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Marco Penge embracing every opportunity as he realises dream of playing on DP World Tour

Marco Penge embracing every opportunity as he realises dream of playing on DP World Tour

Just two weeks after winning the Rolex Challenge Tour Grand Final supported by The R&A and the season-long Road to Mallorca Rankings double, Marco Penge is trying to enjoy every opportunity as he realises his dream of playing on the DP World Tour.

Marco Penge (11)

The Englishman, who will hit the opening tee shot at the Joburg Open on Thursday, arrives in South Africa after a life-changing six weeks saw him claim the top spot on the Challenge Tour's Road to Mallorca Rankings to earn his card for the 2024 season on the DP World Tour.

His second victory of the year at the season-ending event came just six weeks after he earned his first professional victory at the Open de Portugal at Royal Óbidos, which helped him earn his place in the Grand Final.

The 25 year old went on to secure an emphatic six stroke victory over Frenchman Tom Vaillant at Club de Golf Alcanada, following in the footsteps of countryman Nathan Kimsey to become the 13th Challenge Tour Number One to hail from England.

A fortnight on, Penge is planning to enjoy every opportunity get his debut season under way, while still reflecting on his biggest achievement to date.

"It still probably hasn't quite sunk in," he said.

"Five, six weeks back my season was not great and then I've won twice since then and obviously winning the Grand Final made me win the rankings. So it's an achievement that I'll never forget.

"First tournament of the year feels quite weird. Kind of only just finishing the season and then two weeks later kind of starting the season. But the feelings I've had so far, it's great to be where I always dreamt to be and nice to be hanging around some of the guys that have accomplished so much in the game."

"The Challenge Tour, it's been around for a long time and it, it's a development tour for the DP World Tour and to win a tour that's kind of in four or five years time, hopefully a lot of the guys that played last year will be doing well in the game. So to have kind of come up on top. Yeah, I mean it's unbelievable. And the past winners that have done that, it's nice to be in the same category as them, so it's great.

"I can't wait to get going. This season's going to be an unbelievable experience for me and there'll be moments that I'll never forget and moments that I can kind of cherish with my family, my team, and my friends. So I'll just be trying to enjoy every week as it comes and just make sure I have fun, really, because you never know how long you're going to be at this stage. And it's a great pleasure to be here and given the opportunity.

One specific thing Penge is carrying over from the Challenge Tour into his first season on the DP World Tour is his meticulous note taking ahead of the event.

Speaking to the DP World Tour, Penge said that he treats his yardage book like a bible, mapping out every green and making his notes colourful in order to feel as prepared as possible - something he hopes will help him perform in his first tournament of the season.

"I like to map every green," he said.

"So the green books are pretty good. Well, the course planners are pretty good, but there are slopes that will be probably missing on there and kind of note down everything I see that's kind of on there already and kind of just go over the slopes that they've got and just work out well. I want to miss it and stuff like that. So I kind of treat my yardage book as my Bible in a way, so I kind of like to make it all colourful and fancy. So yeah, it's like an ocd thing."

He will get his first round of the 2024 season under way at 06.20am local time, alongside Jaco van Zyl and fellow Challenge Tour graduate Ricardo Gouveia