Learning experience paying off for Maguire as he leads Q-School

Ronan MacNamara

Alex Maguire (Photo by Octavio Passos/R&A/R&A via Getty Images)

Alex Maguire will return to Florida Atlantic University next week to complete his college duties but he is already learning on the job after soaring to the top of the class at the First Stage of DP World Tour Q-School.

Maguire fired a blistering seven-under 65 to hit the front on fifteen-under-par and he looks well placed to return to the Second Stage in November.

“Played lovely today, felt comfortable with all parts of my game, kept it in play which is very important around this place, if you are in play off the tee you can shoot a score like I did today,” said the Laytown & Bettystown amateur who hit seven birdies, an eagle and just two bogeys at Austria’s Golfclub Schloss Ebreichsdorf.


“Lots of 2 irons off tees and short to mid irons in and could be aggressive with the soft greens. Held a few putts which was nice and managed to make up for some missed putts on the front with putts on the back nine. It was a solid round of golf and I am very happy with it.”

Maguire has had a glittering summer, playing in the Open Championship, Horizon Irish Open as well as making his Walker Cup debut for Great Britain and Ireland earlier this month. The St Andrews Links Trophy champion is showing no signs of tiredness and felt entering Q-School this week was a good chance for him to take a few notes and gain experience for when he inevitably comes back here as a professional.

“I just felt with the summer I’ve had and with the momentum going forward I said I would give it a shot. I didn’t know if I was going to play well or not play well I know I will have to do it eventually as a pro so I said if I go as an amateur I won’t feel as much pressure and just go out there and get some experience and try my hand in the pro game.

“I’ll still go back to college next week and play for my college and get my degree but I just thought Q-School would be a good learning experience for me whether I come out with a tour card or not, just to see what it’s like as an amateur so I will have to do it as a pro. Given the chance I have now, playing well and having my name out there I thought I’d give it a shot and see how I get on and it seems to have paid off so far but we are only one stage of three to go so I can’t get too far ahead of myself.”

Also in a good position to advance is Kilkenny’s Mark Power who won €40,000 on his professional debut at the Irish Open last weekend. He carded a two-under 70 to lie in a share of 12th place on eleven-under-par.

Amateurs Charlie Kelly and Peter O’Keeffe missed the final round cut.

Meanwhile in Sweden a disappointing final round 75 from JR Galbraith saw him miss out on qualifying for Stage Two by a shot.

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