The 2014 Ladies European Tour Access Series begins with the inaugural Association Suisse de Golf Ladies Open at Golfclub Gams Werdenberg in Gams, Switzerland, from Friday May 2 to Sunday May 4.
A field of 120 players from more than 23 different countries will vie for the first title of the season and prize money of €30,000.
At least 22 Swiss players will feature in the field of competitors, including the four leading hopefuls Melanie Mätzler, Fabienne In-Albon, Anaïs Maggetti and Caroline Rominger.
It will be a family affair for Mätzler, who helped to set up the tournament at her home club with the help of her father, Guido and will compete in the event with her sister, Monja.
She said: “I am looking forward to this tournament on home soil. For me it is doubly nice because I grew up just a few minutes from here.”
Fellow LET regular Rominger added: “I would love to play in front of a large gallery and hope that as many Swiss people as possible are there.”
In-Albon, who last year graduated to the top flight LET by finishing fifth on the 2013 LETAS Order of Merit, is also competing. She is looking to a fresh start after missing the cut in her first two LET events of 2014 in New Zealand and Morocco. She said: “I look forward to the tournament in Switzerland and my goal is to be among the best and deliver a good performance.”
Anaïs Maggetti, from Golf Gerre Losone, home to the Deutsche Bank Ladies Swiss Open on the LET from 2006 to 2012, added: “My goal at the Association de Golf Ladies Open is to finish among the top three.”
There are 16 tournaments on LETAS this season and the goal for many of the competitors is to finish the season ranked within the top five on the Order of Merit to earn membership of the LET in 2015.
However, there is a large contingent of current LET members who will be warming up for the following week’s Turkish Airlines Ladies Open at National Golf Club in Antalya, host venue to the Mineks Ladies Classic on the LETAS schedule in September.
They include last year’s LETAS Order of Merit winner Mireia Prat and Emma Cabrera-Bello of Spain, Klara Spilkova of the Czech Republic, Australian Bree Arthur and Mallory Fraiche of the United States.
The large group of LET rookies in the field includes Karoline Lampert of Germany, Scotland’s Sally Watson, Mia Piccio of the Philippines, Amy Boulden from Wales, Scotland’s Kelsey McDonald, Australian Maggie Yuan, Italian Stefania Avanzo and Linda Henriksson of Finland.
The main sponsors of the tournament are the Association Suisse de Golf (ASG) and the Association de Suisse de Golfeurs Indépendant (ASGI).
ASGI is presenting a special ‘ladies’ only’ clinic ahead of the tournament on Wednesday, April 30 held by Swiss former LET professional Nora Angehrn and Spanish professional Maria Beautell.
They are also urging juniors to ‘bring a friend’ to the final round on Sunday. Juniors from the local clubs will enjoy a fun day with lots of activities including tuition tips and a round of golf with regional ASG coach Angehrn.