Nathan Kimsey finished top of the Challenge Tour rankings after winning the final event in Spain

Cool-hand Kimsey claims Challenge Tour finale

Nathan Kimsey became the first Englishman to win the Challenge Tour points list since 2016 after securing his second victory of the season at the Rolex Challenge Tour Grand Final at Club de Golf Alcanada in Mallorca.

The 29-year-old from Lincolnshire posted a closing 70 to move to nine under and secure a one-stroke victory over countryman John Parry and South African Bryce Easton, who shared second place to both break into the Road to Mallorca top 20 and clinch a place on next season’s DP World Tour.

Kimsey started the final day slowly with four pars and a bogey in his first five holes, however after carding birdies at 6 and 8 he climbed to the top of the leaderboard before an eagle at the par-five 13th essentially sealed a memorable victory.

“I’m knackered. Wining golf tournaments isn’t easy,” said Kimsey, whose lifted him five places to the top of the rankings. “That was a battle out there. I didn’t have my best stuff, but I hit some good shots and holed some putts when it mattered. I’m a jumble of emotions – relief, happiness, just everything. Coming into the week, knowing I had it in my own hands, if I won to then finish as number on, it just feels great. I just tried to keep grinding. Nerves were a part of it so it was about trying to battle that and hit solid shots. I wanted to keep myself in with a chance coming up the last few holes and I did that.”

He added: “At the start of the year we all have it as a goal to get your card, so to come here and win this tournament and become number one, is just awesome. The card was wrapped up, but I just wanted to finish as high as possible to secure as many starts as possible next year, so I knew it was tight at the top. With a lot of points on offer this week, you’re trying to have a good week, while everyone is fighting for the same thing around you.”

Kimsey, who won the Le Vaudreuil Golf Challenge earlier this season, finished 48,894 points ahead of Switzerland’s Jeremy Freiburghaus, who came second on the Rankings, with German Alexander Knappe finishing third. Ten-time Sunshine Tour winner JC Ritchie graduated in fourth place with Swede Mikael Lindberg finishing fifth and completing the quintet who will benefit from the John Jacobs Bursary Award next season.

Lindberg’s fellow Swede Jens Dantorp finished sixth, while Daniel Hillier, from New Zealand, finished in seventh place. Number Eight Oliver Hundebøll was one of two Danes to secure graduation alongside Martin Simonsen, who finished the season in 14th place, while German Freddy Schott and Northern Ireland’s Tom McKibbin rounded out the top ten. Northern Irishman McKibbin, aged just 19, was the youngest man in the field and climbed five places to tenth on the Rankings with a tie for sixth in Mallorca.

Parry, Easton and England’s Matthew Baldwin all made a final day move into the top 20, finishing 17th, 18th and 19th, while the final DP World Tour card belongs to South African Deon Germishuys, who finished just 1,507 points ahead of Poland’s Mateusz Gradecki, who narrowly missed out on graduation.

The final Road to Mallorca Rankings can be found here, with the top 20 receiving the DP World Tour cards for 2023.

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