Scotland’s Connor Syme can look forward to mixing it with some of the world’s top golfers again next season after securing an immediate return to the European Tour.
The Drumoig ace finished in a tie for 15th in the Challenge Tour Grand Final at Club de Golf Alcanada in Mallorca. That was enough to seal 14th place on the feeder circuit’s season-long rankings, with the top-15 all graduating to the main tour for 2020.
Afterwards, he wrote on social media: "Well that’s the end of a long and tough year on the Challenge Tour. Delighted to come out with my European Tour card for 2020. Thank you so much everyone truly for all the support along the way and to my amazing family and team of sponsors. It wouldn’t be possible without you all.
"So excited to see what next season has in store. I’ll start my 2020 season in South Africa in a few weeks."
Syme, 24, played on the European Tour in 2018 – his first full season as a professional – after finishing in a tie for ninth at Q-School late in 2017.
However, he could manage only one top-ten in his rookie season, a runner-up finish in the Shot Clock Masters. That added up to 126th place on the Race To Dubai and a season on the Challenge Tour.
However, the former Walker Cup star has had a superb year, making the cut in 14 of his 19 events and earning €89,062 in the process.
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He also scored his first professional victory in April, defeating the eventual Challenge Tour rankings winner Francesco Laporta in a play-off for the Turkish Airlines Challenge.
Syme joins compatriot Calum Hill in graduating to the European Tour, the Kirkcaldy-born 25-year-old ultimately finishing second on the rankings behind Laporta.
Bearsden’s Ewen Ferguson, the only other Scot to advance to the Grand Final, finished 25th on the rankings.
Spare a thought, too, for Robin Sciot-Siegrist. The Frenchman was left to rue two bogeys late in his final round which saw him finish in a tie for second. Solo second would have seen him finish inside the top-15 of the rankings and secure his European Tour card. Instead, he finished 16th and just missed out.
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2019 Challenge Tour Rankings – Top 15
1. Francesco Laporta (ITA)
2. Calum Hill (SCO)
3. Richard Bland (ENG)
4. Sebastian Heisele (GER)
5. Adrian Meron (POL)
6. Jack Senior (ENG)
7. Robin Roussel (FRA)
8. Antoine Rozner (FRA)
9. Matthew Jordan (ENG)
10. Ricardo Santos (POR)
11. Cormac Sharvin (NIR)
12. Oliver Farr (WAL)
13. Darius Van Driel (NED)
14. Connor Syme (SCO)
15. Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez (SPA)