15th August 2020 | Alps Tour Golf

Lukas Nemecz Reclaims His Crown

Maria Lankowitz (Austria), August 15, 2020 – What a great way to celebrate the return of the Alps Tour 2020 season with a nail-biting finish here at the Gösser Open which saw Lukas Nemecz from Austria, winner of the tournament in 2017, grab the title on the last hole with a -17 (199) for the 54 holes.

The final round teed off at 11:15am. Possible inclement weather later in the afternoon imposed a shotgun start at the Erzherzog Johann Golf Club to ensure that the round could be completed.

Round 2 had finished at 10:45am with Jordi Garcia Del Moral from Spain topping the leader board at 130 (-14) and in joint second place at 132 (-12) the Frenchman Thomas Elissalde and two Austrian players, Alexander Kopp and the amateur Maximilian Lechner. Yesterday’s number two, Angel Hidalgo Portillo from Spain, started in fifth position at 133 (-11) alongside the Italian Jacopo Vecchi Fossa and Lukas Nemecz from Austria.

Everything looked to be plain sailing as Jordi Garcia Del Moral started the back nine at -17 overall. However, Sebastien Gandon from France suddenly burst into contention.  He had started from the 8th tee at -8 and opened with 5 straight pars. He then went into a birdie frenzy of 8 in a row which saw him steam up the leader board to second position on hole thirteen.

This left him just three strokes behind the leader. Jordi then bogeyed the 15th to leave just two strokes between them and three holes to go. Sebastien finished with pars to come into the clubhouse with an amazing -8 (64) for the day and 200 (-16) for the tournament.

Jordi was still out on the course with two holes to play and…he bogeyed the last two placing him and Sebastien in line for a play-off with both sitting at 200 (-16).

But Thomas Elissalde, winner of the Gösser Open in 2014, who started at -12 from the first tee alongside Jordi, had three birdies on the front nine interrupted by a double bogey to see him on the 10th for -14. He kept his cool on the last nine holes and another two birdies saw a three-way play-off lined up.

And still more surprises, as the Austrian player Alexander Kopp at -15 on the 17th birdied the last hole to also finish with 200 (-16). A four-way play-off?

All eyes were now riveted on Lukas Nemecz, who had teed off from the third at -11. Following three birdies he was at -15 with two holes to play. Two magnificent birdies saw him winning his second Gösser Open trophy and third Alps Tour win after the 2019 Dreamland Pyramids Open.

Lukas had not realised that he was putting for his second Gösser victory on the 18th green:

“I thought Jordi was still at -18 and didn’t know that he had bogeyed the last two holes. I knew the last putt was important, but I didn’t know it was for the win. I couldn’t believe it when people said that it was the winner.”

He also talked about at being back playing professional golf and the Covid restrictions:

“It’s great that we can play golf and that the Alps Tour and the promotor did everything possible so that we could play. It’s important to play every opportunity that we have. It’s a little different with the Covid situation and we’ve had to make little adaptations but that make sense and are very important. At the end of the day it’s a 54-hole tournament and every hole counts. It was great playing but I’m happy it’s over!”.

One of the adaptations for the tournament is the innovation by the Alps Tour of the introduction of a mobile phone live scoring application, replacing paper score cards and thus reducing contact points. Developed by OCS Sport, led by MD Lee Probert, the players reacted very positively to it. As the winner, Lukas Nemecz said:

“I think it’s great. It’s modern, easy to use, a real live scoring. We’re living in a digital world, so I think it’s really good”.

The new application will become standard for future tournaments and the next Alps Tour 2020 tournament is the Cervino Alps Open at the Cervino Golf Club in Italy from 2nd to 4th September 2020. A presto!

 

Final results: click here

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14th August 2020 | Alps Tour Golf

Day 2 Play Suspended – Jordi Garcia Del Moral Still Topping the Leaderboard

Maria Lankowitz (Austria), August 14, 2020 – It has been an exciting and eventful day here at the Gösser Open at Erzherzog Johann Golf Club. Play was finally suspended at 7:50pm due to darkness with Jordi Garcia Del Moral keeping his lead with a 131 (-13) overall with 8 holes to play.

The day started at 7:00am with Round 1 to be completed, at the end of which the top two positions stayed the same with the Spaniards Jordi Garcia Del Moral at -12 (60) leading the board and Angel Hidalgo Portillo at -8 (64).

In the group of players in third position at -7 (65), one change as the Austrian amateur, Maximilian Lechner moved up to join his compatriots Uli Weinhandl and Lukas Nemecz. That made a group of six in all with the Italians Jacopo Vecchi Fossa and Andrea Saracino and the New Zealander Shaun Jones.

