De Bruyn seizes very last chance and is promoted
Castanea Resort Championship 2022
Thanks to a dream round of 63 strokes (-8) on the final day of the Castanea Resort Championship, Jannik de Bruyn (-14) secured his first Pro Golf Tour title in the last event of the season ahead of Michael Hirmer (-12), who promotes to the Challenge Tour as the overall winner of the Pro Golf Tour Order of Merit. Besides the two Germans, three other players celebrate promotion.
Adendorf, Germany - What began in Egypt in mid-March at the start of the 2022 Pro Golf Tour season reached its final - and spectacular - climax this week in tranquil Adendorf near Lüneburg. After twelve tournaments in six different countries, the Castanea Resort Championship marked a fitting end to a successful season that saw a tournament winner, the winner of the Order of Merit and five advancers to the Challenge Tour in the final. A large number of players had the opportunity before the three rounds to clinch promotion in the final stretch with a win in Adendorf and the accompanying 7,800 points for the season ranking. Among them was Jannik de Bruyn, who had four top ten results on his record this season - but was still missing a top result for the top 5 in the overall ranking. The man from Mönchengladbach already finished third twice last year. So far, it had not been enough for the big coup on the Pro Golf Tour - until this important week in Adendorf.
Rather the hunter than the hunted
"I've led after two rounds a few times and then not been able to win," said De Bruyn, who did it the other way round this time. This time he went into the final day two strokes behind leader Alexandre Petit of France - and actually ended it in the lead. The 23-year-old from GC Hösel made a sensational start and recorded nine birdies in the first 13 holes. "I played very consistently right at the start and putted very well. I holed everything that was within reach. That gave me a lot of confidence." With a comfortable lead, he went into the final holes. De Bruyn was correspondingly relaxed. "It was really cool. I was comparatively calm the last few holes and was able to enjoy it. I'm starting to realise the impact of this win, so I'm definitely happy."
The first title on the Pro Golf Tour came at the ideal time for De Bruyn. "The season goal was definitely the Challenge Tour card and today was the last chance to achieve that goal." Thanks to the 7,500 points, he jumped to fourth place in the season standings. The Challenge Tour card is thus assured. "It's a logical and, above all, important step for me because I can now plan a full season."
One of the first well-wishers was De Bruyn's sister, who arrived on the eve of the final day to support her brother on this important day. "I think she was my lucky fairy today. She kept reassuring me when we were chatting on the round. That was very pleasant." They now head off on holiday together before the plane takes off for England next week, where De Bruyn will tee off on the Challenge Tour for the first time with his playing credentials in tow.
Hirmer wins season ranking
Michael Hirmer, De Bruyn's playing partner and closest rival on the final day of the Castanea Resort Championship, secured victory in the overall standings thanks to his second place in the season finale. The 25-year-old had won the Gradi Polish Open in June and consistently collected points throughout the year - the top position is the deserved reward of a very strong season.
Besides the two Germans, Jean Bekirian (France), Alan de Bondt as well as Yente van Doren (both Belgium) can also look forward to the Challenge Tour card. They will all start there in category 13b from 2023. Philipp Katich (Germany), Victor Veyret (France), Felix Schulz (Austria), Dario Antonisse and Mike Toorop (both Netherlands) will also get some starts on the Challenge Tour (category 17) next year. Marc Hammer, who finished eighth in the Order of Merit, secured his card thanks to his title win on the Challenge Tour.
Peter Zäh: "We can be very proud"
For the eighth time in a row, the season finale of the Pro Golf Tour took place on the Castanea master course at the Adendorf golf resort - and once again more than lived up to the high expectations. "As every year, we were very much looking forward to this week at the Castanea Resort and witnessed a worthy end to the season. From the quality of the course to the professional handling and support of all involved, we can be very proud of our long-standing partnership with Castanea. A big thank you to everyone who made this event possible and we are already looking forward to the 2023 tournament with great anticipation," said Peter Zäh, Managing Director of the Pro Golf Tour.
In the coming weeks, the Pro Golf Tour's Qualifying School for the 2023 season is still on the agenda. At GC Verden (5 to 6 October) and at GC Trier (11 to 12 October), 96 players each will try to earn a category for 2022.