Simon Thornton has won the Peak Performance Player of the Month final at The Players Club in Bristol by one stroke.
The Irishman – who won June’s player of the month award – collects the £10,000 first prize thanks to a two under round of 70 in testing conditions in the west of England, edging out fellow countryman Alan Murray and Dale Marmion who both finished on one under.
Thornton (Royal County Down) got off to an inauspicious start as the second player out with bogeys at the first and third holes putting him two under after three holes. He only managed to gain one shot back at the ninth to go out one over par. But he made an instant impression on the back nine with three straight birdies from the tenth – where he sank a 20-foot putt from off the back of the green – to move to two under. After 15 he was three under par but a dropped shot at the 17th gave him a 70 and put him ahead of Murray who was already in the clubhouse.
The players teed-off in the order they won their awards so Murray (Greystones GC) was the first player out as May’s winner of the award in the pro-am format organised by the clothing manufacturers. He put his marker down with three birdies on the front nine to attack the tenth at one under – and he should’ve moved to two under there but he missed a three-footer for a birdie and ended up going down the back level.
Dale Marmion (Eaton) looked in control of proceedings teeing off fourth as August’s winner, picking up a birdie on the second with further shots collected at five, nine, 11 and 12 to sit four under with six to play. But a bogey at 13 was followed by doubles at 14 and 15 to move him to one over and although he finished with a flourish when he chipped in at the last, he fell just short with his 71.
Matthew Ford (Marriott Tudor Park) won September’s award but was unable to keep his fine form going and finished fourth at two over – an eight on the par four ninth effectively ruling out his chances. Order of Merit leader and July’s winner Noel Fox (MMI) had a tough day too with a double bogey at the par four first contributing to a two over front nine which he couldn’t improve upon down the back, finishing with 75.
After a thoroughly enjoyable event for the players, things get serious on the Ivobank PGA EuroPro Tour as the Peak Performance quartet join the rest of the top 60 in the Order of Merit for the Les Bordes Tour Championships in France.
FINAL SCORES FROM THE PEAK PERFORMANCE PLAYER OF THE MONTH FINAL AT THE PLAYERS CLUB (par 72)
1st Simon Thornton 70
2nd Alan Murray 71 (on a count back)
3rd Dale Marmion 71
4th Matthew Ford 74
5th Noel Fox 75