Paisley secures card with third place at the Italian Open

European Tour player and Northern Golfer columnist Chris Paisley has secured his tour card for next season following a third place finish in the Italian Open – where home favourite Francesco Molinari collected the victory.

Paisley, who picked up €168,900 for his tie for third place alongside Spain’s Nacho Elvira, jumped from outside the top 110 – the mark to secure a card – into the top 75 on the Race to Dubai and has set his sights on climbing higher in the rankings.

“To know my card is secure for next season is a fantastic feeling. It’s the first goal I set at the start of the season and I expected to do it comfortably at the start of the year.

“I struggled a bit in the middle of the season and have had to work hard to improve, and get the decent results in. Despite my position in the Race to Dubai, I knew I had a good result in me. For that to come in a big money event is amazing – it has completely changed my year.

“I’ve had a few different seasons on the European Tour – from carrying my year on one big result to slowly accumulating enough money to get in.

“The first option is definitely more stressful. I’ve missed a lot of cuts this season, but knowing how top-heavy the purses are, I knew one result would be huge.”

Following weather delays, Paisley sat at the top of the leaderboard on 10 under-par during the second round, ahead of Masters champion Danny Willett, a position he enjoyed, and one which led to many supportive messages from across the North East.

“Sitting at the top of a strong leaderboard was a great feeling. I had the perfect place in the draw and got so many messages of support. It’s brilliant to see how many people are routing for me.

“In golf, there is always something more to achieve. Now I have my card, I’d like to make it into the first event of the Final Series and build on that and get through to the World Tour Championship at the end of the year.”
Follow Chris’ Tour Life in his regular Northern Golfer column.