Belgium's Chloe Leurquin won the final event of the LET Access Series, the Mineks Ladies Classic in sensational style at the National Golf Club on Saturday, winning for the first time as a professional and also earning her playing rights for the Ladies European Tour in 2014.
The young Belgian needed to perform well in the last event of the season, to move from 7th on the LETAS Order of Merit and into the top five, to earn automatic qualification to the LET. Leurquin struggled in the opening round to a three over par, 76 but recovered well yesterday to score 71 in tough, windy conditions, getting herself back in to contention. Leurquin played solidly on the final day, scoring one under par with a crucial birdie on the 18th hole, holing a long birdie putt from the back edge of the green.
Spain's Mireia Prat, who has enjoyed a very successful season on LETAS, joined Leurquin on even par with a final round of 73. Prat and Leurquin returned to the 18th hole for the play off, where the Belgian hit her approach shot within two metres and set up another birdie chance. Prat was unable to hole her birdie putt, leaving Leurquin to clinch the title. She commented, “At the beginning of the week I was really nervous. I didn’t start very well so I played +3 the first day. So after that, I told myself now you have nothing to lose, just enjoy and try to have fun on the course. It’s just a practice to final stage in Marrakech. And then I played well in the 2nd round and today was just amazing. Winning was a bonus.”
Denmark's Julie Tvede, the overnight leader, stumbled to a third round of 79, finishing in a tie for third place alongside Caroline Martens from Norway, who shot a closing 70, for a two over par total. Sweden's Louise Larsson finished in fifth position on her own at three over par.
Mireia Prat topped the LETAS Order of Merit, with Patricia Sanz Barrio from Spain in second, Denmark's Nicole Broch Larsen in third position and Chloe Leurquin and Switzerland's Fabienne In-Albon rounding out the top five places. These players will all be looking forward to competing on the Ladies European Tour next season.
A further fifteen players earned a place to the final stage of LET Lalla Aicha Tour School, which takes place at the Samanah and Al Maaden Golf Resorts from the 14 - 18 December in Marrakech, Morocco.