At -6 (66) the group of four including Sam Robinson from England, Tomas Bessa Guimaraes from Portugal and Sebastien Gandon from France saw one movement as the Austrian Alexander Kopp moved up when the Frenchman Thomas Elissalde dropped a shot to finish -5 (67).

However, Thomas Elissalde did a rapid turnaround and started Round 2 at 9:15am with 5 birdies on the front nine and another 3 on the back nine. He was on the 18th tee when play was suspended at 1:50pm due to thunderstorms. He gave a summary of his day:

 “I was up very early to finish Round 1 and didn’t necessarily do the best on the last holes as I dropped a shot on the 18th after play resumed. But Round 2 was much better where I had good course management, putting and wedging. I love this course and overall am pretty happy with my game”.

He finished the day in the number 2 slot with a -7 (65) for the day and a total 132 (-12) for the two rounds. Joining him in joint second place are the two Austrians who had moved up a shot at the end of Round 1 this morning. The rookie Alexander Kopp, winner of the Pro-am on Wednesday, continued his excellent week. Teeing off from the tenth he did mirror -5 (33) on both nines with a total of 7 birdies and one bogey.  Whilst the Austrian amateur, Maximilian Lechner, teeing off from the first had 6 birdies for just one bogey.

In fifth place behind the leaders is the Italian Jacopo Vecchi Fossa at 133 (-11) after carding a -4 (68) for the day.

Right behind him in joint sixth is a group of four players at 134 (-10) including three Austrian players, Lukas Lipold, Uli Weinhandl, and Lukas Nemecz. However, Lukas is in the clubhouse whilst Uli still has 8 holes to play and Lukas 9 holes, alongwith the fourth member of the group, Englishman, Sam Robinson.

One happy player in the clubhouse today was the Austrian amateur, lady player, Emma Spitz who more than held her own coming in with a -4 (68) for the day to give her an overall 137 (-7) for the two days and placing her in joint 21st position. The Viennese native and winner of the 2018 Girls’ British Amateur Open had a very lucid approach to her game:

“I saw it as a challenge for myself to play from the back tees. It wasn’t even about playing against the guys, it was more about challenging myself. I really tried to focus on my own game, playing it hole by hole, using the birdie opportunities when I had them  and not thinking about what the other guys were doing as they hit the ball so much further than me. My goal wasn’t to make the cut, just to play the best golf I could but to end up making the cut is really cool”.

With play suspended and 69 players still out on the course, we could still be in for some surprises tomorrow. Play will resume at 7:00 am Saturday morning 15th August to finish Round 2. The aim is to then finish the third round, weather permitting. Watch this space!

Results: click here

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16th May 2019 | Alps Tour Golf

Gösser Open, Cianchetti leads on -9 after first round

16 May, 2019 – Maria Lankowitz (Aut) – The 8th tournament on the 2019 Alps Tour season is well underway on its most historical venue, beautiful GC Erzherzog Johann at Maria Lankowitz, near Graz, in Austria, one of the most appreciated date by players and organization alike.

Italian Luca Cianchetti shot a stunning 63 – minus 9 – to take an early lead, which never changed during a day when the weather conditions changed from pretty calm and mild in the morning, to windy and freezing towards the end of the game. Tied on second place, one stroke back, are two players, Austrian Bernard Neumayer, 28, who took advantage of the « home factor » to shoot a very consistent, bogey-free 64 (eagle on hole n. 1 and six birdies), and Frenchman Paul Elissalde, 23, who stumbled in a bogey-6 on hole 16 but had previously a great stretch of birdies (eight) and was able to react with one more, on hole 17.

« It was a good round from the beginning, I was minus three after four holes – said Cianchetti, 23, who won last March his first event as a pro in Egypt (Katameya Open) and is now 9th in the seasonal ranking – my game was not top from tee to green but I’ve putted really well, that was the key today. I was a bit stop-and-go, with 4 birdies on the front nine, then an eagle on my 10th hole (the 1st) followed by two birdies in a row. I’m very satisfied for the way I’ve managed my game today, even when on my back nine the wind picked up a bit ; then I’ve finished with a birdie on the last hole for a minus 9, which is my personal record ! I’m feeling confident with my game, I think I can be competitive and I’ll try to continue in this way. I like this course very much, it is in great conditions from tee to green, it’s perfect ; and Maria Lankowitz is a very pleasant place to be, the weather was good today, I’m enjoying it very much. I’m looking forward for next two days”.

144 players teed off today (35 amateurs), and 63 shot under par – 13 more than last year, so proving the ever-increasing level of the game on the Alps Tour. The prize money at stake is 42,500 euros, with a cheque for the winner of 6,162 euros.

First round results: click here

Second round draw : click here

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