Monday, 09 July 2007

Gareth Paddison of New Zealand cruised to victory at the weather affected A.G.F. Allianz Open des Volcans – Challenge de France to record the first Challenge Tour success of his career.

After lightning and incessant rainfall had forced Challenge Tour Officials to suspend the completion of the fourth round until Monday morning, Paddison returned bright and early to record the most conclusive victory of the 2007 season, a six shot winning margin that left his fellow competitors playing for second place at the Golf des Volcans.

The 28 year old posted a final round of five under par 66 for an 11under 273 aggregate, with Sweden’s Leif Westerberg taking second place on five under 279 and the English pair of Chris Gane and Oliver Whiteley sharing third on two under 284.

Paddsion had established a four stroke lead with five holes to play when play was suspended for the third and final time on Sunday evening, and he extended that advantage further on Monday morning to secure the €20,800 top prize that helped him climb from 30th position to seventh place on the Rankings.

“I’m just delighted to get the first victory on the board,” said Paddison. “It has been a while coming – I have had chances in the past couple of seasons but not quite made it so it feels pretty good to get the first victory.

“There are a lot of people I have to thank, including Jason Floyd who I recently started working with and who has improved my game to the point where I was able to win this week. Hopefuly it’s the first of many victories and I can win on of those cards to The European Tour for next season.”

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