The European Tour travels to Italy this week for the 70th Open D’Italia Lindt. Spain’s Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano defends the title at Golf Club Torino in Turin.
It’s the 70th running of this historic tournament. It was first contested in 1925 when Francesco Pasquali took the title. Since then many famous players have triumphed in the event, they include Sir Henry Cotton, Peter Thomson, Tony Jacklin, Bernhard Langer, Greg Norman and Sandy Lyle.
Last year at Royal Park i Roveri, Spain’s Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano took the title by two shots over Garth Mulroy of South Africa. The Spaniard closed with a superb 64 to record a four-round total of 24-under-par.
The tournament has a new sponsor this year in the shape of chocolate-maker Lindt. The competition is also visiting a venue that most of the field won’t have played before. The Golf Club Torino last played host to the Italian Open back in 1999 when Scotland’s Dean Robertson was the winner.
The event has attracted an impressive field and there will be a strong representation of home players. Francesco Molinari will be looking to win this event again – he took the title back in 2006. 20-year-old Matteo Manassero will also tee it up. He’ll be aiming to become the youngest winner of his home open.
“Outside the Majors it’s obviously the week I look forward to most, and this year is no different,” he said. “Golf is getting bigger in Italy all the time, and I’m sure this week will show how popular it is. It’s very exciting to be a part of that.”
Venue: Golf Club Torino, Turin, Italy
Date: Sep 19-22
Course stats: par 72, 7,208 yards
Purse: €1,500,000 Winner: €250,000
Defending Champion: Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano (-24)
Thursday 19 – Sky Sports 1 from 10.30am
Friday 20 – Sky Sports 1 from 10.30am
Saturday 21 – Sky Sports 3 from 12pm
Sunday 22 – Sky Sports 2 from 12.30pm
Gregory Havret – A former winner of this tournament, the Frenchman has shown great form in the last couple of weeks with a tied seventh in Switzerland then a tied third last week in Holland. Look for him to feature again this time out.
Oliver Fisher – The talented young Englishman played superbly for two rounds in last week’s KLM Open but then struggled over the weekend eventually finishing tied 11th. He’s been consistent over the last month, making his last five cuts. But he needs a big result and this could be the week.
David Horsey – Another player who comes into this week on the back of a good result – he was tied ninth at Kennemer and he closed with a fine 67 in tough conditions. He’s currently 61st on the Race to Dubai and will be aiming to move up.
Key hole: 17th. A long par four of 465 yards, turning from right to left. The tee shot must be accurate to allow a reasonable shot to the testing green that is set on two levels with a significant step between them. A stream runs along the left hand side of the green.
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