08 Jan 19
The PGA EuroPro Tour has announced its tournament schedule for 2019 with five new stunning venues bolstering the highly anticipated line up.
The 2019 season tees off on 22ndMay as the PGA EuroPro Tour heads to the fantastic Melbourne Club at Brocket Hall (Palmerston Course) in Hertfordshire, as some of the sport’s best young and up and coming talent compete for promotion on to the Challenge Tour in 2020 with more than £850,000 in prize money this season.
The Palmerston is frequently held up as a perfect example of a top-quality golf course created with minimum intrusion to the site. Teamed with fiendishly placed bunkers and large undulating greens this challenging par 73 is a great test and is rightfully rated as one of the best courses in England.
The Tour then heads back to Harleyford Golf Club in Marlow (29-31 May) where, last year, one of the Tour’s graduates, Billy Spooner, tasted victory for the first time in his career, the first of two title wins for the highly rated youngster.
Moving into June (5-7), the Tour goes to Donnington Grove Golf Club in Newbury, as the EuroPro stars test their mettle on the Championship Course; the 7108-yard par 72 is regarded as the best in the region.
Making a return on the schedule is Cumberwell Park Golf Club (19-21 June), a favourite on the Tour and one which saw Longridge’s Mark Young secure his second consecutive win in 2018, the second of his three title wins last season.
From 26-28 June the Tour returns to Dudsbury Golf Club Hotel & Spa for the first time in over a decade; set in the beautiful Dorset countryside across 160 acres the Championship Course has been home to many prestigious events including the BMW PGA Order of Merit Championship.
The following week (3-5 July) sees the Tour visit the first of three consecutive Macdonald Golf Resorts, the first being Macdonald Linden Hall. Set in the picturesque countryside of Northumbria and designed by course architect Jonathan Gaunt, the 6846-yard Championship course features four challenging par 3’s, with water coming into play for nine holes in total.
Then the Tour moves to Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf & Spa (10-12) July. The Championship Course at Macdonald Portal Hotel, Golf & Spa, opened in 1990, was named 'Golf Course of the Year' in 1995, and is the star of Portal's golfing complex. Designer Donald Steel has created a challenge that is characterised by unique and distinctive holes; expansive water hazards and cascading waterfalls are among the tests. The signature is typical of Steel's magnificent 7,037-yard layout - the long third tips the scales at 607 yards, with a green guarded by a beautiful lake.
A week later (17-19 July), the Tour heads north to the former Challenge Tour venue of the Macdonald Aviemore Resort, home of the award-winning Spey Valley Championship Course.
Recently voted one of the best courses in Scotland, Spey Valley is home to one of the longest holes in the country, the 635-yard 5th. The 6846-yard par 72 was home to the Challenge Tour for almost a decade, and now some of the world’s brightest emerging talents have a chance to test their game at one of the most stunning yet challenging courses on the EuroPro Tour schedule in 2019.
Following Spey Valley is the return of Caversham Heath Golf Club (24-26 July), where one of the Tour’s 2018 graduates Jordan Wrisdale clinched his maiden Tour victory, famously home to one of the toughest finishes on Tour.
The Tour then returns to another regular venue in the form of Mannings Heath Golf Club & Wine Estate (8-10 August), where 2018 Order of Merit winner Dave Coupland narrowly missed out on a third title win of the season in a thrilling one-hole playoff against eventual champion Billy Hemstock.
From August 13-15 the Tour heads back to the home of Final Stage Q School Frilford Heath Golf Club (Blue Course), which opened proceedings last season and saw Scotland’s Paul O’Hara take the first trophy of the year home and the £10,000 winner’s cheque.
The Tour then goes to a fourth and final stop of the Macdonald venues, finishing up at none other than Macdonald Hill Valley in Shropshire. Designed by Peter Alliss and Dave Thomas the Emerald Championship Course is the shortest of the three at 6714-yards but a tough par 73 test. The combination of natural water hazards and strategically placed bunkers will provide a real challenge to all taking part as they bid to win promotion onto the Challenge Tour in 2020.
Completing the August line up is the stunning Tulfarris Hotel & Golf Resort (28-30 August), which is home to the PGA EuroPro Tour’s Irish Masters until 2020. Last year saw huge drama unfold on the final hole as Mark Young found himself in a three-man playoff when he looked to be nowhere near the top of the pack. One playoff hole later and the Longridge man was lifting the third trophy of his season a loft as he sought out the £250,000 four-win bonus on offer.
Moving into September (4-6) the Tour returns to Studley Wood Golf Club where, last year, Scott Fallon wrote his name in the Tour’s history books with the lowest ever aggregate score recorded in competition at 22-under par.
Completing the 15-venue schedule is Newmachar Golf Club in Aberdeen, which had the same honour last year. Billy Spooner won a tense three-hole playoff against Thomas Robson to clinch his second title of the season, ultimately securing Challenge Tour status for the 2019 season.
Daniel Godding, Chief Executive of the PGA EuroPro Tour, said: “I am delighted with the schedule we have built for the 2019 season. We are welcomed back to some superb venues which have previously hosted in addition to some fantastic new courses.
“Last year was again a superb year for some EuroPro alumni on the Challenge and European Tours. And with the pool of talent currently developing on our Tour, combined with the quality of courses set for 2019, the upcoming season will test the best young golfers in Europe and develop them into stars of the future.
“With £50,000 prize fund up for grabs at every tournament, not to mention TV exposure on Sky Sports and over 100 Countries around the world, the PGA EuroPro Tour truly is the best place to hone your game.”
Offering direct access to the Challenge Tour through the final Order of Merit, PGA EuroPro Tour players will compete for over £850,000 of prize money in 2019, with the top five golfers at the end of the season awarded a category on the 2020 Challenge Tour.
Providing vital experience of life on tour, players will compete in 15 main events at some of the UK and Ireland’s premier golfing venues.
The season concludes with the Tour’s top 60 players contending the Tour Championship. Players qualify to play on the HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour either through a two-stage Qualifying School in the spring, or thanks to their 2018 achievements.
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