced the more I played well. This morning was my best round of the championship and I played really well.”
London Golf Club Summer SpecialLondon Golf Club Summer Special
Visit our European Tour Destination in the heart of the "Garden of England", offering a traditional English breakfast on arrival and 18 holes on the Championship International course, home of the 2014 Volvo World Match Play Championship.
Wood shines at Diamond Country ClubWood shines at Diamond Country Club
Chris Wood produced a flawless final round to claim his second European Tour title with a two shot triumph at the Lyoness Open Powered by Greenfinity at Diamond Country Club.
The Englishman, starting five shots off the pace, carded an immaculate 67 to secure his first victory since winning the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters in 2013.
Brilliant off the tee and clinical with the putter, he collected five birdies to finish ahead of Rafa Cabrera-Bello on 15 under.
Wood, who won a BMW i8 for a hole-in-one en route to a fourth-place finish at the recent BMW PGA Championship, said: “It’s fantastic to win. It was a long winter sitting at home with a cast on my wrist getting frustrated and just wanting to be out here playing and competing.
“I have been playing well the last few weeks so I felt that a victory was coming but until the moment comes you always think when will it come? Chris Wood
“I played great all week and today especially. I felt that if I could beat 68 today I would have an outside chance and obviously things went my way and 67 was good enough.
“People will probably look at the result and think it was fairly straightforward but I needed to play well today and for a few other things to go my way and thankfully it all came together for me.
“I injured my wrist playing tennis last October and had to rest for five months. I came back in March and finished third in Morocco which I thought would give me a lot of confidence but then I didn’t get the results after that and played quite poorly for a few weeks. But the last month I have felt I was playing well enough to win so it has been coming.
“It has been a while since the win in Qatar but let me tell you it feels a lot better to say I am a two-time winner on Tour – it is a very special feeling to win out here so I am looking forward to celebrating this one.”
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Despite starting and finishing strongly, Cabrera-Bello's hopes were dashed when he dropped three consecutive shots from the ninth, meaning he had to settle for a level par 72.
Gregory Bourdy had played excellently for the first three days, but the pressure of the final round affected his performance as he suffered a double bogey and five bogies in a six over par 78.
Bourdy's overnight two shot advantage evaporated just three holes in after the Frenchman failed to recover from finding the water and double bogeyed the second and Cabrera-Bello birdied the next.
Bourdy had led or co-led for 48 holes before being overtaken by the Spaniard on the seventh, when the former had problems in the trees and rough, but Cabrera-Bello's troubles started either side of the turn.
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The first of the latter's three successive errors arrived on the ninth and when he and Bourdy both dropped shots on the 11th, the Frenchman again locating the drink from the tee, Wood moved into a one shot lead.
Although Cabrera-Bello made a late surge by matching Wood with back-to-back birdies from the 15th, the 27 year old completed victory.
Wood's fellow countrymen Robert Rock, with a six under par 66, Robert Dinwiddie and Matthew Fitzpatrick all finished on ten under.
Bourdy's disappointing round meant he was one of three players to end six shots off the pace.
German boys and girls triumph at international youth tournamentGerman boys and girls triumph at international youth tournament
The 12th Allianz German Boys & Girls Open hosted by European Tour Destination Golf Club St. Leon-Rot saw two young German athletes triumph from an impressive field of 153 juniors from 18 different countries, with more than 97% of the players boasting a plus handicap.
The weekend event, played in temperatures of up to 33°C, was won by Leonie Harm (Golf Club St. Leon-Rot/-11) and Thomas Rosenmüller (GC München Eichenried/ -10).
After the traditional players “big night”, with a welcome from Charlie Hull, who in 2013 became the youngest female professional to compete in The Solheim Cup, the players took to the course in front of an impressive crowd of spectators.
The start of the final day saw Hollie Muse from England at the top of the leaderboard, but after a strong start Hollie slipped to a final round three-over-par 75, leaving a tussle for first place between Esther Henseleit (Hamburger GC / -10) and eventual champion, Leonie.
In the boys’ competition, Thomas Rosenmüller took the lead from the start and won with a final round 70 over the St. Leon course, with a total of 206 strokes.
