Making its debut in October of 2021, this event became the first tournament to be held on the Balearic Island of Mallorca since 2011’s Iberdrola Open. Originally intended to be no more than a one-off event, the European Tour organisers must have been impressed with the 2021 edition, as the tournament was included on the schedule in 2022. No doubt the players weren’t too disappointed to pencil in a return visit to this beautiful island off the east coast of the Spanish mainland.
The Son Muntaner Golf Club Course provides the stage for the tournament. Just shy of 7,000 yards in length, the course provides players with a solid test, placing particular emphasis on approach play and an ability to handle the tricky greens. 15 under was the magic number in the opening two editions of the tournament, with both 2021 champ Jeff Winther and 2022 winner Yannik Paul posting that score to finish one shot clear of their respective fields.
|2022||Son Muntaner Golf Club||Yannik Paul|
|2021||Golf Santa Ponsa||Jeff Winther|
2022: Yannik Paul
In the build-up to a Ryder Cup it is inevitable that every result on the DP World Tour will be seen through the prism of the bi-annual tournament against the USA. Even those who are not prone to Ryder Cup overexcitement must have felt a real sense of positivity at Yannik Paul’s victory in the Mallorca Open.
Paul remains an outsider for a place in the 2023 Ryder Cup but the quality of his golf coming into the Mallorca Open marked him out as one to watch. Coping with the weight of seeing out a maiden DP World Tour victory, when being put under considerable pressure by several other classy golfers, is a real boost to his confidence and will certainly have caught the eye of European captain, Luke Donald.
Initially it appeared as though the pressure was getting too much for Paul as he relinquished his 54-hole lead. However, he kept faith in what he was doing even when two shots over par through 15 holes. By not going away, Paul was able to turn the pressure onto Marcus Armitage who eventually made a couple of costly mistakes. Still, the 28-year-old needed a moment of inspiration and he pulled clear of a playoff by holing a very tidy 15-foot putt on the 18th green.
2021: Jeff Winther
What does Jeff Winther have in common with Dustin Johnson and Rory McIlroy? Well, as of Sunday evening at Golf Santa Ponsa, Winther joined those two and many more on the list of European Tour winners thanks to his victory at the Mallorca Golf Open. More specifically though, Winther joined those two on the list of golfers to suffer comical mishaps ahead of vital tournaments.
Johnson fell down the stairs before the 2017 Masters and McIlroy messed up his alarm before the final round of the 2012 Ryder Cup. Winther experienced the sense of panic those two felt after he found himself locked in his hotel bathroom with his wife on the Sunday of the Mallorca Golf Open. “We were in there for 45 minutes I think,” said Winther after seeing out his maiden European Tour win. “I thought, ‘Jeez not today, not Sunday, you’re leading the freaking event.’”
Fortunately, Winther’s six-year-old daughter got help from reception and Winther was able to concentrate on his golf. The popular Dane started Sunday with a two-shot lead but became embroiled in a real battle for the title and ended up winning by just one stroke from Sebastian Soderberg, Jorge Campillo and Pep Angles. “It’s unbelievable, it’s not sinking in. I couldn’t have had a better week. I’m overwhelmed,” said a delighted Winther who broke his duck on his 129th European Tour start. That earned him a very tidy cheque for just over €150,000 and so we certainly hope he bought his daughter plenty of toys!