Reed on a high after becoming a double winner
Bristol & Clifton's Paul Reed believes his career is on the rise after his second EuroPro Tour victory in Ireland.
He carded a two-under-par 70 in the final round of the Ulster Bank Open at Galgorm Castle for a one shot victory worth £10,000. It follows his success at Fota Island in Southern Ireland ten months ago.
"My goal at the beginning of the year was to win a place in the top five of the order of merit and gain automatic qualification for the Challenge Tour next year," said the 30-year-old, from Long Ashton.
Last year he was 13th, winning £13,823 which was less than £2,000 short of his objective. Now he has risen to second after finishing tied eighth at Wensum Valley in the opening event.
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"I have every incentive to kick on from here," he said before embarking on this week's mission at Burhill Golf Club in Surrey.
"It's been a hard journey for me and I have learned a lot of lessons the hard way, but everything has started to work out over the past couple of years. This win keeps the momentum going."
Reed, who spent four years on a golf scholarship in South Carolina during his early years as a Gloucestershire county amateur, is grateful to former Filton and Bristol & Clifton player Simon Hurley, who just failed to reach the heights as a tour professional.
Hurley, who is now a pilot and gives flying lessons from his base in Cornwall, has been deeply involved in Reed's improvement. "We meet every two weeks and are constantly on the phone. He's a good mentor to me," he said.
Reed, who almost quit after a disappointing start to his professional career, made two early birdies and added another at the tenth on the final day in Ireland. Although he started one shot out of lead following rounds of 68 and 66, this put him ahead.
Despite dropping a shot at the 17th hole, he managed to hold off the challenge from Elliot Saltman (Archerfield Links) and George Woolgar.
"I was a bit of a nervous wreck on the last two holes," he admitted. "But the first 16 holes were really good for me. It was probably the best I've hit the ball this year.
"I made a point of not looking at the leaderboards until I realised my position at the 16th hole. That's when I started to get nervous, but I managed to stumble across the line.
"One I had knocked my ball to within two-and-a-half feet on the last I felt I would be able to get it in, though I still nearly missed it!
"There aren't many multiple winners on the EuroPro Tour, so I am very happy to be a two-time winner."