Challenge Tour in Spain, Couvra is defender

After the first eight events of the season, spanning South Africa, India, and Abu Dhabi, the Challenge Tour arrives in Europe for the Challenge de España

by Andrea Gussoni
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Challenge Tour in Spain, Couvra is defender
© Getty Images Sport - Octavio Passos / Stringer

After the first eight events of the season, spanning South Africa, India, and Abu Dhabi, the Challenge Tour arrives in Europe for the Challenge de España. From May 9 to May 12, the competition will unfold athe Real Club Sevilla Golf in Spain, featuring five Italian athletes: Stefano Mazzoli, Luca Cianchetti, Pietro Bovari, Gregorio De Leo, and Aron Zemmer.

Challenge, schedule

The title defense falls to French golfer Martin Couvra, who triumphed last year as an amateur. However, all eyes are on Danish golfer Rasmus Neergaard Petersen, the current leader of the Road To Mallorca (order of merit).

Petersen, a professional for just ten months, has already clinched two recent victories—the Kolkata Challenge and the UAE Challenge—and is poised to make a significant leap to the DP World Tour with a potential third win this season.

The field in Seville includes eleven of the top twelve on the money list, showcasing a high level of competition. Among these are five of the other six season winners: Swedes Mikael Lundberg (ranking second) and Bjorn Akesson (eighth), Englishmen John Parry (fourth) and Garrick Porteous (seventh), and Welshman Rhys Enock (fifth).

Noteworthy competitors also include Frenchman Alexander Levy, who seeks a quick return to the DP World Tour after leaving last season, and English players David Horsey and Sam Hutsby. South African Wilco Nienaber and Martin Couvra are also notable for their current form and ranking.

Among the Italian players, Stefano Mazzoli, who is also competing on the Asian Tour this year, showed promise by finishing 25th in Abu Dhabi at the end of April. The other Italians, including De Leo, Zemmer, Bovari, and Cianchetti, are searching for consistency as the season progresses.

The tournament prize pool stands at $270,000, approximately 250,000 euros. This year marks the 25th edition of the Challenge de España, which originated in 1999 with a Spanish victory by Carl Sunesson. Despite the home field advantage, Spanish players have only clinched the title three additional times, with Santiago Tarrio being the most recent in 2021.

The tournament has retained its original name but has been sponsored various times. Martin Couvra is the only past winner participating this year in a field that has seen Rhys Davies (2009, 2015) as its only two-time champion. Notably, Brooks Koepka also left his mark on the event with a win in 2013.

Challenge Tour
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