Syme secures European Tour card

Connor Syme raced through qualifying to win his European Tour card.
Connor Syme raced through qualifying to win his European Tour card.

Connor Syme has earned a place on the European Tour next season after smashing through qualifying in Spain.

It caps off what has been a marvellous 2017 for the Drumoig 22-year-old who started the year as an amateur and ended as a tour graduate.

Syme arrived at the Lumine Golf Club for the gruelling six round final qualifiers after advancing from the school’s second stage last week.

After a making a steady start, carding 72 and 73 for his opening two rounds, Syme burst into contention and a round three 63 saw him surging up the leaderboard.

This was followed up with two rounds of 67 and a closing 69 on Thursday to comfortably earn him the place in the top 25 by finishing in a share of ninth.

In fact, his card was rarely in doubt over the final 18 and he may have topped the leaderboard at the end of his six rounds had it not been for run-away leader Sam Horsfield.

His only wobble came in the closing few holes when a double bogey on the 15th blotted an otherwise spotless scorecard.

At around that time, though, the European Tour confirmed that the amount of players remaining on the course meant that those sitting on -13 or better had won their rights.

With Syme some four strokes better off, the remaining three holes were a formality.

It’s been 12 months to remember for Syme who has really announced himself on the big stage.

As an amateur, a win at Crail’s Battle Trophy and qualification for the Open Championship were individual highlights.

Making the 2017 Walker Cup side was, according to Syme himself, one of the year’s man goals and he achieved that, part of the GB and Ireland team defeated in the United States.

Barely weeks had past from the competition ending when he announced the move out of the amateur game and into the pro-ranks.

The shift was seamless, and in his first start, finished in the top 15 at the Portugal Masters.

Organisers of the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship were keen to give the local golfer another opportunity and handed him and invite for their competition played over St Andrews, Carnoustie and Kingsbarns.

Syme repaid their generosity and proved his first performance was no fluke, again finishing inside the top 15.

A third crack at a professional tournament came when Syme made the cut mark at the Andalucia Valderrama Masters in Spain before tour qualifying started.