Golf. Hugo Santos with the best result. Bessa and Sá in an animated duel

Of the 111 participants in the €7,500 event, five played below par on a day that dawned cold and a bit windy, but then was bathed in sunshine and warmth , offering good results, not least because, as the players pointed out, the pitch, prepared for the International Amateur Championship next week, is in excellent condition.

Hugo Santos converted 6 birdies, the last of which on the iconic Par-3 18th hole with an island green, for a result of 68 shots, 4 under par.

“It was a very good game and I even felt like I left a few strokes on the court because of the putt, but I can’t complain at all because the result is very positive,” said declared the 2012 national champion.

We recall that in 2021, Hugo Santos won the last tournament of the FPG Circuit, in San Lorenzo, in the Algarve, and also finished 2nd in the 3rd Tournament, in Troia.

Particularly happy that his younger brother Ricardo made the cut on the DP World Tour, in the United Arab Emirates, Hugo Santos is 3 moves ahead of the two main pursuers, João Girão and Tomás Melo Gouveia, both at 71 (-1 ) .

The youngest of the Melo Gouveia brothers, who will play the Challenge Tour this year, shone with 1 eagle on hole 2, and seems to have recovered from a wrist operation at the end of last year which had forced him to delay his pre-season.

“The pitch is in the best condition I have ever seen. The greens are very good, roll very well and fast. It’s good to see the field like that, because it has a lot of potential and deserves it. And when I play for the Challenge Tour, I will meet greens at this speed, so it is good preparation,” said Tomás Melo Gouveia who, in 2021, when the FPG circuit passed through Montado, in his 2nd tournament, it was 2 Ranked (-6) just 1 shot behind the champion, Tomás Silva.

While João Girão turned professional at the end of 2021, the best amateur today was João Miguel Pereira who matched the Par-72 of the course designed by Jorge Santana da Silva.

João Pereira, from the Clube de Campo da Aroeira, had already obtained an excellent 10th place in the 2nd Tournament last year, in this same field of Montado, being the second best amateur.

In the women’s competition, Sofia Sá and Leonor Bessa, two good friends, have maintained a fierce rivalry for the supremacy of national golf and it is symptomatic that they both finished the first round tied today, with 69 strokes, 3 under par.

Leonor Bessa, the 2020 absolute national champion, defends the title as she won the 1st tournament of the FPG circuit last year, although it was then contested at the O’Connor Jr. Course, at Amendoeira Golf Resort in Silves . And despite recently contracting Sars-CoV2, he appeared in the recovered Montado and didn’t miss a hit, converting 3 birdies.

“This year, I experienced the Internacional Amateur de Portugal with a lot of emotions. This girl… I was always supporting her, texting her and calling her. She almost was and I know what she is capable of because she has a lot to give to golf. Let’s wait, but it will fall by his side,” said professional Leonor Bessa, referring to the great run that Sofia Sá had recently on this same Montado course, against some of the best amateurs in Europe.

As for Sofia Sá, absolute national champion of 2021, it really showed that it was no coincidence that two weeks ago she was in the fight for the title at the International Amateur Championship of Portugal and repeated the ” dose” of 69 at the time. , this time with 6 birdies and 3 bogeys.

“It’s a pitch we’ve played on several times. Tactically I know all his turns and even though it was a little windy I didn’t find the flag positions as difficult as at Internacional. My round today was quite different from the -3 round I did at Internacional, because today I played very well, I made 27 putts, and when I missed the green I have chip and putt. Today I really enjoyed my game,” said the 17-year-old, who is about to leave this summer for a university in Texas to compete and study economics.

The 1st Tournament of the FPG Circuit will end tomorrow (Sunday) with the last round, with the departure of the first group at 8:30 a.m. and the last at 11:06 a.m., with simultaneous departures from holes 1 and 10.

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