Europe regained the Palmer Cup, played at Prestwick Golf Club on Thurday 29th and Friday 30th June, with a record 19.5 - 4.5 victory over their United States counterparts in this annual event whic brings together the best collegiate players from both continents in a Ryder Cup style match.
Despite the presence of left hander Brian Harman, the youngest player ever to represent the USA in the Walker Cup, and other members of the USA team, such as Luke List, who have already competed in some of the Majors, it was the European side who dominated the match throughout, winning all four series of matches over the two days.
The opening fourball matches, on Thursday morning, set the tone for the event, with Europe taking a 4 - 0 lead. Match results (USA names first) were ;
Brian Harman & Chris Kirk
Alejandro Canizares & Pablo Martin
by 5 & 3
Luke List & Clay Ogden
Mark Haastrup & Joost Luiten
by 4 & 3
Ryan Baca & Ryan Blum
Rhys Davies & Richard Ramsay
by 6 & 4
Roberto Castro & Kevin Larsen
Oscar Floren & Stephen Lewton
by 2 & 1
The United States fared little better in the afternoon singles, taking only 2 of the 8 ties, to leave them trailing by 10 - 2 overnight. The singles results from thursday afternoon (USA names first) were;
Harman lost to Martin by 6 & 5
Ogden lost to Canizares by 2 & 1
Baca beat Haastrup by 3 & 2
List lost to Luiten by one hole
Castro beat Ramsay by one hole
Larsen lost to Floren by 6 & 4
Kirk lost to Lewton by one hole
Blaum lost to Davies by 4 & 3
On the Friday morning, the foursomes ties started in wet weather conditions and the European team continued their dominance, eventually taking all four ties to secure the Palmer Cup even before the final round of singles started.
The morning foursomes results (USA names first) were;
Blaum & Castro
Canizares & Martin
by 6 & 5
Baca and Ogden
Floren & Haastrup
by one hole
Harman & List
Luiten & Ramsay
by 3 & 2
Kirk & Larsen
Davies & Lewton
by 4 & 3
Despite the afternoon singles having no influence on the destination of the trophy, there were a number of aspects to the final series of matches that ensured an interest in proceedings would continue throughout the final afternoon.
Europe had an opportunity to record the highest winning margin since the USA won the innaugural event in 1997 by 19-5 against the Great Britain & Ireland team, who provided the opposition until 2002.
In addition, Alejandro Canizares, playing in a record 4th Palmer Cup, had the opportunity to complete an personal record of 8 wins from 8 in singles matches in Palmer Cup competition, whilst 6 of the European team had the opportunity to record a personal record of 4 points from 4 in the 2006 match.
In the event, Canizares was pushed all the way in his match before he eventually secured a one hole victory to complete his unprecidented singles record in the event.
Pablo Martin, Rhys Davies and Joost Luiten all joined Canizares with 4 wins from 4 in the 2006 match, with the standard of play throughout the week being exemplified by Luiten's finish to his match.
Two holes behind for most of the match, Luiten birdied the 14th to reduce the defecit and birdied the 16th to level the match before taking the lead for the first time with another birdie at the 17th. On the par 4 final hole, luiten hit a superb drive which came to rest a mere 18 inches from the hole to secure the match, with his closing run of birdie-par-birdie-birdie-eagle.
results of Friday afternoon singles (USA names first) were;
Castro lost to Martin by 3 & 2
Blaum beat Floren by 4 & 2
Harman lost to Haastrup by 5 & 3
Baca lost to Canzares by one hole
Larsen lost to Luiten by 2 holes
Ogden halved with Lewton
List lost to Davies by 3 & 2
Kirk beat Ramsay by one hole
EUROPE 19.5 USA 4.5
At the conclusion of the event the trophy was handed over to the victorious European team by a representative of the sponsors, Monster.