Getting to know our rookies in 2014: Nicole Garcia is one of 11 members from South Africa and one of the two rookies from the country this season. Nicole has already played in two LET events this year: ISPS Handa New Zealand Open hosted by Christchurch and the Lalla Meryem Cup.
Here is her first rookie blog following the Lalla Meryem Cup:
"My name is Nicole Garcia, I went to tour school for the first time at the end of last year (2013). I received a 9b category and was really excited to get my first year on tour going. Two of my close friends, Kim Williams and Nobuhle Dlamini also qualified at the same tour school which made the year ahead even more exciting.
I started off the season by going to New Zealand to play ISPSA Handa classic in Christchurch. I stayed with the most unbelievable family who showed me around Christchurch and came to support me in the tournament. I met a couple of girls there for the first time and had a fellow South African on the bag which was a lot of fun. I had missed the cut off date for entries to this tournament (rookie mistake) so I decided to write to the promotors for an invite, not expecting anything as I had only just received a conditional card for the LET. Needless to say, a couple of hours later I received a reply to say that my invite request had been accepted and I was going to play in New Zealand.
A couple of weeks later I was off the the Lalla Meryem Cup in Morocco which was a great experience. I felt a little bit overwhelmed by the tournament and was really nervous the first couple of days. I didn't make the cut but I learnt a lot from the other girls and the other South African girls were so helpful and friendly, they made me feel at home. Stacey Bregman is my "big sister" this year and I couldn't be happier. I can ask her anything and she is always willing to give advice.
We had a 3 hour rookie meeting before the tournament started which went surprisingly quick. This was great as it answered so many questions and introduced everyone that we needed to know. I also got to meet the other rookies and I didn't feel so alone. However I didn't come prepared to stand outside for the rules introduction, it was so cold and I was wearing golf clothes suitable for mid summer! Going make sure I'm prepared for everything in future!
The first round of the tournament I was feeling incredibly nervous but as the round went on I felt a lot better. I made quite a few mistakes on the course those first two days that I should never have made, but it was a blessing in disguise as I got to go watch the top players like Lee-Anne pace and learn what I needed to to be become a better player.
I'm looking forward to Turkey and can't wait to see everyone on tour again:)"