17 Jul 17
Amateur Andy Picton (right) with pro partner Steve Parry.
Bolton amateur Andy Picton found the ideal combination on and off the course as he clinched his place in the Lombard Trophy Final.
Picton teamed up with Hart Common Golf Club PGA Professional Steve Parry for the qualifying event which was held at Fairhaven Golf Club in Lytham St Annes.
Parry is also sponsored by 16-handicapper Picton and the pair proved to be an ideal fit as they carded a stunning 11 under par round of 62 which gave them victory by three shots ahead of John Blackburn and Will Poole of Mendip Spring Golf Club.
The win means they will now play in the final in Portugal and it is proving to be an eventful time for 48-year-old Picton who is also Hart Common captain this year.
“I sponsor Steve under the name of Manchester Vein Clinic which is a brand of ours, we do varicose vein treatments and Steve carries that brand in the professional events,” said Picton, who is a managing director of a company that scans arteries and veins using ultrasound.
“It’s a busy year but I’m sure we can squeeze in a Portugal trip after this!”
The duo made a quick fire start and reached the turn in 30, which included a nett eagle at the third hole, before securing five birdies on the back nine for a win that was rarely in doubt.
“My putting’s usually quite good but the rest of my game’s rubbish! And I also managed to up and down a couple of bunker shots,” added Picton.
“I was surprised to qualify for the event in the first place as I play off 16, so it was nip and tuck. But we dovetailed very well when it came to playing at Fairhaven.”
They will now head for the £41,000 National Pro-Am grand final which will be played at the Vila Sol resort in the Algarve between September 21-22.
It will be Parry’s third appearance in the final after two appearances at Gleneagles in Scotland.
He was second in the 2014 final and missed out on the title by one shot with amateur partner Terry Battersby and also competed in the 2013 showpiece.
“I’ll have been in it three times in five years now. I didn’t drop a shot at Fairhaven and Andy came in with a good few birdies, we had a good front nine, but we know each other quite well as he’s been my sponsor for the last three years,” said Parry.