(A Coruña, Spain, May 26, 2004) The Robe di Kappa Ladies European Tour swings back into action this week at the €275,000 Union Fenosa Open de España Femenino Xacobeo 2004 at Club de Golf de La Coruña on the North West coastline of the Iberian peninsula.
|Diana Luna – A Dassu protégé|
The following week, Sweden’s Cecilia Ekelundh restored order for the over 25’s when she won after a thrilling final round in the Portuguese Ladies Open, but again, the youth were not far behind as compatriot Linda Wessberg, a 23-year-old prospect from Gothenburg, whose swing shares many traits with world number one Annika Sörenstam, finished in second place and German rookie Anja Monke closed in seventh spot.
“They are a different breed nowadays,” said Australia’s Karen Lunn, the 1993 Women’s British Open Champion and order of merit winner, who has been earning a living on the Tour since 1985.
“Women’s golf has come a long way since I joined and the young players nowadays are coming out prepared to face a life on Tour and it seems they are ready to win as soon as they come out.
“The Federations are doing a great job, especially in Spain, Italy and Sweden and they are preparing the girls in an excellent fashion. It’s tremendous for our Tour to see so much talent coming through year after year.”
While the more established names of women’s European golf have to contend with the tide of precocious talent, they are still very much a part of the eclectic mix that is the LET.
On home soil again after a disappointing season on the LPGA Tour is Spain’s Raquel Carriedo, who it could be argued, is one of the primary reasons why there is so much interest and development in Spanish women’s golf.
In 2001, Carriedo and her compatriot Paula Marti won five times between them with Carriedo winning the coveted European order of merit title convincingly. But it has been a struggle with confidence for the two-time Solheim Cup player since heading to the LPGA Tour.
Once with a steely focus and a killer instinct to win in the highest of company, Carriedo has lost her confidence with a game she once played with metronomic consistency. But the 33-year-old from Zaragoza is determined to try and find her focus and win again, aware that the competition is now coming from the younger players.
“It would be nice to win again, to win any tournament, especially here,” said Carriedo, Spain’s most successful female player.