• Rahm named Europe’s best

    Jon Rahm
    The victor

    Reigning Irish Open, Open de España, DP World Tour Championship and Race to Dubai champion Jon Rahm has claimed the 2019 Hilton European Tour Golfer of the Year award.

    Unsurprisingly, the 25-year-old was top of the list by a panel comprising members of the golfing media as the winner of the prestigious annual award.
    He is the first Spaniard since Seve Ballesteros to win the Order of Merit after he sealed the Race to Dubai title in a dramatic finale to the 2019 campaign.

    ‘It is a huge honour for me to be named the Hilton European Tour Golfer of the Year,’ said Rahm, who announced as the winner at a lunch held at The Biltmore Mayfair Hotel in London. ‘To emulate another of Seve’s achievements in winning this award is very humbling, and I’m so proud of what I have achieved this year.

    ‘To win both the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and DP World Tour Championship for a second time, as well as defend the Open de España, were all incredible moments.

    ‘But to finish the year as winner of the Race to Dubai is something I’m incredibly proud of achieving at this early stage in my career.’

    To add to his wins, Rahm finished tied ninth at The Masters, tied third in the US Open and was runner-up at the Valderrama Masters before securing his first European Tour title of the year at the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open – his third Rolex Series victory in the space of three years.

    He came close to claiming another Rolex Series title in September, finishing runner-up to Danny Willett at the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth Club, after rounds of 66-67-68-70 on his debut in the event.

    On home soil, at Club de Campo Villa de Madrid, he defended a title for the first time in his career as he won the Open de España in the Spanish capital. The Spaniard stormed to victory in front of an adoring home crowd, carding a third round of 63 to take a five-stroke lead, which he then maintained as he finished on 22 under par.

    His remarkable consistency throughout 2019 gave him the opportunity to win the Race to Dubai for the first time in his career at the final event of the season, the DP World Tour Championship, Dubai – an event he previously won in 2017.

    Rahm shared the lead going into the final round, and then secured the victory on the 18th hole at Jumeirah Golf Estates, getting up and down from a greenside bunker for birdie to hold off the challenge of 2017 Race to Dubai Champion Tommy Fleetwood and win his fourth Rolex Series title, the richest first prize in tournament golf of US$3 million and the 2019 Race to Dubai.

    Rahm became just the second Spaniard in history to win the Harry Vardon Trophy as European No 1, following in Ballesteros’s footsteps – who won the Tour’s Order of Merit for the sixth and final time in 1991. Rahm now joins Ballesteros (1986, 88, 91) and Sergio Garcia (2017) as the third Spaniard to receive the European Tour’s Golfer of the Year award.

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