La Zagaleta, quality, design and sustainability for the PING Junior Solheim Cup

The Old Course, one of the two courses of the urbanization located in the town of Benahavís, Malaga, has everything ready to host on September 18 and 19 the junior competition that will lead to the Solheim Cup

La Zagaleta, and more specifically its Old Course, will be the magnificent host of the PING Junior Solheim Cup, the competition that since 2002 precedes the Solheim Cup and in which the best players between 14 and 18 years of age from Europe and the USA face each other.

Carlos Rodiles, former European Tour player and Sports Director of La Zagaleta, highlighted the importance of hosting a tournament of these characteristics, “because although we are the most exclusive club on the Costa del Sol and, undoubtedly, the most private, that does not mean that we do not bet on renowned events such as the PING Junior Solheim Cup”.

Regarding the choice of the Old Course as the venue for the tournament, “this course, as its name indicates, is the first to be built in La Zagaleta, specifically in 1994, and although both courses (the second is called the New Course) are in extraordinary condition, the Old Course is possibly the most appropriate for a high-level competition,” explained Rodiles.

So much so that the Old Course has not needed any specific action for the PING Junior Solheim Cup, since “365 days is able to host any international level tournament. What we have had to do is ‘play’ with the location of the tees, since being junior players, we have made a mix. Some holes will have white tees, others yellow, and even blue and red… In addition, we have taken into account the Match Play format so that there is spectacle, with risk-reward holes, where the player who takes a risk and hits a good shot will have an advantage over the more conservative one. The risk-taker will take a real risk and will have to hit a perfect shot for that risk to materialize in success. Likewise, we will also use the flag positions, with some really challenging ones for the players”.

In Match Play tournaments, the important thing comes on the final holes, but we have the 4th hole, a par 5, where the tees will be placed to encourage the players to reach the green of two, but they will have to be very precise because the driver drop is in the narrowest area of the fairway. That’s where the players who want to take a risk will be seen”.

“Then there is hole 7, a par 4 with the tees on the red bars for the hitters to try to reach the green in one, although they will have to play very straight because to the right of the green there is a penalty area and to the left there are two fairly deep bunkers.”

“Finally there is the 18th hole, one of the most spectacular on the course. In Match Play you don’t always play the last hole but I expect a lot of matches to come here because it is a real risk-reward par 5. It has water on the left tee, then there is a creek that goes into the middle of the fairway and at the end there is water again on the right side of the green. It will be possible to reach it in two, but there are dangers on all sides and it is a hole where you can make anything from eagle to double bogey”.

On the other hand, La Zagaleta will also contribute to make the PING Junior Solheim Cup a tournament as sustainable as possible, since the club uses 100% recycled water for irrigation, only uses electric buggies and has fountains to refill bottles, dispensing with plastic containers, without forgetting the large amount of trees and vegetation that exist both on the golf courses and in the urbanization, which extends over 900 hectares.

With all these ingredients, there is no doubt that La Zagaleta can become the setting for one of the best editions of the PING Junior Solheim Cup in its history and as Carlos Rodiles concludes: “Leaving aside the competition itself, I hope that all participants will have the opportunity to relax and enjoy a natural environment of extraordinary beauty”.

The Solheim Cup 2023, an event of exceptional public interest whose official venue is Finca Cortesin, is sponsored by PING, Costa del Sol Tourism and Rolex as global partners; and by the Consejería de Turismo, Cultura y Deporte de la Junta de Andalucía, with co-financing from the European Union, Acosol, the Marbella Town Hall and the Benahavís Town Hall as official partners, and Casares Town Hall and Reale Seguros are official sponsors. Solán de Cabras, Eversheds Sutherland, Toro, Vithas, E-Z-GO, Jet Set Sports and Olin are official suppliers. BMW Automotor Premium is official sustainability car. Peninsula and Trablisa are sustainability partners. Marca and Radio Marca are official media. Promoted and organised by Deporte & Business. LET, LPGA, RFEG, CSD and RFGA collaborate in its organisation.

More information on the website, on the Twitter account @SolheimCup2023, on the Instagram account @solheimcup2023esp and on the Facebook page Solheim Cup 2023.