SPANIARD Adri Arnaus returns to his Alps Tour roots this week as he prepares for the Euram Bank Open.
It will be his first appearance at the picturesque Golf Club Adamstal in the Austrian Alps.
Arnaus burst on to the professional golf scene in 2017. He won two events on the Alps Tour as an amateur, including the Grand Final at Golf Club des Iles Borromees, in the Italian Alps.
He also topped the Order of Merit that year to earn his place on the European Challenge Tour.
The following season he graduated to the European Tour after finishing inside the Top 15 on the Challenge Tour Rankings – winning the Ras Al Khaimah Challenge Tour Grand Final, in the United Arab Emirates.
Adri Arnaus said: “I definitely missed out on playing a beautiful golf course a couple of years ago.
“I love any course which is different to what we are used to – being here in the mountains with the tree lines is very special.
“It’s one of the coolest places I’ve been to so far this year,” said the Texas A&M University graduate.
“It’s so different. You can breathe in the nature everywhere you turn. I’m going to remember a lot of holes on this golf course.
“I’ve tried to make a schedule which looks good for the rest of the year,” added the 2017 Spanish Amateur Champion.
“It’s great we can get back to competition and hopefully play for titles on Sundays.
“Last year I wanted to get to the DP World Tour Championship, and hopefully I can get a bit higher up on the rankings this year.
“I had a good year last year and started pretty well this season, so I had some momentum,” added Arnaus, talking about the disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
“We had to reschedule everything and find new things to do,” said the 25-year-old who is now looking for his maiden European Tour win.
“Golf is a game where you don’t have to be on the range all the time, you can improve other aspects of your game.
“I’ve been focusing on the physical and mental aspects. Then when we were allowed to play golf in Spain again, I did that and got back in shape.”
And if that preparation will pays dividends if he can follow last week’s winner Marc Warren by winning in Austria, which hosts an event for a second week in a row.
Ewen hoping it’s Fergie time in Alps
GOLF Club Adamstal is situated in a valley in the Lower Austrian Alps.
And after hosting the Euram Bank Open on the Challenge Tour since 2018, it is now the venue for the second of two dual-ranking events.
Arnaus is pleased to have made the trip to Ramsau as the 2020 season continues, after missing out on the tournament two years ago.
Also in the field this week is Scotland’s Ewen Ferguson, who will be hoping to go one better than his runner-up finish at last year’s Euram Bank Open.
The 24-year-old carded an eight-under par 64, making a charge from 13th place at the start of the final day.
He finished as runner-up to compatriot Calum Hill alongside Portugal’s José-Filipe Lima.
Ferguson said: “There are a lot of good players right now in Scotland. Loads of good guys coming through.
“I think Marc Warren was very motivated by not doing well last year and getting on top of his game. There are loads of young Scots coming through.
“I think it’s a kick up the backside for the older guys and they’re pushing on.
“You look at leaderboards now and there seems to be a lot of Scots kicking around.
“It’s good for us, even having lunch you can chat to friends you’ve known for years. It makes it homely rather than it being hard on the road.
“You know you can bat ideas off each other and inspire each other. I played well here last year.
“I finished second and had a good run at it in the end. It was a good week for me. It’s been nice practicing here again.
“I know some of the places to go and places not to go, that could be quite helpful. I’m excited to get going.
Schneider hopes Austrian form continues
HOPING to carry on his form from last week’s Austrian Open is Germany’s Marcel Schneider.
The 30-year-old carded four consecutive rounds of 69 – dropping just four shots all week – to finish one stroke behind winner Marc Warren.
Schneider said: “I’m so happy to be back out and competing. My game was super solid.
“You could see from the scores, three-under four times and I just dropped four shots the whole week. Hopefully I can continue that.
“Something clicked there. Putting has never been the strength of my game. But it worked quite well last week.
“Hopefully I can ride that wave for a long time. I love the course, beside the walking, I really love the views from the fairways and the greens.
“You need a lot of tactics in your game,” added Schneider who won the 2018 Swiss Challenge
The Euram Bank Open will be governed by the European Tour’s comprehensive Health Strategy, as will all events for the remainder of the 2020 season.
The strategy relies on healthcare specialists Cignpost to deliver rapid on-site COVID-19 screening.
All players, caddies and on-site personnel will be tested in order to help mitigate the risk of new COVID-19 infections.
Participants will operate within national public health guidelines, including social distancing as well as following enhanced hygiene directives.
•To follow Adri Arnaus in the first round click here for live scoring.