Linna Golf, one of Europe’s best new courses and a member of the PGA European Tour Courses group, has been selected to host the European Amateur Championships in 2010. Situated in Hà¤meenlinna, 100kms north of Helsinki, the course, at 6,624m (7,224 yards) and with a large selection of teeing locations, was designed to play both as a tournament venue and for the everyday golfer.
The majestic layout by European Golf Design, which opened for play in 2006, cuts through birch and pine forest bordering a 7km long lake on the historic Vanajan Linna Hotel estate.
Mika Walkamo, president of Linna Golf, said, “Linna Golf was built to host top-class tournaments. The award of the most prestigious amateur individual championship in European golf is a sign that Linna’s potential as a tournament venue is already being recognised. It is our goal to host a full European Tour event by 2011.”
The 72-hole amateur strokeplay event is the European Golf Association’s premier individual championship, and past winners include Sergio Garcia, US PGA Tour player Carl Petterson and European Tour player Gregory Havret.
Linna Golf’s touring professional Mikko Ilonen became the first Finn to win on the PGA European Tour at the 2007 Indonesia Open. His win created international excitement around golf in Finland.
Linna has begun negotiations to host a Challenge Tour event in 2008, and believes that the arrival of top-class tournament golf to Finland will drive the popularity of the game and increase the number of Finns participating.
“Finland has only 120,000 golfers whereas Sweden has 600,000, but with Mikko Ilonen’s European Tour success and top-class tournament golf coming to Linna, we expect to close the gap quickly,” said Mika Walkamo.