Sensational Stirn takes second win
Stippelberg Open 2023
Zan Luka Stirn prevails in a thrilling final of the Stippelberg Open 2023. The Slovenian takes his second win of the season on the perfectly prepared course of the Golfbaan Stippelberg.
Bakel, Netherlands- Zan Luka Stirn secured his second win of the current season with an impressive performance over the three tournament days of the Stippelberg Open. At the first stop of the Pro Golf Tour's Dutch Swing - the overall winner of the three stops will receive a place on the starting list of the KLM Open 2024 on the DP World Tour - the Slovenian won by two strokes ahead of Linus Lang, Robin Smiciklas (both Germany) and Camille Bordone (France).
The Arkansas State University graduate only conceded four bogeys during the 54 holes on the sometimes difficult holes of the Golfbaan Stippelberg. For Stirn, who started the final round as the leader, rounds of 68, 64 and 66 and a total score of twelve under par were enough to bring the victory over the finish line. It was only with a birdie on the 18th that the 26-year-old finally decided a race for the title that was highly exciting right to the end.
"Victory something very special"
"I wanted to stay in the moment and focus on the here and now," said the winner, describing his recipe for success in Saturday's final. "Fortunately, I managed to do that very well. A victory is always something very special. That's what we put all the hard work into. The fact that it's now the second win makes it all the better."
In the process, Stirn was able to rely on a consistently stable game over all three days of the tournament at Golfbaan Stippelberg. "This course is very challenging, especially from the tee," he explained. "The landing zones are narrow and some tee shots are blind, so you need a lot of confidence in your swing."
The recipient of the €5,000 winner's cheque also had words of praise for the venue, whose Championship Course he described as "half links, half parkland". "I am a big fan of links golf, we used to spend many family holidays in Scotland. This type of golf suits me and that's another reason why I liked this course exceptionally well."
Stirn makes leap in season standings
With another triumph and four more top ten finishes this season, Stirn takes over the top spot in the Order of Merit. Andoni Etchenique (France), who finished the tournament in a shared 28th place, drops to second. Behind him, Christian Bräunig (Germany), Clement Guichard (France) and Tadeas Tetak (Slovakia) complete the top five.
Slowly but surely, the Pro Golf Tour season is entering the home stretch with three tournaments left. With only a few days to take a breather in between, the next two stops of the Dutch Swing are coming up: First, the title of the Staan Open will be contested at Golfbaan Westwoud (24 to 26 August), before the overall winner of the special classification can be crowned at the FaberExposize Gelpenberg Open (31 August to 2 September). The decision in the race for the five promotion places will be made at the Castanea Resort Championship from 4 October.