(Arras, France, June 18 2003) England’s Trish Johnson headlines the field at this week’s €275,000 Open de France Dames at Le Golf d’Arras in the Pas de Calais region of northern France.

Brooky – defending champ

But Johnson’s challengers will be of high quality and include defending champion Lynnette Brooky from New Zealand, who hopes to return to form after a mixed season so far, along with European number one Paula Marti from Spain, runner up here last year and back on Tour after a week’s break at home in Barcelona and Elisabeth Esterl from Germany, the Tenerife Ladies Open winner.

Despite occupying the top spot on last years order of merit, Marti has not won since the 2001 Ladies British Masters and is desperate to make The 2003 European Solheim Cup team in September. And along with the €41,250 first prize, the 40 points that accompany the win for any European player will be added incentive if they want to make Catrin Nilsmark’s 12 strong side.

One of those who most women’s golf fans will want to see make the Solheim Team without having to resort to one of the captain’s five wild card picks is Sweden’s Carin Koch, playing her second event of the year after giving birth to her second child last April.