World Number Three Jon Rahm is excited to make his debut at the Open de España, one of the oldest and most celebrated tournaments in Continental Europe, when the Spanish sensation tees it up at Centro Nacional de Golf from April 12-15.
It has been a meteoric rise to the top of the world game for the 23 year old, and he will return to the familiar surroundings of the Madrid venue, which is the home of the Royal Spanish Federation, for the first time as a professional.
The two-time European Tour winner utilised the facilities as a junior player, combining his studies and golf during a stellar amateur career, before going on to represent Arizona State University in the American collegiate system and win 11 titles – reaching World Amateur Number One along the way.
Now, the Basque native is relishing the opportunity to return to his golfing roots and Spain’s top non-membership public golf course, which provides accessible and affordable facilities to the nation’s sporting public.
Rahm said: “I spent my last two years of high school at Centro Nacional de Golf. I’ve played the course many times and that was where I formed as a golfer. I’m really looking forward to it and hopefully one day to be the Open de España champion.
“I haven’t played there for six years, so I’m not sure how much will have changed, but I hit it way different than I used to when I played there. I’ll be familiar with the golf course but still it will be a little bit different. I have memories of when I was 16 or 17 years old but I hit it longer and I hit it better now, so hopefully the course seems easier than it did back then.”
Rahm had a remarkable breakthrough season on the European Tour in 2017, winning two Rolex Series events, including a record-breaking victory at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open hosted by the Rory Foundation in July and a dramatic triumph at the season-ending DP World Tour Championship, Dubai in November.
Spanish golf fans will be able to watch Rahm alongside fellow home favourites Rafa Cabrera Bello, Pablo Larrazábal, Alvaro Quirós, Adrian Otaegui, and Jorge Campillo for free HERE at the 91st edition of the event.
Rahm said: “I’m very much looking forward to playing in Spain again and at this event. The Spanish Golf Federation have done so much for me. I know Sergio has won the tournament, Seve has won the tournament, so it would mean a lot to me to be crowned national champion as a professional. It would be amazing.
“Hopefully I can just have a good week and be national champion once again. I have been as an amateur in many different categories and it would mean the world to me to be able to do it as a professional.”
For more information please visit europeatour.com or http://opendegolf.es