22nd February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
Van Meijel grabbed maiden win in Egypt
Dutch Lars Van Meijel grabbed maiden win in Egypt. He won the Red Sea Little Venice Open with -13 total thanks to last round 68. Italy’s Jacopo Vecchi Fossa was at same score with 2 holes to play but eventually dropped back to back shots on the 17th and the 18th hole.
Lars Van Meijel was already in contention last week but did not succeed in lifting the big silver cup. This experience was for sure a precious one as he showed nerves of steel as he was leading the way since tee 1.
The young player from Netherlands had up to a 5 shot advantage during the last round but Vecchi Fossa, in the second last group was chasing him birdie after birdie. Still, the suspense was only on the leaderboard but on course, Van Meijel was 4 shots better teeing off the last hole than the leader at club house. He dropped 2 shots on 18th but could celebrate a first title as pro.
“I started really well, I played really good on the front nine. I just made a silly on the par 5 8th and I made some good birdies again. I had a really poor tee shot on the last hole and I made double. I have to admit it was because of emotion going for a win.
Compare to big amateur competitions there are not that many difference. The level is very hgh the only thing is that you are playing for money and every shots counts.”
Vecchi Fossa finished at second place and Gerard Piris Mateu, first day leader, completed the podium.
Lars Van Meijel with this win and a 4th place last week, is currently leading the Alps Tour order of Merit with 6425 points. Julien Brun is only 215 points back, with a win and a 5th place. Jacopo Vecchi Fossa is third, Alexandre Daydou, 4th and the 5th place goes to Xavier Poncelet.
21st February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
Rookies Van Meijel and Vacarisas on top in Sokhna
Rookies are leading in Red Sea Little Venice Open. Dutch Lars Van Meijel and Spain’s Lucas Vacarisas (picture) are both -9 total after shooting respectively 66 and 69.
Van Meijel, member of the last victorious Palmer Cup, was in contention last week during the first event of the season. This experience can help him to improve his 4th recorded last week.
« It was really cold this morning but I started really well, I was 4 under through 6 holes. So I thought it would be a pretty low round. Afterward I did not hit that many good shots but that was good enough and the par 5 I birdied.
Tomorrow I am just gonna go play the same I have the last 5 rounds and we will see. It is fun here because there are a lot of players I played with as an amateur and there 3 Dutch guys so it doesn’t really change now that I am professional »
Vacarisas, 18, holed 6 birdies during his round but had some trouble on a couple of holes. He admitted he could feel the pressure of being on top of the leaderboard.
« My day was good but I was a bit nervous at the beginning of the round. But I tried to stay calm and be patient and after 4 holes I started to play my game. I hope I will be able to play the same tomorrow and to hole the putts same as today. There is one round left and if I manage to play my game I have a chance to win. »
Last week winner, France’s Julien Brun is tie for 18th place with -2 total.
20th February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
Spain’s Piris Mateu and Vacarisas co-leaders in Egypt
Spain’s Gerard Piris and Lucas Vacarisas took a two shot advantage after opening round 66, -6 at Red Sea Little Venice Open. A French duet is on their toes, Robin Roussel and Thomas Perrot signed for 68.
Weeks hopefully are not the same in Egypt. The nice weather came back on the banks of the Red sea, finally and the field enjoyed great playing conditions in Sokhna Golf Club.
Last week was all about Frenchmen, this week started with a Spanish demonstration. Both Piris and Vacarisas shot flawless 66 in the afternoon after best score of the morning sessions was -3 for a pack of players.
Piris admitted that even if he played really nice, he got some lucky results.
« Of course, when you shoot 6 under, you are very happy. I played very well and in this kind of day, you got lucky as well. I did not have any momentum but I played well during all round. I put the ball in play, I hit it close to the pins and I holed some putts.
I think this composite A&B is a little more difficult than B&C played last week. The leader was -8 and the wind has changed. »
One of the youngest player on Alps Tour, Lucas Vacarisas, 18, is sharing the lead with his elder.
