Conor Purcell signed off with a three-under par 69 for a double-digit under par week as Santiago Tarrio picked up his second European Challenge Tour victory in three weeks to climb into first place on the Road to Mallorca Rankings.
Portmarnock’s Purcell had briefly led on day two in Cadiz but a moving day 75 really halted the Dubliner’s momentum. He carded an eagle and five birdies on Sunday in a rousing finish but in the end it was a tie for 27th at 10-under par; the 23-year old banking €1,660 for the effort and moving up 11 places to 76th on the Road to Mallorca standings.
It was all about the 30-year-old Spaniard Tarrio atop the board who posted a blemish-free six-under-par round of 66 to finish at 20-under par and one shot clear of Frenchman Frederic Lacroix, Scotland’s Ewen Ferguson and Australia’s Blake Windred at Iberostar Real Club de Golf Novo Sancti Petri.
Lacroix led by one shot standing on the 17th tee, but bogeys on the last two holes saw him slip down the leaderboard as Tarrio held firm to claim his second victory of the month, having already triumphed at the D+D REAL Czech Challenge, and is now just one victory away from securing his European Tour card for the 2022 season.
The two-time Challenge Tour champion praised Noelia Garcia, his partner and caddie for her contribution to the victory and admitted he will find it tough without her on the bag next week at the Open de Bretagne.
“I am very happy. It is a special week because I have my partner on the bag as caddie,” he said. “She makes it easier for me and it is so nice having her be able to stay with me this week.
“Next week unfortunately she is unable to travel with me. This makes it much more difficult for me. My caddie is responsible for 80% of my golf because she reads all of the slopes on the greens for me. This is a fantastic golf course with a fantastic hotel and it is a very nice place to stay two weeks in a row. The course is a very good test, the food is amazing and the volunteers are great too,” he said.
“I didn’t make any birdies on the easier holes, but I had my golf under control the whole round and went bogey-free.
“It was so difficult to win twice and to win three times would be crazy. I try every week to win but there are so many guys who play very good golf. I am improving my golf every day and hopefully I can win the three events to get onto the European Tour.”
Last week’s wire-to-wire Challenge de Cádiz champion Kristof Ulenaers joined first-round leader Lucas Vacarisas in a share of fifth place on 18 under par, while Englishman Alfie Plant and American Chase Hanna shared seventh place on 17 under par. Four players shared ninth place on 16 under par, including Bain Whisky Cape Town Open champion JC Ritchie.
Wilco Nienaber sits in second place on the Road to Mallorca Rankings following his Dimension Data Pro-Am victory, and Scotland’s Craig Howie remains in third position.
The Road to Mallorca now moves to France, with the Open de Bretagne at Golf Bluegreen de Pléneuf Val André from Tuesday June 24 – Friday June 27.
- Full scoring HERE