A stunning venue awaits finalists in a new-look Lombard Trophy with Portugal’s Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort Hotel hosting the climax to Europe’s largest pro-am.
The popular Algarve golfing hotspot at Vilamoura will stage the traditional 36-hole final from September 22-23 which also features an all women final too in an exciting new development for the event.
Lombard, a leading asset management finance company, which has signed a three year extension to sponsor the tournament, is also backing a women’s version of the pro-am to reflect its support for equality and diversity to encourage participation.
Vila Sol, which has just been named Portugal’s best golf resort by leading golf magazine Today’s Golfer in its 2016 Travel Awards, has signed a three year agreement to stage the PGA National Pro-Am Championship which welcomes Coca Cola on board as a support sponsor for Lombard.
More than 800 clubs from across the UK are set to take part in the tournament which sees 14 regional finals with a total prize fund of £70,000 and £12,000 to the winning PGA pro.
Regional final venues, including two past Ryder Cup courses, will be held at Fulford, Little Aston, Burnham & Berrow, Cawder, Crieff, Walton Heath, Bovey Castle, Ashridge, Dunham Forest, Camberley Heath, Thetford, Coventry, Formby and The K Club.
A further two regional finals, at Dunham Forest and Camberley Heath, will see WPGA members contest an all-female pro and amateur affair with six finalists going to Portugal to also compete over 36 holes with £2,500 for the champion.
Portugal has long been synonymous with golf and particularly the Lombard Trophy having staged finals there back in the 1990s and 2000s.
Vila Sol is owned by the Pestana Group which has recently unveiled a joint partnership with Real Madrid soccer legend Ronaldo for the launch of four new boutique hotels.
The Portuguese striker was just six when Vila Sol was opened back in 1991 – the design of renowned architect Donald Steel – and this central Algarve location is one of the most picturesque in Europe.
The 6,991-yard par 72 course – set in 75 acres of rich natural beauty in central Algarve – is complemented by the 9-hole Pestana Village Sol Academy course.
PGA chief executive Sandy Jones commented: “Lombard are fantastic sponsors of the PGA National Pro-Am Championship and we are also delighted to welcome long standing PGA Partner Coca Cola as support sponsors.
“The addition of the magnificent Pestana Vila Sol as the grand final destination adds to the prestige of event which we are proud to call Europe’s largest pro-am.
“This year also marks an exciting new development with a separate pro-am tournament expressly for WPGA and female amateurs.
“Lombard are committed to equality and diversity and encouraging more women to play will reap rewards at grass roots level.”
Ian Isaac, head of Lombard, added: “Following the success of the Lombard Trophy in previous years, we’re delighted to once again be working with the PGA to offer the opportunity for professional and amateur golfers to play in this very exciting competition.
“The event will this year culminate at Vila Sol, one of the most prestigious courses in the Algarve. We’d like to welcome all the golfers taking part in the 2016 Lombard Trophy and wish everyone the best of luck.”
Rui Gago, golf director for the Pestana Group said: “Pestana Group is delighted and honored to welcome the Lombard Trophy final to its 5-star venue Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort Hotel on the sunny Algarve.
“It is great recognition both for us and for the region which has each recently received golf awards. We believe the event will provide an exciting challenge for all of the competitors and we look forward to welcoming them here in September.
“We would also like to say a big thank you to The PGA, Lombard and Coca-Cola for their energy and commitment to bringing such a fantastic event to our home.”
Pestana Vila Sol Golf & Resort http://www.pestana.com/uk/hotel/pestana-vila-sol
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