AN amateur golfer from Solihull is one step closer to playing with a star of the European Tour after winning a prestigious Bridgestone event on his club’s calendar.
Tony Ward won Bridgestone UK tyre division’s DriveGuard Trophy at Ladbrook Park Golf Club, which has put him on a journey for a round at the Pro-Am of the British Masters, supported by Sky Sports, in October.
The five handicapper won the stableford competition with 41 points, which now qualifies him for a regional final at Oxfordshire’s Heythrop Park in July, followed by a Pro-Am appearance at the Bridgestone Challenge – a Challenge Tour event – at the end of August at Heythrop Park.
And if Tony is part of the winning team at Heythrop, he will then go on to play at the Pro-Am of the British Masters, supported by Sky Sports, at The Grove in October, where he will play with a household name of the sport.
The 48-year-old is looking forward to the next stages of the Bridgestone DriveGuard Trophy, and potentially playing alongside a European Tour star at the British Masters Pro-Am at The Grove in October.
“I have played Heythrop a few times in the past, so I’m really excited about playing there for the regional qualifier. I really fancy my chances as I am familiar with the course.”
“Playing in the British Masters Pro-Am would be a dream come true. Luke Donald has been one of my favourite players for a long time, playing alongside him would be incredible.”
Bridgestone is embarking on an exciting golf sponsorship quite unique to the UK tyre industry, featuring a European Tour event partnership with the British Masters, supported by Sky Sports, the resurrection of an English based Challenge Tour tournament and a nationwide amateur competition with nearly 200 other clubs.
Tony added; “I’m delighted to have won our Bridgestone DriveGuard Trophy qualifier. It is one of the biggest competitions of the year, with about 100 members taking part, and I’m thrilled to have my name go up on the club’s honours board.”
The highlight of a brilliant performance came at the 2nd hole, a 340 yard Par Four. He said; “I was left with about 80 yards to the flag for my third shot from the middle of the fairway. My pitch into the green took a couple of bounces, before hitting the bottom of the flag and dropping in. It was the most incredible way to get a birdie.”
The DriveGuard Trophy is free to enter and accessible to golfers of all ages and handicaps and is open to men, women and juniors.
It has been named after an innovative new range of Bridgestone tyres called DriveGuard, which allow drivers to maintain control after a puncture and safely continue for 50 miles and speeds up to 50mph, or a safe destination to organise a replacement.
Bridgestone’s north region consumer sales and marketing director Farrell Dolan said: “We have identified huge potential from the world of golf and are extremely excited to be entering into a series of sponsorships covering such a broad range of the sport.
“We will be engaging with hundreds of amateur players who will already be familiar with our brand and we have structured our sponsorships to actually give them an opportunity to play at the very top of the game.”
Before every club event, each participant receives a voucher to play in the Bridgestone DriveGuard Trophy, along with a tyre offer.
This enables them to qualify for a British Masters supported by Sky Sports shoe bag when purchasing four Bridgestone DriveGuard tyres in the next six months, along with a dozen of Bridgestone golf balls.
For more information about Bridgestone, visit www.bridgestone.co.uk