Fabrizio Zanotti of Paraguay, won the BMW International Open at Gut Lärchenhof on the fifth extra hole of a sudden-death play-off. Four players, Henrik Stenson, Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Gregory Havret and Zanotti, made it through to the playoff after finishing on 19 under par in regulation play, but it was Zanotti who claimed his maiden victory on the European Tour and a first prize of €330,330. Presenting the trophy Dr Friedrich Eichiner (pictured), member of the Board of Management BMW AG, Finance said, “Congratulations Fabrizio Zanotti on this fantastic victory at the 26th BMW International Open.”
Zanotti played with Callaway and Odyssey equipment including a 9°Callaway Big Bertha Alpha Driver, Callaway X Forged ’13 irons and an Odyssey Versa BWB V-Line putter. He used a Titleist Pro V1 ball as did Cabrera-Bello with the other two play-off finalists, Stenson and Havret using the Titleist Pro V1x. All the finalists in the play-off wore FootJoy shoes with Zanotti wearing a pair of FJ DNA and a StaSof cabretta leather glove.
Zanotti shot a final round of 65 for a total of 269 and the win moves him up to twenty-forth in the current Race to Dubai standings and sees him placed 112th in the Official World Golf Ranking, up from 305th. He commented, “I knew today that if I made a good run I’d have a good chance. Today was my day. I’ve been playing very well in the last few weeks so I knew that if I had a good round I would have a good chance. I have been working a lot and trying to bring up my confidence to get to this moment and finally I am here.”
Also at the event James Heath won a BMW i8 for a hole-in-one. He stated, “I am blown away, virtually speechless. The prize more than triples the highest cheque I’ve ever made. This is my fifteenth hole in one – the second in professional tournament play – but the others pale into insignificance by comparison. My last one was in Colombia three years ago and I didn’t even get a pat on the back.”