Scotland's Duncan Stewart claimed his best finish since joining the European Tour, despite a bogey at the final hole, as he shared second place at the lucrative Kazakhstan Open.
The 29-year-old finished seven shots behind runaway winner Johan Carlsson of Sweden, but the result has elevated Stewart from 40th position in the Challenge Tour rankings to 14th and inside the cut-line for a European Tour card while also securing his pace in the final three events of the season in China, Oman and Dubai.
Stewart was disappointed with his bogey on the final hole that denied him an outright second place finish but the man from Grantown-on-Spey knows that it was a huge result and the €32,000 (£26,742.44), could go a long way in securing a rapid rise to the top tier of European golf in his rookie season on the Challenge Tour.
“I can't complain with the result but when you're on the fairway at the last you can't be making bogey,” said the Scotsman. “I didn't actually play that bad. I had two stupid holes but to be honest I wouldn't go back and change any shots that I hit.
“At the end of the day we were always playing for second but I had a chance to get it by myself going down the last. You have to take those opportunities when they're there.”
Stewart spoke to bunkered earlier this year and revealed the unique way that he was paying for his first season on the Challenge Tour. A lack of funding and support meant he had to be pro-active in finding a way to continue playing in the professional ranks.
By selling shares in himself, Stewart was able to play a full 2012 season the EuroPro tour, Gecko Pro Tour and Mena Tour thanks to investment from over 60 different parties, including Ryder Cup star Paul Lawrie. In total he sold 150 shares for £100, and each investor made a profit with each share returning £125, so his rapid rise through the Challenge Tour ranks has allowed everything to be put in perspective despite the disappointment.
“If somebody had said to me at the start of the week I had to take tied second, of course I would, but I lost a lot of money on the last, which would almost have been enough to guarantee my European Tour card. Now it's down to the last three events so we'll see what happens.”