Mateusz Gradecki catapulted 107 places into sixth position on the Road to Mallorca Rankings after securing a maiden European Challenge Tour title at the Limpopo Championship, which concluded a run of six co-sanctioned events between the Challenge Tour and the Sunshine Tour in South Africa.
The 27-year-old entered the final round at Euphoria Golf Club five strokes behind Demark’s Oliver Hundebøll but carded a brilliant bogey-free six under par round of 66 to seal a three-shot victory.
Gradecki became only the second Challenge Tour winner to hail from Poland after Adrian Meronk, who won the 57º OPEN DE PORTUGAL @ MORGADO GOLF RESORT in 2019 on his way to graduating to the DP World Tour after finishing fifth on the Road to Mallorca Rankings.
JC Ritchie is in pole position on the Rankings on 92,212 points following back-to-back victories on home soil at the Bain’s Whisky Cape Town Open and Jonsson Workwear Open, taking full advantage of the co-sanctioned events between the Challenge Tour and Sunshine Tour. The 28-year-old will look to take his impressive form into Europe and become the first South African to be crowned Challenge Tour Number One.
Germany’s Alexander Knappe is 30,565 points behind Ritchie in second place after he secured his third Challenge Tour title at the season-opening Dimension Data Pro-Am. It was the 33-year-old’s first win since the 2016 Hainan Open, a year where he finished third on the Rankings to earn DP World Tour playing rights.
Belgian Christopher Mivis occupies third place on 51,108 points after he finished runner-up to Ritchie on both occasions during the South African Swing. The 33-year-old has made a strong start to 2022 Road to Mallorca and he will be hoping this is the year he can finally secure a maiden Challenge Tour title and earn promotion to the DP World Tour.
Frenchman Clément Sordet sits on 48,388 points in fourth position after he secured his fifth Challenge Tour title at the SDC Open as he defeated South African Ruan Conradie in a play-off. The 29-year-old finished second on the Challenge Tour Rankings in 2017 behind Finland’s Tapio Pulkkanen after winning the NBO Golf Classic Grand Final and he will be hoping to use a combination of experience and positive memories to file another successful campaign on the Road to Mallorca.
Hundebøll completes the top five, 3,232 points behind Sordet, following a maiden Challenge Tour victory at the Mangang Open. The Dane entered the final round five shots off the pace but carded seven birdies and just one bogey to record a one-shot victory in Bloemfontein. Hundebøll came close to picking up his second Challenge Tour victory at the Limpopo Championship as he entered the final round with a four-shot lead, however he eventually finished in a tie for fourth after a final round of 76.
The next stop on the Road to Mallorca will be Spain for the Challenge de España, taking place at Iberostar Real Club de Golf Novo Sancti Petri from May 19-22.