Daniel Vancsik (EuropeanTour)
Daniel Vancsik is hoping that the memories of his glorious seven shot victory in the 2007 Madeira Islands Open – Portugal – BPI can spur him to a third European Tour win as he returns to Clube de Golf do Santo da Serra this week.
The Argentinian’s maiden European Tour triumph came at this week’s venue, where a final round 68 left him well clear of David Frost and Santiago Luna.
The 36 year old went on to win a second title two years later at the BMW Italian Open, adding to the three Challenge Tour victories he had collected prior to his European Tour breakthrough.
The Buenos Aires man is well versed in the art of winning golf tournaments and he believes he is capable of adding to his trophy haul this week if he feeds off the memories of his crowning moment in Madeira six years ago.
“I always get good memories when I go back to Santo da Serra as it was my first win on The European Tour,” said Vancsik, who is currently 34th in the Challenge Tour Rankings.
“It was a big moment for me because I had won on the Challenge Tour but this was the first time I’d done it against a much stronger field. The way I won was fantastic – by seven shots. You don’t see that very often. I just got on a roll and was high on confidence and felt I couldn’t do anything wrong.
“I think I can play well in Madeira and there’s no reason I can’t win it for a second time if I can get some putts rolling in.”
With its hilly terrain and high altitude, Clube de Golf do Santo da Serra – designed by Robert Trent Jones Snr – is a testing lay-out, but Vancsik is looking forward to the challenge and thinks his game is in good shape.
“The year I won it was very cold and windy,” he said. “The course was in a very different condition from what it was like last year, when it was very warm. The fairways and greens were very firm last year. It will probably be the same this year too.
“My game is not far short of what it was in 2007. My swing feels very comfortable and I’ve been working very hard over the winter. It’s good to see it paying off.”
Money earned at Clube de Golf do Santo da Serra counts towards the Challenge Tour Rankings - albeit capped at €500,000 - so this week is hugely important for players on the second tier.
A win would mean automatic promotion to The European Tour, while a strong finish would result in a significant climb up the Challenge Tour Rankings.
All three Challenge Tour winners from this season will be present at the Madeira Islands Open – Portugal – BPI, including Rankings leader Brooks Koepka, who sealed an incredible seven-shot triumph in the Montecchia Golf Open presented by POLAROID two weeks ago.
The American is joined by Gujarat Kensville Challenge winner Shiv Kapur, Barclays Kenya Open champion Jordi Garcia Pinto and François Calmels, the winner of the Challenge de Madrid.