The fifth Seve Ballesteros Foundation Pro-Am took place at Foxhills, pushing the funds raised so far to more than £200,000 in aid of a cure for brain cancer and providing opportunities for underprivileged children to play golf.
The brainchild of Brendan Reynolds, the driving force behind the Pro-Am and long time friend of Seve and the Ballesteros family, the pro-am itself saw three stars from The PGA in England , Michael Lowe , Paul Nessling and Ally Mellor shoot seven-under-par 65s to win the individual event.
Not to be outshone by his two colleagues, Nessling led his three amateur partners comprising Brendan Reynolds, Tony O’Brian and former Chelsea and Italian footballer, Gianluca Vialli to victory in the team event as well.
Their feat was followed by one of the top auction dinners of the year, which included a Q&A session with Ken Schofield CBE. The former executive director of the European Tour entertained diners with numerous anecdotes based on his recollections of the great man himself, all of which was enhanced by the presence of Seve’s daughter Carmen.
The three winners each reflected on this highlight of the region’s year. Nessling loved the format, saying: ‘The format allows us to go for everything and so I used my driver far more often than I’d usually do.
‘The odd one went offline, but the rest put me in shape to go for the birdies and eagles. It’s a brilliant format and really great fun, and I was delighted to help my amateur partners collect top prize in the team event.’
Lowe had personal reasons for wanting to support the event, as he explained: ‘My mother had cancer so I’m always keen to get involved and do what I can for this event.
‘Foxhills was in great condition as usual, everyone was very generous at the auction dinner, and it was great to see Seve’s daughter Carmen there as well. It’s definitely one of the top events in the region, and that’s down to Brendan Reynolds.’
Mellor summed up his thoughts on the day when he said: ‘It’s a great event. The Seve Ballesteros Foundation does great work to help the research into treating and curing brain cancer, and as we heard, is creating all sorts of opportunities to get underprivileged children into golf.
‘It was wonderful to see so much money being raised for two great causes – what a great ambassador Seve was, and judging by the support for this event, still is.
‘It was also nice to hear accounts of Seve during the evening. With the Ryder Cup just days away now, let’s hope Seve’s spirit will once again see Europe through. Vamos Seve! What a legend.’
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