Fate has been kind and reunited a Devon PGA pro and his amateur partner for another tilt at landing Europe’s largest pro-am.
Thurlestone pro Peter Laugher, 52, and Harry Milburn-Fryer, a 20-year-old student from Kingsbridge, missed out in a play-off in last year’s Virgin Atlantic PGA National Pro-Am Championship supported by SkyCaddie.
But the pair are back together again for another crack after Millburn-Fryer again won his club medal to win a place alongside Laugher in the regional final at Saunton Golf Club on May 5.
However the duo will face stiff competition from around 40 other clubs represented by pro and amateur pairings but the incentives are high with a dream 36-hole grand final on the luxurious Sandals Emerald Bay resort, Grand Exuma in the Bahamas from 23 – 28 November.
Laugher, an Advanced Fellow of the PGA in recognition of his achievements in the sport, has been the professional at Thurlestone for 14 years but is taking a low key approach to the regional final.
“We want to go one better this time after the experience of last year,” admitted Laugher who 12 months ago saw the title slip from their grasp at Turkey’s Antalya Golf Club when amateur Phill Killey sank a 45 putt on the PGA Sultan Course to force a play-off.
“But golf being the game it is, it may not turn out like that and we don’t want to put too much pressure on ourselves. However it’s a great opportunity to try and get to the Bahamas! We both loved playing in such a well-organised event last year and are looking forward to it again.”
Other clubs represented include Hele Park, Honiton, Downes Crediton, Portmore, Exeter, Falmouth, Carlyon Bay and Bigbury.
Bigbury will see 55-year-old quantity surveyor Richard Medlin from Yealmpton team up with current head PGA pro and Women’s PGA Professional champion Tracy Loveys.
The pro-am is the largest of its kind in Europe attracting entries from more than 700 clubs with upwards of 70,000 amateurs striving to join their host PGA pro in the 16 regional finals.
The event, which carries a professional prize fund of £30,000, is being sponsored for the second year by Virgin Atlantic and supported by SkyCaddie.