Laura Gomez Ruiz
Spain’s Laura Gomez Ruiz held off a late charge from Germany’s Greta Isabella Voekler to claim a one-shot victory at the Golf de Montauban L’Estang. The Spaniard led from start to finish on the final day, eventually carding a one-under round of 71 to finish seven-under-par for the tournament and was ecstatic with her first victory in the LET Access Series.
“It feels great, I had a lot fun out there, there was a lot of people watching. So, it made it a really incredible event! I’m really happy about it”
Playing in the final group, the overnight leader made a great start to her round with a superb drive on the Par-5 second setting up an early birdie opportunity. The Spanish player eased any final day nerves as she holed out in style to steal an early march on her rivals at the top of the leaderboard. Gomez Ruiz, who also boasts a professional win on the Santander Golf Tour, played solid golf throughout the front nine, not dropping a shot despite several missed putts for birdie, and reached the halfway point looking comfortable at –1 for the day.
“I stayed patient. I missed a lot of putts today and I didn't get mad at all. I was just like 'OK, the next one will be...' And there were a lot of people showing support coming up to me and saying, 'let's go, let's go' and I am very happy... So many people it was great; families, everyone was out there today”
The back nine was a little more turbulent with two further birdies cancelled out by two dropped shots on holes 14 and 17. The latter of which cut her lead and gave hope to the chasing Voekler and clubhouse leader Nina Pegova. Despite the late hiccup, the Spaniard held her nerve on the 329-yard final hole reaching the green in two for a routine two-putt for the Montauban title – her first victory on the LET Access Series having turned pro less than a year ago.
Neuchatel Ladies champion Greta Isabella Voekler finished a shot behind Gomez Ruiz, six-under for the tournament, after a second successive round of 71 on the French course. Level par through the first nine, the German looked to be running out of steam after bogeys at 10 and 12 left her trailing her playing partner by four shots with just a few holes remaining.
The 22-year-old didn’t give up and at the Par-5 13th reached the green in two before holing a putt for eagle. The youngster couldn’t claw back the deficit, despite a birdie at the last, but continues to show why many see the German as one of the stars of the future.
England’s Hayley Davis began the day in a tie for second after a stunning –6 round of 66 in the second round. Unfortunately for the Englishwoman, two double bogeys contributed to a +3 round which meant she slipped to fifth position on the final leaderboard.
Russia’s Nina Pegova recorded a three-under 69, the joint lowest on the course, to finish in the top-3 for the second time on the LET Access Series. In her last outing at the Viaplay Ladies Finnish Open a fortnight prior, the 25-year-old claimed an impressive four-shot victory in Lahti, and proved it was no fluke with another fine performance this time around.
Next week, the players head to Belgium for the Belfius Ladies Open with a 40,000 Euro prize fund and crucial points in the season-defining Race to La Largue up for grabs. Taking place from June 27th - 29th the 2019 edition Belgian event will be held at the Cleydael Golf & Country Club in Aartselaar.