FJ loyalist Ricardo Santos (XPS-1 & StaSof)
fired a stunning nine under par 63 on home soil in the final round of
the Madeira Islands Open – Portugal to claim his maiden European Tour
The 29 year old delighted the home crowds as he overhauled the
overnight leader and withstood the challenge of the rest of the field to
finish four shots clear on 22 under par – a record low total for the
event. Santos, a 2011 Challenge Tour graduate, produced a nerveless,
flawless performance when it mattered most, however, sinking a monster
putt on the 17th to all but guarantee victory and then adding gloss to
the finish with another birdie at the last.
He is the first Portuguese player to win a European Tour event in his
home country, and he said: “It is very emotional and I haven’t got the
words to describe how I feel. To win my first European Tour event in
my own country is very special. The putt on the 17th was unbelievable,
and I knew then that victory was mine."
Santos was 105th in The Race
to Dubai heading into this event, largely thanks to finishing tied tenth
in the Avantha Masters in February, but rises to 50th with the €112,500
earned for this victory.