Frenchman Philippe Lima secured his maiden professional victory at the Segura Viudas Challenge de España after a sudden death-play-off with Italy’s Alessandro Napoleoni at the windswept Torremirona Golf Club.
As winds of up to 30 miles per hour gusted across the 6780 yard par 72 terrain, Lima produced a fourth round display of control and consistency to fire a five under 67, for an aggregate total of 14 under par 274.
Napoleoni shot 73 to tie with Lima, but saw his hopes dashed as he mis-cued his drive at the first extra play-off, while Lima pounded his ball over 400 yards down the middle of the fairway, leaving himself a sand wedge approach to the par five, 18th.
That left Lima the simple task of pitching onto the edge of the green and two putting for the tile, and the first prize of €21,600, that takes hi to third place on the Challenge Tour Rankings.
“I thought my first putt in the play-off was going into the hole, but the wind just took it away. But that doesn’t mater – I am just delighted to win my first professional event here in Spain, which is a country I know and love,” said Lima, who was born in Paris to Portuguese parents.
“I have spent as lot of time in Spain, in Madrid, Seville and Galicia and it is an honour to win here. I played well throughout the day, but I thought that my double bogey at the 14th was going to cost me the tournament.
“The wind was so strong today and every shot was tough because we really couldn’t tell which way the wind was blowing on some of the holes.”
Germany’s Kariem Baraka took third place, with eight players tied in fourth position on 12 under par, including the Swede, Lief Westerberg, who maintains his Number One spot at the top of the Rankings as a result.
Baraka was delighted to finish third as he plays under the attachment of Torremirona Golf Club.
“It was such a tough day with the wind blowing so hard – I found it impossible to judge some of my yardages,” said Baraka. “But I am happy to have finished in third position because it is always nice to give something back to the people at Torremirona, who have supported me so much. I just hope that the Challenge Tour can return here next season.”