Lothians-based golfers pursuing big goals as DP World Tour reaches climax

The four Lothians-based players on the DP World Tour are heading into the final few weeks of the 2022 season with various targets and, in a couple of cases, fighting for survival.

For Richie Ramsay, the goal is to take his campaign the full distance by playing in the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai next month.

For Grant Forrest, it’s to keep climbing the DP World Tour Rankings and maybe even be in the field as well at Jumeirah Golf Estates.

Hide Ad

And, for Stephen Gallacher and David Drysdale, it’s targeting a win as they both bid to keep long-held cards on the main tour.

Richie Ramsay is aiming to play in the the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai next month for the first time in five years. Picture: Ross Parker / SNS

Helped by his fourth title triumph in the Cazoo Classic at Hillside in July, Ramsay sits 31st in the standings heading into this week’s acciona Open de España presented by Madrid.

It marks the start of a three-event Spanish swing, which also includes the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters and the Mallorca Open.

Hide Ad

The Portugal Masters and the Nedbank Challenge in South Africa then follow before the Rolex Series finale in the UAE.

On the back of his two wins this year, Ewen Ferguson will definitely be flying the Saltire in that event, as will Italian Open champion Bob MacIntyre.

Hide Ad

They currently sit 11th and 12th respectively in what was formerly called the Race to Dubai behind leader Rory McIlroy.

Connor Syme also now looks to have secured his trip to Dubai, having jumped two spots to 30th after finishing joint-tenth in the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship last weekend.

Hide Ad

And, though taking nothing for granted, the same looks to be the case for 31st-placed Ramsay.

It would be the 39-year-old’s first appearance on the Earth Course at Jumeirah Golf Estates since 2017, having first teed up there in 2010 then again the following two years and also 2014 and 2015.

Hide Ad

“Dubai is a big thing for me, “ he admitted. “But I need to aim high as top tens are where all the money is.”

While it remains to be seen where the final cut-off will fall, finishing in the top 50 in the standings after the Nedbank Challenge has been the goal for the players since the start of the season.

Hide Ad

And, in addition to Ferguson, MacIntyre, Syme and Ramsay, David Law is also on course to go the full distance as he currently sits 45th.

Scott Jamieson, meanwhile, looks as though he has work to do over the next few weeks as the Florida-based player is in 56th position.

Hide Ad

It’s Forrest now the next best as far as the Scots are concerned, having jumped 23 spots to 83rd after he finished birdie-birdie at St Andrews to end up alongside Syme in the Dunhill Links.

“I’ve been playing really good golf the last few weeks, sort of from Wentworth onwards and it’s just been a case of trying to stay patient,” said the Pencaitland-based player.

Hide Ad

“I could really have made a big jump, especially at Wentworth (where he finished with a costly triple-bogey 7 in the BMW PGA Championship when close to the top ten standing on the tee).

“But there are still four tournaments to play before Nedbank and DP World, so there’s no reason why we can’t keep it going.”

Hide Ad

Marc Warren sits 109th, which is just inside the current projected cut-off mark in the card battle, but, as well as Craig Howie in 128th, both Drysdale and Gallacher are on the wrong side of that line.

Drysdale, who has been struggling with a niggling shoulder injury this year and only lasted one round in the Dunhill Links, is lying 176th.

Hide Ad

He cut it fine a year ago before hanging on to his card in the 121st spot and the Cockburnspath-based 47-year-old has his back against the wall once more.

As does Gallacher, who sees his exemption for winning the 2019 Hero Indian Open run out at the end of the current campaign.

Hide Ad

The four-time DP World Tour winner heads into this week’s Madrid event 17 spots below Drysdale and, therefore, also needs something special in either Spain or Portugal.

Drysdale has held his card for 18 seasons in a row and 20 in total while, apart from one season, Gallacher has been a top-tour player since 1996.