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Andalucia Masters 2022

Real Club Valderrama hosts the  Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters from October 13-16, 2022. © Michelle Chaplow
Real Club Valderrama hosts the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters from October 13-16, 2022.

Andalucia Masters 2022 at Valderrama - 13th to 16th October 2022

Adrian Otaegui (Spain) has won the Andalucia Masters 2022 - Day Four

Adrian Otaegui (Spain) has won the Andalucia Masters 2022 with an astonishing 19 under par over the four-day tournament. On the final day he gained three strokes. Having birdies on 4th, 5th, 9th, a bogey on the 11th and then to the delight of the spectators a long birdie putt on the 18th. This secured him a six stroke lead and his fourth DP World Tour title.

Joakim Lagergren (Sweden) (-13) had picked up three strokes today and took second place to climb up the DP World Tour Rankings from 127th in the standings at the begining off the week and now moves into the top 50.

Min Woo Lee (Australia) (-10) was one under par today placing him in third place. Angel Hidalgo (Spain) (-8) the 24 year old local hero from Marbella lost two strokes today and dropped to fourth place. Even so it must have felt like a championship win to Angel. This moved him to 88th on the DP World Tour Rankings.

Adrian Otaegui said afterwards, "I feel so happy to have my first win in Spain in front of these crowds on my favourite golf course in Spain. It’s unbelievable. I’m happy with everything, the week was perfect. I just tried to play my game, tried to play as if I had just teed off being all square. Just tried to beat the others, stay focused and play every hole with the same intensity."

The whole week the crowds were absolutely amazing, especially yesterday and today. The scenery was amazing with the narrow fairways, the cork trees and all the spectators, all the kids. I would like to thank Valderrama for hosting us. I always feel like I’m at home when I’m here. I’m just so happy to have my first victory in Spain. It’s my favourite golf course in Spain and probably in the world right now. I love playing here, it’s just a garden and it is very special for me to have my first victory in Spain in Valderrama.

The plan was to start strong, forget the shot difference I had and just try to beat the others. I started good, had a birdie chance on the first and on the second, had a par save on number three. Two very good putts on four and five gave me a little bit of momentum and just tried to keep pushing. I played very well until the end. A couple of putts that didn’t drop on the back nine, but I tried to follow the plan and I think I did well.

The Andalucía Masters 2022 was played in unusually favourable conditions. Almost no wind each day, sunny and very clear visibility for the fist three days, this is reflected in the results. The -19 was also a tournament record beating the -18 record set by Mark James in the 1988 Volvo Masters.

Andalucia Masters final day Sunday the first golfers match set off at 08.49 hrs prompt. Weather at Valderrama today was overcast this morning and sun breaking through in the afternoon, it was warm and almost no wind. The overnight leaders as usual were in the last match and teed off at 12.50 hrs and finished at 17.47. The leading team benefited from strong local support following the last two matches.

Day Three Report

Adrián Otaegui (-16) was the star of the third day of the Andalucía Masters. The player from San Sebastian signed a card of 64 strokes (-7), which overall after three days is 16 under par. This is a six shot lead over Angel Hidalgo and the Swedish Joakim Lagergren on ten under par.

More about Andalucia Masters 2022 - Day Three


Day Two Report

Another beautiful calm almost windless weather conditions for Friday the second day of Andalucia Masters at Real Club Valderrama, Sotogrande.

Angel Hidalgo 24 years who lay in 21st place overnight on thew first day with one under par, was one of the early starters (08.40 hrs), scored a tournament record eight under par with 63 strokes. (62 is the Valderrama course record.) This put him in the lead with nine under par at the tournament half-way point.

