Lucus delights in best year in golf
PUBLISHED: 15:23 02 January 2002 | UPDATED: 11:06 03 March 2010
GOLF: Alex Lucas has no doubts that 2001 was his best year in golf. The big-hitting 28-year-old, who is a professional at Fynn Valley, is now hoping to take his form a stage further over the next 12 months.
ALEX Lucas has no doubts that 2001 was his best year in golf.
The big-hitting 28-year-old, who is a professional at Fynn Valley, is now hoping to take his form a stage further over the next 12 months.
"Last year was my best by a mile," said Alex who came to Suffolk when he turned professional in 1994.
But it was not until 2000 that he became a fully qualified professional, having failed his exams in January of the previous year that meant he was unable to play in any PGA events.
Alex said: "I had to spend a year teaching before I could get out on the course again."
Last year's form has given Alex a great deal of hope for the future.
He qualified for the final qualifying stages of the Open Championship, was 21st in the Sunderland Masters in Scotland and also reached the national finals of the Assistants Championship.
Locally, he won the 36-hole Hopkins Homes Championship at Ufford Park in May, was 12th in the East Region Order of Merit and seventh in the East Region Assistants Order of Merit.
On top of that he won four Suffolk Winter Alliance meetings as well as several Pro-Ams.
"A lot to do with the success I had was down to my mental attitude," said Alex.
"I find I don't get nervous any more. My temperament has also improved and as a result I'm more relaxed.
"In the past I used to go out to play with too much expectation, and then used to lose my rag."
Alex aims to play a lot more this year, including a few more national events, but how many of those he plays will be governed by money.
"I'd like to play on the Euro Tour, but each event will cost £500 before I even hit a ball.
"What I do want to do is to improve on last year. I want to finish in the top ten of the East Region Order of Merit, and if I don't I would see that as a backward step."
One of Alex's New Year resolutions is to become fitter and healthier. "I've given up smoking, but I've also got to lose some more weight."
Alex, who hails from Dudley in Worcestershire, was captain at both under-18 and under-21 county level. By the time he turned professional he was off scratch, and nowadays he's certainly the longest hitter in Suffolk.
In 1994 he answered an advertisement in a golf magazine to work with Tony Dobson at the Bourne Hill Golf Centre, and has stayed ever since.
Of course, the ultimate goal is a place on the European Tour, and Alex certainly has the ability to achieve that objective.