Sam to get his chance in Asia
IT was a case of make the Asian Tour or start looking for a new job when Lismore golfer Sam Brazel went to the Asian Qualifying School in Thailand last month.
Brazel, 34, finished in the top 40 from the 761 entrants and will play on the tour in 2013 for the first time.
He has been a regular on the Queensland Troppo Tour for a decade and works in the pro shop at the Lismore Workers Golf Club.
"If I didn't make the tour I would havehad to come home and look for another job somewhere," Brazel said.
"I really just wanted to secure a place to play for the next few years.
"I want to get into tournament golf every week and it's the first time I've held a tour card on a main tour."
It was his first attempt at qualifying, with the Asian Tour a pathway to events on the lucrative European Tour.
"I'm really looking forward to getting myself into some good tournaments and there are some pathways to the European Tour," Brazel said.
"There are a lot of co-sanctioned events so if you play well early you can get into the re-rank and if the rank is high enough you can get a start in those events."
He will play in Burma later this month followed by India in March.
Meanwhile, another Lismore golfer Rhein Gibson is heading for the Guinness Book of Records.
Gibson shot a provisional world record for the lowest golf score with 55 strokes in 18 holes at the Rivers Oaks Golf Club, Oklahoma, in the United States last May.
The 26-year-old has been playing in the US and is on the One Asia Tour this year.
"He was home the other week and said it was in the process of getting ratified," Lismore Workers Golf Club professional Peter Jaeger said of Gibson's remarkable round.
"That 55 has got him a start in Japan at one of the oldest and biggest Japanese tours in April.
"He's a good player and it might just be the break he needs."
Jaeger said it was a thrill for the club to have both men at a high level this year.
"It's fantastic and the members are buzzing because they'll be able to watch when the tournaments are televised," he said.
"It shows where golf can take you and we're lucky on the Northern Rivers because you can learn and play just about anywhere.
"It's a great opportunity for Sam and his game is suited to a lot of those courses.
"Where the boys have been living has pretty much determined which tours they've gone for."