Starting on the 10th he made a birdie on the 11th then a hat trick on the 16th, 17th and 18th. It was still mid-morning. Angel was growing in quiet confidence as the spectators were starting to realise what was happening. A small following grew on his second nine where he delighted them with four more birdies on the 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th. "It was the first time I played with that number of persons following me."
More about Andalucia Masters 2022 - Day Two

Day One report

The perfect calm conditions ensured that by noon leader David Horsey, English golfer who has already won four tour events between 2010 and 2015 was leading with four under par by noon. However a double bogey on the seventh knocked him back but steady play and three more birdies meant he finished the first day at five under par along with four other golfers. More about Andalucia Masters 2022 - Day One

Matt Fitzpatrick, already with a major under his belt after winning this year's U.S. Open, is defending his Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters title at the iconic Real Club Valderrama in Sotogrande from 13th to 16th October 2022. More about Matt Fitzpatrick at Andalucia Masters 2022


Cabrera Bello among stars confirmed for Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters

Ryder Cup player and Rolex Series winner Rafa Cabrera Bello is amongst the international stars who will tee it up at the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters from October 13-16, 2022.The 38 year old is aiming for a first title at the iconic Real Club Valderrama and more success on home soil after securing his fourth DP World Tour win at the ACCONIA Open de España last season.

Rafa Cabrera Bello is very much at home in Valderrama © Michelle Chaplow
Rafa Cabrera Bello is very much at home in Valderrama © Michelle Chaplow

He joins a field that includes the defending champion and U.S. Open winner Matt Fitzpatrick of England and a host of fellow DP World Tour winners, including rising Spanish star Adri Arnaus, who claimed his maiden title this season at the Catalunya Championship.

There will be two sets of brothers teeing it up, with eight-time DP World Tour winner Fitzpatrick joined by his younger sibling Alex, who is playing in the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters for the first time after making his professional debut this season. They are joined by talented Danish twins Nicolai and Rasmus Højgaard, who now have five DP World Tour wins between them following Nicolai’s victory in Ras al Khaimah earlier this season.

The 1997 Ryder Cup course will also welcome two young players who have had recent success at host venues for golf’s greatest team competition. Scotland’s Robert MacIntyre claimed the DS Automobiles Italian Open title at upcoming 2023 course Marco Simone Golf and Country Club and was followed a week later by Guido Migliozzi of Italy, who triumphed in the Cazoo Open de France at Le Golf National - the scene of a memorable victory for Team Europe in 2018.

Further 2022 DP World Tour winners who will be in the field in Sotogrande include history-making Adrian Meronk - the first player from Poland to win on Tour - well-travelled stars Ryan Fox from New Zealand and China’s Wu Ashun, and two-time winners Thriston Lawrence of South Africa and Scotland’s Ewen Ferguson.

Rolex Series winners Min Woo Lee of Australia, South Africa’s Brandon Stone and Danish Ryder Cup player Thorbjørn Olesen, who recorded his sixth DP World Tour win this season at the Betfred British Masters hosted by Danny Willett, will also tee it up in Andalucía.

The exciting week of the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters action will begin with the penultimate event in the G4D Tour season, as ten of the world’s best golfers with a disability - including Spain’s Juan Postigo Arce - take on the same set up as the professional field over two rounds on Monday and Tuesday. The seven-event series then concludes at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

The tournament will continue to play its part in the DP World Tour’s Green Drive initiative, with the return of the popular beach clean, which last year saw Spanish players Alejandro Cañizares and Santiago Tarrio join volunteers and students from schools in the area to clean waste from nearby Sotogrande Beach.

Fitzpatrick returns to the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters

Matt Fitzpatrick, already with a major under his belt after winning this year's U.S. Open, will defend his Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters title at the iconic Real Club Valderrama from 13th to 16th October 2022. 

Last year the English player recovered a three-stroke deficit on the historic course of Sotogrande and finished the tournament with a brilliant round of 69 strokes without bogeys to take the seventh of his eight DP World Tour titles. 

The two-time Ryder Cup European Team member claimed his first DP World Tour victory in 2015 as a rookie, and added to his impressive haul this June by winning the U.S. Open, his first major. Fitzpatrick will arrive at the 1997 Ryder Cup venue in great form, having not only won at The Country Club at Brookline but also racked up ten other top tens on the DP World Tour and PGA Tour, including a runner-up finish at last week's DS Automobiles Italian Open.

