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Issue:- 28 July 2011

Tommy Fleetwood Returns to Formby Hall

SOUTHPORT and Sefton’s growing worldwide reputation as England’s golfing capital has been given another boost with the news that Formby Hall Golf Resort & Spa has secured a PGA EuroPro Tour slot for a 3rd successive year.

Formby Hall, home of the UK’s only PGA residential golf academy is to host the PGA EuroPro Tour this August (2011).

Since opening in 2006 the golf resort and spa has been the stage for the Challenge Tour, European Seniors Tour and will be hosting the world’s leading development tour for the 3rd time this August (2011).

The EuroPro Tour, which allows young golfers to take their first step on the professional golf ladder, returns to Formby Hall from 1 August to 5 August 2011.

Last year, the 54 hole tournament attracted hundreds of visitors over four days, with more than 25 teams competing in the pre-Tournament Pro-Am event.

Tim Cowell, marketing manager at Formby Hall Golf Resort & Spa, said:- "We’re delighted to be extending our association with the PGA EuroPro Tour. Last year was a great success in terms of quality of golf played, the crowd attracted and the awareness raised. This year we hope to build on the success and continue to establish Formby Hall as a great tournament venue."

Danny Nickless, Operations Manager for the PGA EuroPro Tour, echoed Cowell’s comments:- "It’s great to be taking the Tour back to Formby Hall. With its abundance of lakes and water features it provides a very stern test for players and was one of the favourite courses of the 2010 Tour."

Golf Manager, Mark Williams added:- The course is yet again in great condition and will provide a true golfing test for the "competitors. Ahead of the event players will be able to prepare in style and make the most of our academy practice facilities We are also delighted to have Tommy Fleetwood playing in this year’s event.  It will be a treat for our members and other local golfers to come and watch Tommy in action as a professional following his successful amateur career, as a club we follow Tommy’s progress closely on the Challenge and European Tours and wish him well during the tournament." added Williams.

The quality of the facilities at Formby Hall has also recently been acknowledged by the English Golf Union who have awarded Formby Hall the prestigious title of:- "Golf England Regional Performance Centre."  Williams explained:- "The EGU and EWGA have been utilising our driving range, short game area, teaching room and golf courses for some time now for their elite players. We were thrilled when they presented us with this accolade and it sits well alongside our PGA Academy status." It seems a natural progression for the resort to receive this recognition and is true testimony to the dedication and hard work of the Golf Team and to the directors of Formby Hall who had the vision to create this facility.   The return of this prestigious event further adds to the regions considerable reputation for hosting top events. The British Amateur, the greatest amateur event in the world, took place at Hillside earlier this year to mark the club’s centenary."

The Ladies Golf Union and IMG Confirms The Royal Birkdale Golf Club as the Venue for the 2014 Ricoh Women’s British Open

THE Royal Birkdale Golf Club will host the Ricoh Women’s British Open in 2014, continuing the Championship Committee’s commitment to ensure that the World’s best women players showcase their talents on the World’s best golf courses in years to come.

The Royal Birkdale Golf Club will host its 6th Women’s British Open when the Championship is staged there in 2014, continuing a strong association with the event that goes back to 1982 when Marta Figueras-Dotti took home the coveted title. The Championship returned in 1986 when England’s Laura Davies triumphed. Sophie Gustafson won in 2000 and five years later Korea’s Jeong Jang claimed her first professional victory by defeating Gustafson and another Korean, Young Kim, by four shots on 16 under par 272. In 2010 Yani Tseng, Number One on the Rolex Rankings, came out on top.

This celebrated club has a rich heritage in hosting the most important golf tournaments in the world and, in addition to 5 Women’s British Opens, has also welcomed 2 Ryder Cups in 1965 and 1969 and nine Open championships, the last won by the popular Irishman, Padraig Harrington in 2008.

As the only women’s Major currently played outside the USA, the Championship Committee has demonstrated its commitment to ensuring that the Ricoh Women’s British Open visits only world class championship courses and this celebrated venue fits the brief to a tee.

Yani Tseng recently added the Wegmans LPGA Championship to her haul of four Major titles and, at the age of 22 years 5 months 3 days, is the youngest player ever- male or female – since Young Tom Morris in 1872 to amass four Majors. She expressed delight at the news that the Championship would be returning to Royal Birkdale:- "Of course I am a little biased, but I think Royal Birkdale is an unbelievable course and I feel so proud to have won there. It has hosted so many great Championships and I look forward to returning there in 2014 where I hope I will win again."

  Michael Hadden, Captain of Royal Birkdale Golf Club added:- "We are very much looking forward to the return of the Ricoh Women’s British Open in 2014. The positive feedback from our members and the spectators after last year’s Championship was universal and we look forward to welcoming the world’s best women back in 2014 to show us how it is done."

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