The opening Pro-Am of the VP Bank Ladies Open 2019 was played on Thursday in spring-like conditions. The players will compete for the €45,000 prize fund, starting today at the second LETAS event of the year, with cooler temperatures and more humid conditions. The 102 professionals and 22 amateurs, will be aiming to finish in the top 48 and qualify for the 9-hole match plays on the final day. Also, accuracy is needed on the par-3 third hole, the title sponsor VP Bank will reward every hole-in-one on this hole with 50 grams of gold.
The breath-taking location for the sixth LETAS event in Eastern Switzerland is a favourite destination for the competitors and one of the hottest candidates is Austrian Sarah Schober, who won the only LETAS tournament played this year, the Terre Blanche Ladies Open, one month ago in southern France. The 27-year-old is one of the most renowned and experienced players on this tour, as she won the 2016 LETAS Order of Merit. Last week, Schober made the cut at the Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco, finishing in 13th final place in the Ladies European Tour event.
Nevertheless, the VP Bank Ladies Open will not be a walk in the park for Schober. Englishwoman Hayley Davis, who lost in a play-off to Schober in the South of France, is in Gams and looks forward to going one better this week. Elia Folch (Spain) and Chloe Leurquin (Belgium), who shared second place in Gams last year and also know the course best, are among the participants. Leurquin is one of the players who has travelled to eastern Switzerland with a good feeling that her current form is strong: The Belgian also made the cut last week in Morocco and finished 27th at the Lalla Meryem Cup. England’s Charlotte Thompson is also another player to watch, finishing 8th in Morocco, and Maria Fernandez from Spain who recorded a top 20 position.
With home advantage this week, the 18 Swiss women - eight professionals and eleven amateur players, are led by tournament ambassador Melanie Mätzler and Caroline Rominger, who both made the cut at the opening Terre Blanche Ladies Open in April.