England and Wales (North) Region
14 May 15
Alex Belt admits he’s can’t keep Wentworth off his mind as he prepares for his BMW PGA Championship debut.
“I’ve been thinking about it more than anything else,” he said. “I would be lying if I wasn’t because it’s one of the biggest events in the world.
The 29-year-old attached to Snainton Golf Centre in North Yorkshire is one of 10 pros to earn a spot at the European Tour’s flagship event through the end of season PGA Play-Offs in Turkey,
Belt, who topped the PGA in England and Wales (North) Order of Merit last season, will go into it with his confidence riding high after winning twice in Spain earlier in the year and setting a course record nine-under-par at El Valle.
Back home, he won the Titleist & FootJoy PGA Pros Championship qualifier at Fulford and a Yorkshire PGA pro-am at Malton and Norton.
Belt has been spending more time than usual honing his skills with his team of coaches headed by Andrew Nicholson.
“We’ve been working on the usual sort of things,” he added. “And I’ve already played a practice round at Wentworth because I’d never been there before.”
A glorious six-day festival of golf and celebrity spotting swings into action on Tuesday, May 19 when the BMW PGA Championship prepares to host some of the world’s greatest players and globally renowned A-list celebrities.
From the star-studded Celebrity Pro-Am on Wednesday May 20 to the trophy-laden prize giving ceremony on Sunday May 24, the worlds of golf and entertainment collide at the stunning home of The European Tour, Wentworth Club in Surrey.
This year’s BMW PGA Championship, which takes place over 72 holes from May 19-24, has seen record levels of interest, with advance ticket sales the highest they have ever been (compared with the same sales period in previous years).
Pre-booked seats in the iconic 18th grandstand are up 40 per cent on last year and, in response to the unprecedented levels of demand, The European Tour has increased capacity in two of its most popular grandstands - adding 475 extra seats in the 18th green amphitheatre, taking its overall capacity up to 2,561; while the first tee grandstand will seat up to 288 spectators this year, an increase of 97 from 2014.
The ever-popular BMW PGA Celebrity Pro-Am will once again act as the official curtain raiser to this year’s tournament. The all-star celebrity line-up includes One Direction’s Niall Horan, confirmed to play a morning four-ball with World Number One and reigning BMW PGA Champion Rory McIlroy, along with Manchester United legends Phil Neville and Paul Scholes.
TV duo and recent Bafta winners, Ant and Dec, will be making their BMW PGA celebrity Pro-Am debut alongside fellow Geordie and former Newcastle United striker Alan Shearer. Guiding the celebrity trio around Wentworth’s iconic West Course will be former World Number One and Ryder Cup star Lee Westwood.
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