ECCO Tour Championship

Normally when one is looking for the potential winner of any golf event, whether it be first tier or on the challenger circuit, course form is always a must-however that pointer will not be available when Stensballegaard Golf plays host to the 2012 ECCO Tour Championship hosted by Thomas Björn and Mercedes-Benz from August 15th-18th.

The reason? Well, it is one of eight brand new venues added to the tour circuit, having impressed everyone with its layout and facilities. The course, in Horsens, Denmark, boasts excellent indoor and outdoor practise ranges, and the 27-hole course won the title of Golf Development of the Year in 2010.

It is not hard to see why either-chief architect Rick Baril put a lot of thought and effort into designing the layout of each hole on the course, built on a private farm in the countryside and overlooking the Horsens Fjord. It is expected to be one of the tougher courses on the circuit with some tricky holes, especially the ninth, where the tee is some 50 metres higher than the green.

Therefore, anybody that has even played a non-tournament round is likely to start with a distinct advantage, and with that in mind it may be prudent to watch out for any Danish players that turn up. With 160,000 euros on offer there are sure to be quite a few, including one man that has already had a taste of what to expect, and that is Lasse Jensen who visited the course to play a round soon after it opened two years ago.

He was impressed then, and will no doubt be even more taken in by the surroundings, but did point out that although it is not a links course, it does tend to be a wind trap, and has lots of small bunkers. Just to add the difficulty factor, it has been designed so that around a lot of the green areas there is a distinct slope away and downwards.

All in all that makes it a worthy adversary for anyone that turns up on 15th August, and that includes Jensen who is looking forward to putting his knowledge to good use. He finished 43rd in last year’s Challenge Tour Rankings, and significantly on the way, only failed to make the cut three times in 23 appearances.

Jensen is currently 31st on the 2012 list so knows that there are others with bigger claims on recent form such as fellow Dane Andreas Hartø, the Swede Magnus Carlsson and the English pair Gary Lockerbie, who currently heads the rankings, and Simon Wakefield.

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