The Astbury welcomes the HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour this week as Europe’s best young professionals compete for the £10,000 top prize in the FSC Invitational.
Jack Senior and William Harrold are clear favourites with the bookies having each won two of the first four events of the season while last year’s winner at The Astbury, James Hepworth, returns to defend his title.
Senior and Harrold have dominated the early stages of the Tour season and look well on course to earn one of the Challenge Tour cards handed out to the top five on the Order of Merit at the end of the campaign.
Among the other names to look out for at The Astbury is Garrick Porteous, the 2013 Amateur Champion who turned pro after competing in The Masters at Augusta in April. Scott Drummond, winner of the PGA Championship at Wentworth in 2004 will also be teeing it up.
Two former Ryder Cup stars will be in action in the FSC Invitational in the shape of six-time European Tour winner Paul Broadhurst and Shropshire’s Peter Baker, who has three European Tour titles to his name.
Tucked away in the heart of the Shropshire countryside, The Astbury is home to 2011 Open Champion Darren Clarke.
The course is owned and was designed by K.K. Downing, the legendary Judas Priest guitarist and songwriter, who said: “I am thrilled to see the EuroPro Tour return to The Astbury. I was very proud to hear so many positive comments about the course last year and I am confident the players will really enjoy playing here again this week.
“We had a tight and gripping tournament here in 2013 and hopefully we will get some drier weather towards the end of the week. The course is fantastic and we are expending the whole site at The Astbury. Our development was highlighted recently when we introduced Darren Clarke as an ambassador of the course.”
Daniel Godding, Director of Operations at the HotelPlanner.com PGA EuroPro Tour, said: “I am excited to be bringing the tour back to The Astbury this year. We made our debut there in 2013 and it proved incredibly popular with the players. The greens and layout of the course are outstanding.”
The FSC Invitational is a 54-hole event played over three days, concluding on Friday, June 13. The final round will be filmed for a two-hour highlights package to be broadcast on Sky Sports HD on Tuesday, June 24, with repeats the following day.
Spectator entry is free throughout the week.