The Algarve, one of Europe’s leading golf destinations, will mark the launch of its new ‘golf4all’ campaign by hosting a new international disability golf tournament in November.
Europe’s leading impaired golfers will compete in the European Disabled Golfers Association (EDGA) Algarve Open – where the winner of the 2014 EDGA Premier Series Order of Merit will be crowned – at Pestana Vila Sol, November 18-23.
Among those players scheduled to appear are Cédric Lescut of Belgium, who turned pro in 2002 after having the lower part of his right leg amputated; Manuel de los Santos of the Dominican Republic & France, who before having his left leg amputated was a top-level basketball player, and Spain’s first ever wheelchair golfer, Sebas Lorente.
Also taking part are Monique Kalman, a Dutch paragolfer who has also won Paralympic gold in tennis; former Paralympic skiers Nino Ouraboh and Martijn Wijsman; and French amateur Charles-Henri Quélin who has +2 handicap and plays with a fused right arm.
The event will be a centerpiece of the Algarve Tourism Association’s (ATA) new ‘golf4all’, which seeks to showcase the Algarve as a fully-inclusive tourism attraction for golfers of all ages and abilities and for tourists from across the globe.
Tony Bennett, president of the EDGA, said: “To have a partner such as the Algarve Tourism Association supporting the EDGA Algarve Open is very important for the successful delivery of what is the first European level tournament for golfers with impairment to be held in Portugal.
“The event is part of the ‘golf4all’ campaign and as a resident in the Algarve I can vouch, not only for the quality of the facilities that can be found in this region of Portugal, but also for the warm and friendly reception that the players are sure to receive.
“We at EDGA are looking forward to a great event in November and one which will sit on both our and the Algarve’s calendar for many years to come.”
The ‘golf4all’ campaign has also been launched through ATA’s new social media channels – www.facebook.com/visitgolfalgarve and www.twitter.com/vstgolfalgarve – which have already attracted more than 2,500 fans since their launch at the end of September.
A range of exciting ‘golf4all’ initiatives are planned throughout 2015 to further embellish the campaign, which aims to highlight why the Algarve is one of Europe’s most popular, welcome and inclusive golf destinations.
It will target every unique type of golfer: from disabled golfers, to juniors, seniors and golfers from ‘minority’ backgrounds – both male and female. The campaign will also aim to reach golfers of all ability levels, from beginners, to casual players and experienced golfers.
A spokesperson for ATA said: “We are tremendously excited to be launching the ‘golf4all’ campaign, and especially thrilled that we are doing so with the announcement of the EDGA Algarve Open.
“The Algarve is not only Europe’s number one golf destination, it is also one of the most welcoming and inclusive destinations anywhere in the world – that is something we are very proud of, and something we wanted to highlight to people with the ‘golf4all’ campaign.
“We hope to play our part in growing the game of golf, and embellishing the destination experience for the myriad golfers that head here for sunshine golf each year.”
European Disabled Golfers Association www.edgagolf.org
Golf in Algarve www.visitgolfalgarve.com