« At first, I did not play that well but my putting was ok. Then my game was more and more consistent and I manage to play my game with thinking about the results. Honestly, It makes no difference that we already played 9 holes last week. My game was good during back nine and front nine. »
The projected cut -1 after one round. Last week winner, Julien Brun, had a shy day with level par and Maxime Radureau holed the second albatross since the Alps Tour arrived in Egypt. After Leo Lespinasse last week, Radureau holed a 2 iron shot on the 8th to signed for 69.
16th February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
Brun claims maiden win as pro in Sokhna
France’s Julien Brun claimed maiden win as pro in Egypt. He signed for 69 final round to win by one shot the Ein Bay Open with -13 total. Compatriots Xavier Poncelet and Alex Daydou are ties for second. Brun had already won a pro event as an amateur in 2012 on Challenge Tour in France.
It has been ages since it was so cold and windy in Sokhna. Rain, wind and clouds were on the menu of the final round in Egypt. The joke of the day was that weather was better in Paris or Milan. Julien Brun had a very good start despite the tough conditions.
He holed for birdie on the first hole and gained two other shot on the par 5 7th and the 9th. Meanwhile in the last group, overnight leader Alex Daydou turned 38 after first nine. He admitted he made some mistakes here and there and did not putt as well as the previous two days. He holed for birdie on the last hole to finish second, a one thousand euro putt.
His playing partner rookie Lars Van Meijel played solid and was tie for the lead on the 15th when Brun dropped a shot but the Frenchman took advantage of the last par 5 of the course and holed for birdie on the 17th. Van Meijel dropped a shot there due to a bad tee shot and a 1,5 meter putt missed for par.
In the penultimate group, Xavier Poncelet climbed on the second step of the podium thanks to back to back birdie from the 16th.
« I started well so it helped to feel more comfortable on the back nine even if i could feel the pressure about a win. I am so happy with this win at the beginning of the season.
I missed a very short putt on the 11th. It kind of knocked me out and I struggled to get back in the pace but what is done is done and I am very satisfied with this win.
I saw the leaderboard on the 15th when I dropped a shot. I realize that there were many guys not so far away and I needed to finish well because they could finish with a hat trick of birdies. I gave myself chances, I had 3 birdies opportunities and I holed one on the 17th.
« All in all it was a good though. I played pretty well today compared to the past 2 days but I did not hole as many putts unfortunately but it happens, that is the game. I played par today, a bit disappointed with the way I started the day. It was brutal with the wind and the rain. I did what I could and I made a few mistakes here and there. On the back nine, I played really better and I managed to holed two birdies. »
« When I woke up this morning I saw it was very windy so I knew it would be tough conditions. I did not look too much at the leaderboard but I saw the one on the 15th and it helped me to play to some nice shots and to finish well.
I am happy because I have been working nicely with my coach -my brother- this winter. We worked less but better I think and I do lots of sports and it seemed to be the right thing. »
From Sokhna Golf Club
15th February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
Daydou storms clear in Egypt
France’s Alex Daydou fired back-to-back 66, -12 total to take late two shot lead at Ain Bay Open over fellow countrymen France’s Julien Brun, Léo Lespinasse and Dutch Lars Van Meijel.
It was a fresh and windy day on the banks of the Red Sea. Those who played early in the morning could have taken advantage of quitter conditions but none of them shot low and the surprise came at the end of the afternoon with the 20 year old player from Reunion island.
« It was so weird, I felt not comfortable at all with my driver but under 120 meters and on greens it was like I could not miss anything. But reference to the score, it was a very good day and I am just enjoying it. I had a very solid finish. On 16th, I hit a 5 iron from the tee, and holed 5 meters downhill.
On the par 5 17th, for once, I hit a good tee shot but I miss the green on the left, in the bunker. I made a poor bunker shot but again, I holed about 5 meters. And on the 18th, I played this hole safe with a 5 iron from the tee and hit my wedge 3 meters from the pin and holed it again.
When I read the green I chose a line and when I took my stance I was saying to myself – no, it is not going this way – I changed and put as I felt and it fell, Incredible! »
The young Frenchman will played in the last group in the hunt for a maiden win as pro with rookie from Netherlands, Lars Van Meijel. He turned pro last November.