In the nations’ competition the German girls (Leonie Harm, Esther Henseleit and Alexandra Förstling) came in first with a total of 275 shots and their male compatriots (Thomas Rosenmüller, Max Schmitt and Michael Hirmer) winning with a final score of 277.
The event is supported by the German Golf Association (Deutscher Golf Verband) and proud long-standing title sponsor Allianz.
Inside Diamond Country Club with Bernd WiesbergerInside Diamond Country Club with Bernd Wiesberger
By Will Pearson, europeantour.com
at Diamond Country Club
Ahead of the Lyoness Open Powered by Greenfinity, europeantour.com chatted to former winner and home favourite Bernd Wiesberger to assess the challenges posed by the stunning, dangerous host venue, Diamond Country Club.
Situated 60 kilometres west of the capital Vienna, on the outskirts of Atzenbrugg, Diamond Country Club lies resplendent in Austria’s picturesque, lush lowlands.
Opened in 2000 and designed by renowned British architect Jeremy Pern, the course measures a not insignificant 7,417 yards and plays to a par of 72. In recent years, prolific European Tour winner and now Vienna resident Miguel Angel Jimenez has helped remodel a number of holes – not least the signature par four eighth.
In 2013, the course was also bestowed the honour of being named a Destination in the Tour’s portfolio of world-class European Tour Properties and this spring added the luxurious Diamond Apartment Hotel, which offers 33 apartment-style rooms and two exclusive master suites, thus solidifying its status as a preeminent, all-encompassing resort.
Scenic and challenging in equal measure, with vast swathes of water and cavernous bunkers, the Diamond Championship Course this week hosts Austria’s national Open for a sixth successive year and it has a been a period in which the country’s number one player has flourished.
Along with Wiesberger’s win here back in 2012, the 29 year old also finished runner-up here 12 months ago to Mikael Lundberg, beaten only in a sudden-death play-off with the Swede, tied 14th in his defence in 2013 and tied fifth back in 2011.
Safe to say, then, that Bernd sparkles on the Diamond.
“I think because it is a course where I have played well and have always had a lot of support that helped make me feel a bit more comfortable and helped me feel a bit more competitive,” said Wiesberger, who has already amassed more than €1million this season and is flying high at fifth in The Race to Dubai currently.
“Of course I really want to win every tournament, every week, but that is elevated even further at your home Open, which is obviously on anyone’s bucket list as a golfer.
“I’m sure if you asked Rory (McIlroy) he would say he’d love to win the Irish Open, or if you asked Lee (Westwood) he’d say he’d love to win at Wentworth and it’s no different for me.
“Yes, I have one already but it would be nice to get at least another couple. Hopefully more to come!”
“I think there are always courses that set up well for your game and for your eye and this is mine,” continued Wiesberger, who hails from the country’s capital. “This is definitely one where I see most of the tee shots and feel comfortable which is important because the rough is quite tough to control the ball from and the greens are quite firm so it’s key to find the fairways.
“I think I’ve had success because I have been able to do just that mostly and take advantage of the scoring holes.
“In general it’s a really good test and definitely a course I very much enjoy playing.”
“There have been a lot of changes and improvements to the course in recent years and we’ve seen some of those on the greens. The new parts on certain ones – like the 18th and ninth – have seen them grow into quite big putting surfaces now.
“There are specific areas of all the greens that you need to hit to to give yourself a chance. They are not that slopey, but moderately undulating and the spots you need to hit to are pretty small so accuracy is important.”
When you arrive at Diamond Country Club, one of the first things you notice is the abundance of water at every turn. The wet stuff comes into play on no fewer than 13 holes on the championship layout and Wiesberger says that avoiding a watery grave is paramount.
“A lot of the course’s defences are built around the water hazards,” the World Number 37 reflected. “It forces you to play away from the perfect lines a bit and the shortest ways of getting to the green.
“They are trying to build all sorts of hazards into the course to make it to tricky and with such prominent water on even the first two holes it makes you think straight away.”
