Bernd Wiesberger - ALLIANZ Golf Open du Grand Toulouse champion (EuropeanTour)
Bernd Wiesberger became the second Austrian to capture a brace of Challenge Tour titles in France last week, and the 25 year old has now sets his sights on a third victory at this week’s Roma Golf Open 2010 presented by REZZA to earn instant promotion to The European Tour.
Twelve months ago at the exclusive OIgiata Golf Club, located on the outskirts of the Italian capital, home favourite Edoardo Molinari made it a hat-trick of titles with a one stroke victory over Belgium’s Nicolas Colsaerts, with Welshman Rhys Davies – who like Molinari has since entered the winners’ enclosure on The European Tour – back in third place.
And whilst Wiesberger does not expect to scale the heights reached by Molinari when he returns to European Tour duty next season after a one year absence, he does feel his all-round game is better equipped to cope with the rigours of a full season on the top tier, where he will join his compatriot Martin Wiegele, winner of two Challenge Tour events – including the dual ranking SAINT-OMER Open presented by NEUFLIZE OBC – earlier in the year.
The big-hitting Austrian recorded just two top 20 finishes in his debut season on The European Tour, finishing 172nd in the Race to Dubai with earnings of €94,750; but having nearly surpassed that figure already this season and climbed to fifth place in the Challenge Tour Rankings on the back of his win at the ALLIANZ Golf Open du Grand Toulouse last week, Wiesberger is determined to do himself justice next time around.
The man from Vienna said: “The plan at the start of the year was to finish in the top ten of the Rankings, so now that I’ve achieved that I can really enjoy the rest of the season. Hopefully I can continue my momentum this week and maybe even get another victory, which would be great because not many players have won three times in the same season.
“That’s my new goal for the last three events of the season. A lot can still happen between now and the Grand Final, but I’m quite a long way behind Alvaro [Velasco] at the top of the Rankings, so Number One might be just out of my reach. But you never know. Even if it doesn’t happen I still have to be very happy with my season, because I’ve guaranteed myself a great card for next season.
“I’m determined to do better, and last week in Toulouse especially gave me a lot confidence. It was very windy and also wet but I coped really well in the tough conditions – whereas on the main Tour last year, I really struggled to get round the course in places like Madeira and Gleneagles, where the wind makes scoring difficult. But last week, even though it was windy and raining at times, I still managed to control the ball much better, which was pleasing.
“My putting stroke is also much stronger and more consistent and reliable than it was last year, and that should definitely help me save a few shots. So as long as I continue working on that part of my game and get off to a better start next season, hopefully I can keep my card and then maybe even start thinking about winning on the main Tour. But that’s for another day – first of all I have to play well this week, and finish the season strongly. Then I can start getting ready for next season.”