« I had a bad start. I wanted to take advantage of the lack of wind early in the morning but I was over par after 6 holes. Then eventually, it went better. But today, pins positions were harder than yesterday and I am happy with my score. »
From Sokhna Golf Club
14th February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
Brun set the pace in Ain Bay Open with opening 64
France’s Julien Brun set the pace in Ain Bay Open with a eight under par card. He scored a flawless 64 on Sokhna course BC, one shot clear over a group of 3 players, Dutch Lars Van Meijel and France’s Léo Lespinasse and Charly Russo.
Fair conditions this morning for the leader as the wind only picked up during a couple of hours during lunch time. Julien Brun, one of the new French talent, had a brilliant day.
« Really nice to start the season like this. I struggled a bit on back nine but I putted very well so it helped. Everything went right today and my putting was excellent. The course is fair, open, there are many wedge shots to the green. Greens are in excellent shape and I knew I had to go the lowest I can and I managed to do this today.
The key today was the putting, I holed some crucial ones on back nine to stay in the pace. I saved pars and holed long ones for birdies. We had good conditions playing in the morning with non wind but I really like to play in the wind so I am looking forward to play tomorrow. The course will be very funny to play in the wind. »
Eventually the afternoon was quite calm as far as weather was concerned but it was pretty hot on the 7th. France’s Léo Lespinasse holed his first Albatross ever. After nice tee shot, he hit a 5 iron, straight in line and it was rolling on the green, he playing partner, Antoine Rozner shout « Get in ! »
« We saw the ball rolled and then it stopped and we could still see it so I thought I missed it, again. Yes again because, I was close a couple of time to hole for an albatross. We were chatting with my partners then, after a few seconds, we looked at the green and did not see it. A referee was at the green and told us that the ball stayed a few second by the stick and then eventually fell in the hole.
I did not jump nor shout and I managed to stay focus until the end. I holed nice putts and I did some mistakes too but it was a nice day. »
Same score for Netherlands’ Lars Van Meijel, 22, with 8 birdies and one bogey. He turned pro last November, was a member of the winning team in the last Palmer Cup and decided to come and play on Alps Tour because he ”likes France and Italy”.
« I played well, I dropped a shot on the third hole but yes but in general, good wedge shots, I hit the fairways. It was really windy during the practice round and I knew the guys on Pro Golf Tour a couple weeks ago shot really low and I couldn’t see scores like this with the wind but today, the wind went down a little bit. »
From Sokhna Golf Club
10th February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
Numbers, Facts and Figures
The 2017 Alps Tour season is about to be launched. Egypt has been the host of winter series for 5 seasons now and players are packing to travel in the very next days as Ein Bay Open starts next Tuesday.
The season 2016 was colored by an amazing rising star, England’s Matt Wallace, 6 time winner last year. But this was not the only figures worth being noticed.
The total amount of prize money in 2016 was 750 000 € and the average for a tournament was 44000 €, 10 % better than in 2014.
The best winning score was recorded by Matt Wallace during Gösser Open, He signed for -20 after 54 holes and recorded as well the biggest winning margin, 8 shots. The toughest course was the host of Open de Saint François Guadeloupe as Leo Lespinasse won with -6 total defeated David Morago after extra holes.
The average winning score in 2016 is the highest of 7 seasons : -13,94. It was -13,2 in 2010 when Matteo Delpodio won the order of merit.
Players have to be prepared to beat the courses to make the cut as 9 cuts out of 16 events (no cut during Grand Final) were at level par of better.
Finally, the average age of 2016 graduates is 24,8. Let’s beat the record in 2017!
6th February 2017 | Alps Tour Golf
The 2017 Season is here in Egypt
For the fourth time, the Alps Tour will start the season in Egypt, at Sokhna Golf Club (Ain Sokhna, near Suez) on the Red Sea with two tournaments:
-Ein Bay Open from 14th to 16th February
-Red Sea Little Venice Open from 20th to 22th February.
Our Rising Golf Stars will (re)discover the wonderful resort of Sokhna Golf Club with its undulating fairways and prefect greens. Scores should be interesting!
After the victories of Englishmen Steven Brown, Andrew Cooley in 20104, Frenchmen Thomas Elissalde and Alexandre Widemann in 2015 and France’s Franck Daux with a back-to-back last year. Who will write his name on the trophy this year?