After a two-year break, the 58th edition of the Open of Portugal will score for the Challenge Tour and European Tour, assuming that the “dual ranking” category will complete the ‘Iberian swing’, with Portugal Masters and Estrela Damn N.A. Andalucia Masters.
The Portuguese tournament was already scheduled for September at the Royal Óbidos Spa & Golf Resort, but it would only integrate the ‘Road to Mallorca’ from the Challenge Tour. Thanks to the return to the European Tour, after the 2017 interruption, the Portugal Open sees the prize-money rise from €200,000 to €500,000.
“We are really happy to guarantee another double ranking Portuguese Open that will move to Royal Óbidos for the next three years. This region offers a variety of courses, making it one of the most interesting golf destinations in Portugal. We believe that Royal Óbidos, a Seve Ballesteros’ project, will be a good golf test for the players from European Tour and Challenge Tour”, said Miguel Franco de Sousa, president of the Portuguese Golf Federation.
Ben Cowen, vice-director of European Tour operations, explained the strategy adopted to make the event return to Portugal, that did not take place between 2011 and 2016, to the main circuit, following the returning of the international competition, after the interruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.
“When planning the redesigned ‘Race to Dubai 2020’, a part of our approach was to play, whenever it was possible, in groups of regions or territories”, justified Ben Cowen.
Taking in consideration that the 58th edition of the Portugal Open will complete the ‘Iberian swing”, shortly after Estrella Damm NA Andaluzia Masters, at the Real Club Valderrama, from 3 to 6 of September, and the Portugal Masters, at the Dom Pedro Victoria Golf Course, in Vilamoura, from 10 to 13 of September, the vice-president of the European Tour operations believes that it could be an added value for the players.
“Adding the ‘Open of Portugal at Royal Óbidos” as a ‘dual ranking’ event creates an ‘Iberian swing’ of three tournaments for the players on the European Tour. It also offers more good news for Challenge Tour members, because the event remains on the ‘Road to Mallorca’ for the third consecutive season, with ‘prize-money’ increased to €500,000”, he added.