2019 Irish Challenge headed for Headfort Golf Club

Headfort New Course (Photo: Getty Images)

Headfort Golf Club will welcome the cream of the European Challenge Tour later this year with confirmation that the 2019 Irish Challenge will be played on the New Course in Kells when the tournament returns to the International Schedule for a fifth consecutive year from October 10-13.

Ranked at number 42 on Irish Golfer Magazine’s top-100 courses in 2018, the Headfort New Course is a parkland guaranteed to provide a stern test for the Challenge Tour’s elite at a crucial time on the golfing calendar.

The Irish Challenge is the final full-field event of the season, with only the leading 53 players on the season-long Rankings eligible for the Hainan and Foshan Opens in China, before the best 45 players from the season tee it up at the Challenge Tour Grand Final, where the top 15 players on the Rankings will earn European Tour cards.

Designed by Irish golfing legend Christy O’Connor Jnr, the Headfort New Course measures 7,125 yards and will provide a visually stunning stage for the fierce competition.

Gerri Houlihan, Chairperson of Headfort Golf Club, said: ”Headfort Golf Club are delighted to host the Irish Challenge tournament in 2019. We welcome the opportunity to work closely with the European Challenge Tour to ensure a fabulous event on the New Course at Headfort.

“I am positive it will be a great occasion and provides the Club a unique opportunity to showcase one of the finest courses in the country.

“Whilst visually stunning, pinpoint accuracy and great skill will be required to negotiate this demanding course. Headfort Golf Club, and the town of Kells look forward to extending a royal county welcome to players and spectators alike.”

Headfort Golf Club’s connection to O’Connor Jnr will be further strengthened this year as the Irish players in the field once again vie for the Christy O’Connor Jnr Memorial Trophy, which is awarded to the lowest scoring Irishman. Last year, Naas professional, Conor O’Rourke claimed the trophy with his tied 23rd place finish.

Alain de Soultrait, Director, European Challenge Tour said: “We could not be more pleased to bring the Irish Challenge to Headfort Golf Club. This year marks the fifth anniversary of the event and the Headfort New course is a venue fitting of this special occasion. It will be a very good test for all our Members at a crucial time of the Challenge Tour season. We look forward to a great week with tremendous support from the passionate Irish golf fans.”