Thank you Bad Ragaz!
I had been told that Bad Ragaz was the top event on the European Senior Tour and everything about it was fantastic.
The golf course is a tight tree lined course, in wonderful condition and the views of the mountains surrounding were awesome.
The weather the entire week was super hot with each day at between 33C and 37C.
It was interesting to learn that the golf season in Bad Ragaz begins the middle of March and ends in the middle of October. As well the winter temperatures are not as cold as we experience in Southern Ontario.
The meals put on by the club were out of this world as Chefs from around the world come to the town and golf club to train during the summer. The result is a week of gaining extra weight around the mid section.
I had the privilege of playing in the Pro-Am on Thursday with Maya Ender, Marc Brogle and Michael Hilti. We had a blast playing and finished a respectable T-12th.
Often tournaments in Europe offer special prizes for a hole-in-one and the Swiss Senior Open is no exception. There are prizes offered on every par-3 and on the 3rd hole in the first round my 8-iron rolled over the edge of the hole and finished inside 1 foot of the hole. The spectators surrounding the tee and the green where cheering enthusiastically but to no avail. The prize on that hole was 1kg of gold!! Sure would have been nice to win that.
The tournament was a lot of fun as I had an opportunity to contend for the title.
As most of you know I do not look at the leaderboards when playing as I find it a distraction. However, since I felt that I was not making any kind of progress on the leader during the front nine of the final round, I took a look at the leaderboard.
To my surprise the leader had not pulled away and the chasing pack had increased in size as the scoring was really good for those players who teed off earlier in the day.
Sitting at 7-under par through the ninth hole, I felt a 5-under par back nine would be required to give myself a chance to win. Following birdies on 10, 12 and 14 I was now at 10-under par and apparently briefly at the top of the table.
I only found this out after the round when I spoke with family and friends because as I mentioned I do not pay attention to the leaderboard preferring to just try making great swings and solid putts, thus giving myself the best chance for success.
Unfortunately, I did not convert on the 15th and 16th holes which were birdie possibilities and a bogey at the last left me in a T-8th position at 9-under par.
Congrats to Gordon Manson who had the lead going into the final round and hit stride on the back nine to win in style.
Gordon and I have played a few times and enjoyed dinner together with our Pro-Am teammates on the Thursday evening.
Gordon is a focused, hard working professional who gives himself the best opportunity possible for success and is most deserving.
A quick turn around after our final round on Sunday as we flew from Zurich to Hamburg in the evening.
Monday we had a relaxing day playing tourist with our friends Donna and Michael Harwood in Hamburg.
Another coach ride Monday evening from Hamburg airport to Schwerin and now getting settle in to begin practice rounds Tuesday in preparation for the WINSTONgolf Senior Open.
Thank you so much to everyone for your emails, posts, support and encouragement.
I really appreciate you taking the time to write.