Fond Memories For Campbell In Returning To Switzerland
Bernie McGuire, Crans-sur-Sierre, Switzerland
Wednesday, August 31st, 2011
Michael Campbell is once again delighted to return to Switzerland and the Omega European Masters.
The host Crans-sur-Sierre course was the scene of Campbell's first pro victory outside of either his native New Zealand or Australia when he captured the 1994 Memorial Olivier Barras tournament on Europe's secondary Challenge Tour.
Campbell has returned to the European Tour after nearly a month looking forward to the closing quarter of the 2011 season.
With the four Major’s completed, the Race to Dubai heads to the back straight and the 17 events remaining on this year’s schedule.
Campbell is among eight Major Champions teeing up in this week’s Omega European Masters.
Joining Campbell is reigning and fellow U.S. Open winner, Rory McIlroy, Open Champion, Darren Clarke plus fellow Open winners, Paul Lawrie, Todd Hamilton and Louis Oosthuizen.
As well, Ryder Cup captain and double Augusta winner, Jose Maria Olazabal takes his place in the Euro 2m event.
Campbell is making his 14th appearance on the Alpine Crans-sur-Sierre course.
He first contested the event way back in 1994 while Campbell’s best finish was runner-up in 2003 to Ernie Els.
“I always enjoy coming back to Switzerland not only for the amazing scenery but the great memories of having won on this course in 1993," he said.
"The course has changed considerably since then but I always love coming back here.
“It’s a great field this year and probably one of the best in some years.
“The course always is in great conditon and you could probably pick the golf up and move it somewhere else, and you wouldn’t think it was that great a golf course.
“But given the Swiss Alps surroundings, it’s just fantastic.”
Campbell warmed up for the event by contesting the Pro-Am and with his team of the Swiss pair of Roland Burri and Philippe Burnand along with Frenchwoman Stephane Rinaldi finishing 34th with a score of minus 12 behind the winning team led by Scotland’s Colin Montgomerie.
Campbell will begin the event proper at 2pm local time Thursday in the company of Bernd Wiesberger of Austria and Spain’s Gonzalo Fernandez-Castano.