Bregman Enters Rookie Top 10
Lee-Anne Pace and Stacy Lee Bregman finished best for South Africa, as Sweden’s Linda Wessberg posted a final round 65 in torrential rain to claim her second Ladies European Tour title at the Vediorbis Open de France Dames at Le Golf D’Arras on Monday.
Bregman and Pace lie in 10th and 11th positions respectively on the Rookie of the Year Order of Merit, after each have played 6 Ladies European Tour events in 2007.
Pace secured her best finish of the year, and tripled her year’s earnings for her two-over par 290 in a group of five for a shared 21st position, 13 shots behind event winner Wessberg.
Pace kept her best round till last, and were it not for an unfortunate double-bogie on the 13th, her six birdies would have comfortably seen off the bogie at the 12th flag.
Bregman will be disappointed with her 79-final round score, on a day when seven bogies were unanswered, for a tournament 12-over par score of 300, after promising rounds on days two and three.
Remaining South African Laurette Maritz missed the cut after a half-way score of 152, when day 1’s score of 75 was compounded by a second-round 77.
French Open champ the 27-year-old Wessberg began the day four shots behind the overnight leader Englishwoman Rebecca Hudson and eventually won by one stroke on eleven-under-par 277, while Trish Johnson carded a final round 68 to finish a shot behind in second place.
Wessberg, who won the 2006 Wales Ladies Open, came firing out of the blocks with two birdies in her first two holes. She then picked up another at the par-five fourth to reach seven-under-par, two strokes behind the leader.
She then posted three successive birdies from the sixth hole to reach the turn in six-under 30, with a one stroke lead on ten-under. She dropped a shot at the 11th to move into a three-way tie for the lead with Hudson and Johnson before two further birdies on the inward nine at holes 13 and 18 took her to 11-under.
She had only 26 putts, with her longest of the day a 39 foot bomb at the seventh, which took her into a share of the lead for the first time at nine-under.
“I was hitting the ball really good. It was a little frustrating yesterday because I didn’t feel like I was playing badly but no putts went in. I got off to a good start and then all of a sudden I was six under after nine,” said Wessberg, a fan of all sports and ice hockey in particular.
At the 18th hole, a par five, Wessberg nailed a 20 footer to emerge one stroke clear. Johnson, playing two matches behind, had a birdie opportunity to catch her but a chip from eight feet stopped two inches short.
“It’s nice to be able to show that winning last year wasn’t a one-off,” said Wessberg, who had her boyfriend Daniel Eriksson on caddy duties. Eriksson plays off approximately a 20 handicap.
Prior to her victory, Wessberg had played in just two LET events in Australia this season. She spent the remainder of the season playing on the LPGA Tour in the United States, where she holds a conditional card. Her best finish in America was joint ninth in the Corona Championship, but she missed out on gaining her full card by one spot after the tri-yearly re-ranking.
She returned to Europe in the hope of improving her ranking on the New Star Money List ahead of the Ricoh Women’s British Open, which takes place at St Andrews at the beginning of August.
Next week she will play in the Algarve Ladies Open of Portugal, which takes place from 29th June – 1st July at Gramacho Golf Course on the Algarve. She will then head to Chart Hills in Kent for the Ladies English Open in association with Golf Punk, from 5 – 7 July.