The Opening Stretch
“On the weekend certainly, you definitely want to get off to a fast start with a reachable par five, a short-ish par four on the third and another reachable par five on the fourth. Those are three really good chances you have early in your round.”
Around The Turn
“Now the nines have been turned around, there is a really tricky part in the middle of the round from eight through to 13 where there are some long par fours and tough to score and easy to lose some holes. You have to be very careful there – if you can come out of there with a couple of birdies you can gain some shots on the field.
Consecutive Par Fives
“You have to take advantage of the par fives as most of those are reachable if it’s not too windy. Unusually, we have the back-to-back par fives at 15 and 16 which can make for eagles and birdies and certainly an exciting finish!”
How it played last year
As Wiesberger attests, the par fives are where you need to make your money at Diamond Country Club with the quartet of long holes ranking the easiest four on the course last year with 24 eagles made on them in total 12 months ago.
At the opposite end of the spectrum, the par four eighth, ninth and short 14th ranked the joint-hardest in last year’s event at 4.26 and 3.26 respectively so during that mid-round period, as Wiesberger so wisely pointed out, one has to hang onto their hat.
The par three 18th - an interesting closing hole.
Saujana becomes a European Tour DestinationSaujana becomes a European Tour Destination
Saujana Golf & Country Club in Malaysia has been announced as the 15th member of the exclusive European Tour Properties network, becoming an official European Tour Destination.
It is only the third venue outside of Europe to gain European Tour Destination status and the 11th in total.
Located approximately 15km outside the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur, Saujana hosted the Malaysian Open in 1999, won by American Gerry Norquist, which entered the record books as the first event to be co-sanctioned by The European and Asian Tours.
It then hosted the tournament a further five times between 2001 and 2009, with Vijay Singh and Thongchai Jaidee among the winners, earning a reputation as one of Asia’s leading venues.
Peremba, the owners of Saujana Golf & Country Club, have promoted the Malaysian Open, through their company GlobalOne, since 2006, while they also promoted the Indonesian Open from 2006 to 2009 and the Singapore Masters in 2006 and 2007, both tournaments featuring on The European Tour International Schedule.
The brainchild of former Prime Minister YAB Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who, in 1982, initiated the creation of a government task force to set up a golf club in Kuala Lumpur to attract investors and industrialists, Saujana Golf & Country Club was cut through a former palm and rubber plantation and now has two courses – The Palm Course and Bunga Raya.
Both were originally designed by Ronald Fream, and in 2009 Bunga Raya was redesigned by Ted Parslow of Australia. The two courses are endorsed by the R&A as championship courses, and the Palm Course has been voted as the sixth toughest course in the world, while Bunga Raya was voted as the 69th best course of the world outside of the USA by Golf Digest USA.
The golf club is directly linked to two world class hotels, The Saujana Hotel Kuala Lumpur and The Club Saujana Resort which is a Small Luxury Hotel of the World. As well as the hotels, there is a spa and a selection of internationally themed restaurants.
As the 11th and newest European Tour Destination, Saujana Golf & Country Club will benefit from European Tour Properties’ focused, year-long sales, marketing and operational support, joining the 14 existing members in the European Tour Properties’ portfolio of world class venues, which includes world class facilities such as PGA Catalunya Resort in Spain, London Golf Club in England, and Terre Blanche Hotel Spa Golf Resort on the French Riviera.
In late 2013, Jumeirah Golf Estates in Dubai became the first Middle East Destination to join the network, and the expansion continued into south-east Asia earlier this year with the addition of Black Mountain Golf Club & Resort in Thailand.
George O’Grady, Chief Executive of The European Tour, said: “Our relationship with our partners Peremba and GlobalOne has been a long and fruitful one and has delivered many outstanding tournaments and winners. I would like to pay particular tribute to Tan Sri Mohd Razali Abdul Rahman who has been a true friend, partner and supporter of The European Tour over many years and can claim an important role in our international expansion.”
David MacLaren, The European Tour’s Director of Property and Venue Development, said: “We have a long-standing relationship with the owners of Saujana Golf & Country Club and one which is very important to The European Tour. Announcing Saujana as our official European Tour Destination in Malaysia is a natural extension of this association and will allow us to further develop our partnership into many new spheres. We are grateful for the ongoing support of Tan Sri Mohd Razali Abdul Rahman and his team, and look forward to Saujana becoming an important member of our network of world class venues.”
