Ramsay reigns as King of the Mountains

02/09/2012 15:44:11
Richie Ramsay (-16) - Omega European Masters champion 2012  (Getty Images)
Richie Ramsay (-16) - Omega European Masters champion 2012 (Getty Images)
Richie Ramsay put all distractions to one side as he cruised to victory in the Omega European Masters with another masterful performance at Crans-sur-Sierre.

After carding six birdies in a bogey free third round, Ramsay secured his second European Tour title in convincing fashion courtesy of a 66 that lifted him to 16 under.

Marcus Fraser, Fredrik Andersson Hed, Romain Wattel and Danny Willett were four shots back in second, they and the rest of the field having been left trailing in the overnight leader’s wake.

Ramsay’s previous win came at the South African Open in December 2009.

“Between then and now I’ve made a lot of big decisions about my career. Today was vindication of that,” said the 29 year old.

“It’s an incredible place to play golf, so to win here is very special. You can get caught up looking at the scenery, but I knew I had a job to do here today.

“I had a clear goal in mind and all the way round I was imagining I was playing a round with my best mates from back home.

“I performed unbelievably well against two of the most in-form players around; Paul (Lawrie) is playing the golf of his life and Danny is one of the best young players around. So it was always going to be difficult, but I managed to pull it off.”

From the moment he extended his advantage to four shots with birdies at the third and fourth, victory was almost a formality for Ramsay, who showed no sign of nerves on a day when the sun finally shone brightly over the Swiss Alps.

Following a faultless front nine of 31, he dropped his first shot at the 13th, only to reclaim total control with a stunning eagle at the next when he found the cup with a delightful sand wedge.

“It was just what I needed, and it all came down to the endless hours of practice routines I went through over the winter," Ramsay added.

“Nobody's watching you and it can be a lonely business sometimes, but when you hit shots like that when you need them most, you know it's all been worth it."

A second bogey at 17 proved largely irrelevant as Ramsay followed in the footsteps of Paul Lawrie to give Scotland successive wins on the European Tour for the first time in more than a decade. Andrew Coltart and Colin Montgomerie acheived the feat in 2001.

Fraser, Andersson Hed and Wattel also went round in 66, a mark matched by Bernd Wiesberger - the man who pipped Ramsay to the Ballantine’s Championship in April.

“I played really well,” said Fraser. “It was nice to gradually gain some momentum through the week and find some form as the week went on.

“As the week went on, I got better and better and I couldn't be happier.”

Wiesberger was one of three players at 11 under, along with Felipe Aguilar and Lawrie, whose hopes of recording back to back wins quickly evaporated on the final day.

The Scot, who triumphed in last week’s Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles, drew level with Ramsay by eagling the first, only to slip out of contention with a quartet of bogeys, either side of a birdie at the sixth.

Veteran Swede Mathias Grönberg - the champion here in 1995 - finished eight under, having provided one of the highlights of the week with a hole in one at the 194 yard third.

Lee Slattery produced the round of the day to pull alongside Grönberg; his 64 featured eagles at the first and seventh.