The Open Champion Shane Lowry has his sights set on a strong finish to the 2019 Race to Dubai with the aim of becoming European Number One for the first time in his career as he prepares for the Turkish Airlines Open – the sixth Rolex Series event of the season.

The Irishman, who triumphed at Royal Portrush in July, is less than 700 points behind current Race to Dubai Rankings Presented by Rolex leader Bernd Wiesberger but, with increased points on offer in the final three events of the season, there is still all to play for, starting at The Montgomerie Maxx Royal in Belek.

Already a Rolex Series winner this year after securing the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship presented by EGA in January, Lowry is going in search of a sixth European Tour title this week.

Returning to Turkey with happy memories from last year are Thomas Detry and Martin Kaymer. Detry recorded his best finish in a Rolex Series event at Regnum Carya Golf & Spa Resort, as a back-nine blitz of five consecutive birdies saw him move to 15 under, two strokes behind defending champion Justin Rose who defeated Li Haotong in a play-off. Kaymer finished in a share of fifth last year.

At 66th and 71st on the Race to Dubai Rankings respectively, both players will be looking to secure their spots in the Nedbank Golf Challenge hosted by Gary Player and DP World Tour Championship, Dubai. Just the top 60 and then 50 players available from the Race to Dubai Rankings will take part in the final two events of the season.

Lowry said: “It’s my main goal over the next few weeks to perform as best as I can, it would be lovely if I got to the final 18 holes in Dubai with a chance to win the Race to Dubai. To be European Number One would be really special and would add to the year I’ve had.

“I think it would be the icing on the cake. I’m going to give it my best shot but if I don’t win it, I won’t be too disappointed. I’ve had a decent year and I’d be pretty happy with what I’ve got at Christmas.

“To start the year with a win in Abu Dhabi at a Rolex Series event was huge – that gave me the confidence going forward. Outside of a Major, as a European Tour player it probably doesn’t get much bigger. There are WGCs as well, but Rolex Series events are definitely up there.”


photo credit: turkish airlines

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