Nicole Garcia wins the 2013 Free State and Northern Cape Championship
The beautiful Clarens Golf Estate was the venue for the 2013 Free State and Northern Cape 54 hole Championship. The course had been lengthened for the Championship Division and with the fairways having suffered from the recent heavy rain, preferred lies were allowed. A good field of 51 entries was received, of which 36 made up the Championship Division.
After the mornings first round Helena Buitendag (Gauteng North) was in the lead shooting an excellent 4 under par 68, closely followed by Gina Switala (Gauteng North) and Nicole Garcia (Ekurhuleni) on 69. In the afternoon Nicole mirrored the first round by shooting another 69 giving her a total 138, giving her with a four shot lead over Gina Switala on 142, who in turn was only one shot ahead of Monja Richards(Mpumalanga) and Helena Buitendag both on 143
In perfect weather conditions on Sunday the scene was set for a very exciting finish. The final group of Nicole, Gina and Monja battled it out with the lead changing back and forth. Standing on the 18th tee, Gina was one shot ahead of Nicole and then she unfortunately put her second shot into the water hazard next to the green, whilst Nicole’s ball landed a metre from the pin. Nicole then clinched the title as she did not waver and sunk her putt for her third birdie on that hole to win the Championship by one shot.
The Silver Division winner was Symone Henriques (Gauteng North) .
211 – Nicole Garcia (Ebotse) 69, 69, 73
212 – Gina Switala (Centurion) 69, 73, 70
217 – Helena Buitendag (Centurion) 68, 75, 74
218 – Lara Weinstein (Royal Johannesburg & Kensington) 73, 71, 74
218 – Monja Richards (Nelspruit) 72, 71, 75
220 – Kim Williams (The Els Club – Copperleaf) 78, 73, 69