England’s David Horsey kept the chasing pack at bay to win his fourth European Tour title. He finished the Made in Denmark at Himmerland Golf & Spa Resort two shots clear of a group of four players.
Horsey led the tournament after a first round of 63 and he still had his nose in front with one round to play. The 30-year-old went into Sunday one stroke clear of Australia’s Terry Pilkadaris.
Horsey lost his grip on the lead briefly during the front nine of the final round as Pilkadaris moved ahead. But the Australian faltered with two bogeys and then a disastrous double bogey on the 15th.
Although two ahead with three to play, Horsey didn’t make things easy for himself. He three-putted the 16th from eight feet to give Soren Kjeldsen a chance. After Horsey’s blip, the Dane was just one behind, with a chance to post a score ahead of the Englishman.
But Kjeldsen bogeyed the last, to give Horsey some breathing space. He parred the home hole to claim the title by two shots.
“I was a little bit disappointed with myself on 16, but managed to regroup and focus coming down those last couple of holes” said Horsey “I left myself a very tough putt on 17 but to par the last as well was perfect.”
Four things we learned at the Made in Denmark:
1. David Horsey’s wire-to-wire victory means he now has four career wins on the European Tour. His first success on the circuit came in the BMW International Open of 2010, and he went on to win the Trophee Hassan II in Morocco in 2011 and the 2014 Russian Open. Horsey had been struggling somewhat this season and had only one top-10 finish on Tour — he was languishing well down the Race to Dubai standings. The victory has pushed him to 56th on that list and to 164th on the Official World Golf Ranking, up from 274th.
2. Sweden’s Kristoffer Broberg was flying at Himmerland Golf & Spa Resort early on Sunday. The Swede carded a course-record 62 to move from a tie for 52nd at the start of the day into a tie for second by the end of it. Broberg beat the champion David Horsey by 11 shots over the final round. The other men to finish in a tie for second were Australians Terry Pilkadaris and Daniel Gaunt and Soren Kjeldsen of Denmark.
3. Soren Kjeldsen received incredible support from large galleries of home fans during the final round. 24,112 came through the gates on Sunday and a total of 86,498 during the week. The Dane was delighted to finish in a tie for second but couldn’t conceal his disappointment at being unable to secure the win. He felt he had given himself a good chance but let it slip with missed putts on the 11th and 14th holes then a bogey on the last. “I felt like I did all the hard work to get myself in position, but I slipped a bit at the end. It wasn’t easy at all,” he said. “I’m pleased with how I played but I’m desperately unhappy about not finishing it off.”
4. With U.S. Ryder Cup captain Davis Love III enjoying a surprise victory in the Wyndham Championship, Europe’s skipper Darren Clarke looked like he could possibly make it a Cup captains double at one point on Sunday. He made three birdies in his first six holes to move to nine-under-par over the course at Himmerland — in sight of the leaders at that stage. But, unfortunately, things then went awry for the Ulsterman. He suffered six bogeys over the following eight holes and dropped right back to three under and an eventual tie for 44th.