On the opening day of the PGA EuroPro Tour season at Harleyford Golf Club for The IFX Payments Championship, it was Ashton Turner of Kenwick Park Golf Club who laid down a huge gauntlet for the field signing for a bogey-free round of 63 (-9) with seven birdies and one eagle to his name.
The card from Turner sent a statement out to the Tour being back underway on a day where conditions allowed for some sharp shooting on a course that can throw up a whole heap of problems. Turner finished in a flurry with three birdies on the spin going out for 31 (-5) for the former Open Championship qualifier a firm foothold in Marlow.
It’s a two-shot lead that Turner holds over his nearest competitors which is where Jamie Dick (AT Golf Coaching), Reece Samson (Bondhay Golf and Country Club), David Hague (Malton & Norton Golf Club), Dongwon Kim (X-ordinary management), Dan Brown (Romanby Golf Club / G4L), Cameron Phillips (Hindhead Golf Club) and Pavan Sagoo (Ealing Golf Club) all sit at seven under. Samson delivered a special back nine which saw him rake in six birdies whilst it was a case of what could’ve been for Dick who had ten birdies on the card spoiled by three bogies.
John Henry (Clydebank & District Golf Club) was one of the first players out for the season and he made the most of it with a bogey-free 66 (-6) including an eagle on nine which seemed to play favourable for most of the field throughout the day.
Calum Fyfe was the Pro-Am winner on Tuesday after a fine 64 and he followed that up with a 70 (-2) which could’ve been so much more if it wasn’t for a sprinkling of bogies on the card.
The standard set on the tour was epitomised with 99 players under par at Harleyford with the cut already looking to be around two under after only one day. Another notable round came in the form of Harleyford’s amateur invite Taylor Paul who put in a five under blemish-free day.
It was a welcome return to golf for many players who missed out on three-day tournaments last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic and it showed with the feel-good atmosphere around the golf course and scoring to match it. All players and staff have to report negative COVID-19 lateral flow test result prior to arrival onsite.
Tomorrow brings the second round of action from The IFX Championship where a cut will be made before the final round gets underway on Friday. Tee times can be found here.