Lalla Aicha Tour School Pre-Qualifying A started on the 28th November last year with a total of 41 players from 15 different countries, compared to 51 players in this edition. They all came to play in the Red Course at Royal Golf Dar Es Salam and the top 18 went forward to Final Stage. This year, these players will play this first Qualifier in the Blue Course, instead, and the final number of players who will go through final stage will be announced shortly.
Royal Golf Dar Es Salam is a 45-hole golf course built in 1971 and designed by prestigious golf course designer Robert Trent Jones Sr. Ideally placed in the heart of a cork oak forest, “La Maamora”, the Royal Golf Dar Es Salam is a wonder of its kind: technicality, quality and a landscape of incomparable beauty. The whole course occupies a total of 350 hectares, including the clubhouse and the 45 holes, which are divided into three courses; the Red Course and Blue Courses, both with 18 holes, and the Green Course, a 9-hole course designed for beginners but also allows practice for the short game.
The Red Course, known as the Championship Course, is a long course and features over 90 bunkers. The main characteristic of its greens is that they are raised and protected by many bunkers, which make them appear like real fortresses. The Blue course is entertaining and varied. It hides its greens behind dog-legs and fairway turns. If the Red Course is particularly long, the Blue course can turn into a long run as well. Par eleven is a par 4 for 405 meters, as captivating in its beauty as it is in its difficulty. Trees and brambles narrow the fairway flanked by a lake with two large mimosa trees which will not stop the ball, obviously intended to finish in water!
Royal Golf Dar Es Salam was initially ranked within the top 10 golf courses in the world and within the top 30-50 during the 1980´s. Nowadays this course is considered as “the” golf course in Morocco.
Germany´s Leigh Whittaker became the first winner in 2013 with total of 300 shots (+8) followed by England´s Hannah Ralph.
Leigh Whitakker has played in 11 events this year and is currently #85 on the Order of Merit. Her highlight has been her career first top-ten finish at the South African Women's Open, where she was tied for 8th.
Another 91 players attended Lalla Aicha Tour School Pre-Qualifiers B and C from 5th-8th December last year. This year, over 110 players will attend the other remainig Pre-Qualifiers, taking place in Rabat and China.
A percentage from each qualifier field (to be announced after the last player in each qualifier has teed off for her first round) will advance to Final Qualifying and join the players who have already qualified directly, which will include LET and LETAS members exempt from pre-qualifying plus any amateur entered from the top 25 of the Women’s World Amateur Rankings.
Stay tuned for a new exciting week and to meet the future stars of the Ladies European Tour.