Benjamin Poke is taking inspiration from two fellow countrymen who have topped the European Challenge Tour Rankings as he prepares for the Made in Denmark Challenge – Presented by FREJA.
The Dane, who currently occupies the 36th position in the season-long points race, says that it all starts with Denmark’s original Challenge Tour success story—the man who won the Rankings in 1995 and went on to become one of professional golf’s biggest stars.
“Thomas Bjørn, what can you say, he’s a Danish legend really, and put golf in Denmark on the world scene,” Poke said.
“You’re a damn good golfer to win 15 times on the European Tour, top the Challenge Tour, win Ryder Cups, become Ryder Cup Captain, the list goes on really, so it’s great to have those achievements in mind.
“Denmark has always had a pretty proud history on the Challenge Tour. The first tournament here was back in 1991, which was the year I was born.
“Denmark, through the Challenge Tour, have produced some really good players that have gone on to play really nicely on the European Tour. Bjørn obviously and last year Joachim B Hansen. It’s great to have those guys as role models to hopefully follow in their footsteps.”
Last year, the 28-year-old Hansen collected his second win of the season at the Made in Denmark Challenge, which along with three runner-up finishes and nine top tens, propelled him to become the second Danish player to be crowned Challenge Tour Number One.
Poke, who secured his Challenge Tour card by finishing third on the satellite Nordic League last year, has shown signs he is ready to take his game to the next level.
In 11 starts this season, the 27-year-old has made seven cuts, and notched an impressive fourth place finish at the innovative Andalucía – Costa del Sol Match Play 9.
The top 40 players in the Rankings will be eligible to play the limited-field Rolex Trophy in two weeks’ time, which makes the Made in Denmark Challenge – Presented by FREJA even more exciting for Poke, who is keen to show his home country off to his peers.
“I’m excited to be back playing in Denmark,” he said. “It’s a great course for the occasion and I’m looking forward to a great week.
“It’s always special to play on home soil and feel the support from the Danish people and it would be really special to play well or end up capturing a win this week like JB did last year.”
The Made in Denmark Challenge – Presented by FREJA is set to begin tomorrow at 7:30 am local time, with Poke commencing his pursuit of the title at 9:20 am.