Tan Sri Mohd Razali Abdul Rahman, the Chairman of Peremba Group said: “We are proud to be promoters of European Tour sanctioned events. We are delighted that the relationship with The European Tour is progressing to a new dimension with the Saujana Golf & Country Club and The Saujana Hotels and Resorts being associated with The European Tour Properties network. We are confident that this new partnership will add value to the organisations and to the sport.
“Our relationship with The European Tour has been long and fruitful, and we look forward to many more years of this.”
For more information about Saujana Golf & Country Club, visit www.saujana.com.my.
For more information about European Tour Properties, visit www.europeantourproperties.com
A Desert Oasis by Lewine Mair - Courtesy of Global Golf PostA Desert Oasis by Lewine Mair - Courtesy of Global Golf Post
Jumeirah Golf Estates, European Tour Destination and host venue of The European Tour's season-ending finale, the DP World Tour Championship, is reviewed by golf journalist Lewine Mair.
Read the article here - courtesy of online magazine Global Golf Post.
DP World extends title sponsorship until 2020DP World extends title sponsorship until 2020
The DP World Tour Championship, Dubai - The European Tour’s glittering end-of-season tournament held in Dubai, was given a significant boost today with the news that global ports operator DP World has agreed to continue its title sponsorship for another five years.
The agreement until the 2020 season, will see DP World support the climax of The Race to Dubai, in addition to the company’s existing sponsorship of European Tour events in India, Hong Kong, China, Turkey and here at this week’s BMW PGA Championship in England.
The DP World Tour Championship – which will celebrate its seventh staging this year on the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates from November 19-22 – is already recognised globally as one of golf’s premier tournaments.
Its Roll of Honour reads like a Who’s Who of the game itself – Lee Westwood (2009), Robert Karlsson (2010), Alvaro Quiros (2011), Rory McIlroy (2012), and Henrik Stenson (2013 & 2014) – and this year’s tournament will see the top 60 players on The Race to Dubai once again battle for a share of the US$8 million tournament prize fund, with the winner taking home US$1.3 million.
In addition, the leading 15 players on The Race to Dubai at the end of the tournament will share the US$5 million Bonus Pool, with the eventual European Tour Number One pocketing US$1.25 million.
Speaking at a press conference at Wentworth Club in England, His Excellency Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem, Chairman of DP World, said: “Dubai and the UAE stand at the crossroads of world trade and this cosmopolitan location is a melting pot of talent, expertise and professionalism much like the sport of golf. We are delighted to be supporting this prestigious event to bring to Dubai the world’s best golfers and their fans.
“We chose golf as one of the main sponsorship platforms for DP World because it is one of the most popular sports worldwide and reflects the global reach of our business, connecting us with partners and customers in a variety of locations. Developing the skills of young people is also big focus area for us and we will be actively supporting the Emirates Golf Foundation to promote their youth training programmes. We are very proud to be again part of such a significant global sporting event and are delighted to be confirming our support for the DP World Tour Championship until 2020.”
George O’Grady, Chief Executive of The European Tour, said: “The support DP World has shown The European Tour has been evident right from the start of The Race to Dubai and the strength of their ongoing commitment is further evidenced with today’s announcement.
“We thank His Excellency Sultan Ahmed Bin Sulayem for his personal vision and we look forward to working with him and all his staff as we continue to make the DP World Tour Championship a fitting end to The European Tour season.”
The DP World Tour Championship is already one of Dubai’s flagship events, helping further raise its already acknowledged profile as a premier destination for prestigious global sporting events, as well as promoting Dubai as a centre of excellence for sport, tourism and trade.
The extension of DP World’s title sponsorship of the tournament through until 2020 dovetails with Dubai’s hosting of Expo 2020, an event which will see the world come to the Emirate and further enhance its goal of attracting 20 million tourists per year.
Over 55,000 spectators attended the 2014 DP World Tour Championship, a third of whom were international visitors, while the global television reach exceeded 450 million people via 40 broadcasters worldwide.