He will be joined at Valderrama by his brother Alex, who will be making his debut at the eighth edition of the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters. The 23 year old also played in the Italian tournament last week, after making his professional debut in July at the Horizon Irish Open.

"I'm really looking forward to defending my Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters title," said Matt Fitzpatrick. "Valderrama is such a challenge and winning at such a historic venue is always memorable, but the way the win came last year, staying patient on Sunday and getting rid of the bogeys, made it even more special.

"I've had a great season and the icing on the cake was definitely the U.S. Open. However, there is still a lot at stake, especially now that the race for Ryder Cup points has started, and I'm looking forward to another great week in Sotogrande".

The exciting week of the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters will begin with the penultimate tournament of the season on the G4D Tour, where ten of the best players in adaptive golf (including Spain's Juan Postigo Arce) will take on the same course as the professionals in two rounds on Monday and Tuesday. This seven-tournament circuit will culminate in the DP World Tour Championship in Dubai, the final event of the season.

Once again, the tournament will be part of the DP World Tour's Green Drive initiative, and a new Torreguadiaro beach clean-up will take place. Last year, Spanish professionals Alejandro Cañizares and Santiago Tarrío joined forces with local volunteers and students to clean up this beach in the vicinity of Sotogrande.

Real Club Valderrama sets the bar high for sustainability

Ahead of the 2022 Andalucía Masters, Real Club Valderrama continues to take measures that make clear its absolute commitment to the environment and the use of natural resources. The 2022 measures include the construction of a new lake to support the irrigation.

In 1995 Real Club Valderrama was one of the eight clubs that participated in a pilot project of EGA the ecological unit, assisted and co-financed by the European Commission, for the development of an Environmental Management Program. Shortly thereafter, in 1997, it achieved the milestone of being the first club in Europe to achieve environmental certification from Audubon International, the most important entity that endorses the commitment of golf courses to the natural environment. The Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program (ACSP) monitors the implementation of best practices in the maintenance of golf courses to care for biodiversity and environment, addressing key aspects such as water use and conservation, environmental and wildlife management, the reduction of chemicals and fuels, and the communication of ecological values.

In recent years Real Club Valderrama has implemented a number of initiatives to optimize and save water consumption, such as the installation in 2016 and 2017 of a new fully digitized irrigation system to regulate each sprinkler on the course, the implementation of hardness and humidity sensors on the greens that allow irrigation to be regulated according to needs, and the replacement of many areas of grass with mulch (crushed cork oak bark). These rough areas shaded by trees practically do not come into play and have made it possible to eliminate more than 300 sprinklers.

However, Valderrama’s highlight has been the construction of a new lake to the right of the 11th hole to be used for irrigation. The lake will collect rainwater and water from the course drain, it will be filled during the winter and will provide irrigation water during the summer months when consumption peaks occur.

Before the construction of this 58,000 m3 lake, almost 70 cork oak trees were transplanted to other areas of the golf course in order to carry out the work while respecting the forest mass. In total, around €600,000 was invested in the lake which will serve as a habitat for many birds that migrate through the Gibraltar Strait.

"At golf courses we have an obligation to improve our commitment to environmental sustainability. As an industry, we must stay ahead of the critics and improve our processes to become a benchmark in natural resource management. The commitment of the courses should not be limited to mere environmental certifications, and we must reinforce our message with investments that clearly demonstrate the path we are going to follow regarding the management of our environment and resources," explains Javier Reviriego, general manager of Real Club Valderrama.

Valderrama’s environmental includes 527 flora and fauna species on the course. The cork oak is the most famous symbol of the course and even features on the Andalucía Masters trophy.   The course has 359 known plant species, of which more than 90% are native plants of the Mediterranean region. There are also 105 different species of birds and thirteen species of mammals, with genets, otters, badgers and mongooses the most common. They are cared for and monitored by a team of experts who track and monitor these species, in addition to protecting habitats and sanctuaries located in the course, designated as "environmentally sensitive areas" when they contain endangered species of flora and fauna.

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