Mallorca, Spain: Germany’s Max Rottluff is currently placed 13th on the Challenge Tour’s Road to Mallorca Rankings heading into the Rolex Challenge Tour Grand Final supported by The R&A as he looks to secure his DP World Tour card for 2024.
The top 20 on the Rankings at the conclusion of the Rolex Challenge Tour Grand Final will earn promotion to the DP World Tour.
The 30-year-old, who resides in the United States, has two victories to his name this season with his first arriving in the UAE Challenge at Saadiyat Beach Golf Club back in May. The UAE Challenge was Rottluff’s first Challenge Tour event of the season, and he took the last spot in the field.
“I didn't know whether I was going to be in the field until the Sunday before. When I woke up, I booked the flight, booked the hotel, and flew out later that night and arrived in Abu Dhabi on the Monday night.
“It was the first time I played golf in the UAE and it wasn't the preparation that you would call ideal necessarily, but at the same time, I was playing a lot of golf in the weeks leading up to it.
“I was more focused on getting the body right. I was coming off an eight or nine hour time difference. So working with that, getting the body ready and then just kind of hanging in there as the week progressed.”
Saadiyat Beach course record
Rottluff opened with a four under par round of 68 to place him in joint second. That was followed up on Friday with a one over par 73, but it was moving day where he made a real charge up the leaderboard with a course record 63 to put himself into contention for the final round, just two shots back from Manuel Elvira.
With blustery conditions coming off the Arabian Gulf, Rottluff carded a two under par round of 70 to reach a 14 under total and finish one shot clear of Frenchman Ugo Coussaud.
“I remember vividly how stressful it all was. Even finishing second was a great accomplishment, but winning has changed my whole year due to the category exemption status I now have.
“So it was huge, especially after the last couple of years as I was struggling a little bit. So to get the win is always big and for me it was the best tournament of the year so far.
Fast track to achieve season goals
“It kind of reframed the whole year for me and put me on a fast track to achieve my season goals. It also gave me the motivation to keep going and work even harder and you want it even more.”
Rottluff now looks to seal his DP World Tour card at this week’s Rolex Challenge Tour Grand Final supported by The R&A, at a venue which he has fond memories of even though it has been over a decade since he last visited Club de Golf Alcanada.
“The last time I was here was like 12 years ago, we would come and spend the winter here with the German national team. I can’t really remember too much other than the aioli is fantastic! Standing here, the view is obviously just phenomenal.”
“I like where I'm at on the points list so I'm really just looking forward to enjoying the week and having my family here with me. I can’t wait to get going.”
Rottluff tee's off on Thursday at 08:44 local time alongside England's Will Enefer and Spain's Ivan Cantero.