Aside from the galaxy of stars inside the ropes, the tournament venue at Jumeirah Golf Estates offered many attractions outside, including the new state-of-the-art European Tour Performance Institute, which was officially opened in November 2013.
DP World, together with the Emirates Golf Federation, will continue to utilise the ETPI as the catalyst to help grow the game in the region by fully supporting the UAE National Golf Teams training programme and the development of the game amongst boys and girls at grassroots level.
Stars of golf and football come together for Special OlympicsStars of golf and football come together for Special Olympics
Stars from the world of golf and football united at PGA Catalunya Golf Resort, a European Tour Destination, to raise funds to send 78 athletes with intellectual disabilities to represent Team Spain at the 2015 Special Olympics World Summer Games. Nineteen of those athletes are from Catalunya.
More than 20 teams signed up to play in the inaugural Special Olympics Golf Classic hosted by The 2014 Ryder Cup winning captain, Paul McGinley. Teams included football greats Johan Cruyff, Christian Karembeu and David O’Leary, golf professionals Paula Martí from Spain and Peter Lawrie from Ireland, as well as Special Olympics athlete Eduardo Vegas Ochoa from Madrid, who plays off a handicap of 20.2.
After taking on this challenging course, teams gathered for a fundraising auction which included highly sought after items, such as tickets to the 2015 Superclasico between Brazil and Argentina as well as an FC Barcelona club shirt signed by each team member.
Paul McGinley: “I am really honoured to host the first ever Special Olympics Golf Classic at such a magnificent course as PGA Catalunya Resort and to have so much support today. I want to wish Team Spain every success at the Special Olympics World Games in Los Angeles this summer. My advice is the same advice I gave to Team Europe at The 2014 Ryder Cup, “embrace the pressure but do everything with a smile on your face”.
Juan Antonio Samaranch, a member of the International Olympic Committee and Chairman of Special Olympics Spain, also attended today’s Golf Classic adding: “We are very grateful that so many sporting heroes have turned out to support our Special Olympics athletes. Our athletes are also heroes as they overcome many challenges to reach their personal best in sport and life. We hope that the whole country will get behind Team Spain and celebrate their achievements in Los Angeles this summer.”
Team Spain will compete in 11 sports at the 2015 Special Olympics World Games which runs from July 25th to August 2nd in sporting venues across Los Angeles. The 78 athletes will compete in 7-a-side football, 5-a-side football, basketball (female), bocce, tennis, swimming, athletics, Unified basketball, table tennis, badminton and handball. To cover the cost of sending Team Spain to the World Games, Special Olympics Spain must raise € 170,000.
The Special Olympics Spain website can be found here
Black Mountain Wins IAGTO Diamond AwardBlack Mountain Wins IAGTO Diamond Award
European Tour Properties’ newest member, Black Mountain Golf Club and Resort, has become the first course in Thailand to receive a Diamond Award for excellence from the International Association of Golf Tour Operators (IAGTO).
The award was made at the official convention dinner during IAGTO’s fourth annual Asian Golf Tourism Convention, held in Jakarta, and was accepted by Black Mountain managing director, Harald Elisson.
IAGTO Diamond Awards recognise courses for their outstanding quality in playing experience, presentation and customer service. They were presented this year to courses in Malaysia, Vietnam, China, the United Arab Emirates, the Philippines and Cambodia.
Black Mountain, near Hua Hin on the Gulf of Thailand, 200 kilometres south of Bangkok, became a European Tour Properties member following the True Thailand Classic, a co-sanctioned European Tour and Asian Tour event, which was held for the first time in February.
Harald Elisson thanked golf tour operators, more than 300 of whom attended the convention, for supporting Black Mountain so strongly and for the role they played in the course receiving the accolade. He said Black Mountain would continue to strive to provide the best experience on and off the course in the future.
Black Mountain Golf Club is part of a modern complex that includes villas and condominiums, a spa, water park and wakeboard park, tennis and volleyball facilities and restaurant in a dramatic mountainside setting near the booming seaside resort city of Hua Hin.