Chiara Horder (The R&A)
Chiara Horder has won The 120th Women’s Amateur Championship after a convincing 7&6 win over Annabelle Pancake in the 36-hole Final at Prince’s.
The 20-year-old became the third player from Germany to lift The Women’s Amateur trophy in the last six years after Aline Krauter in 2020 and Leonie Harm in 2018.
Having led by three holes at the halfway stage, Horder surged to victory in the afternoon session thanks to consistent driving, precise iron play and an excellent short game which included four birdies on par-3s.
Horder has secured places in the field for the Amundi Evian Championship and AIG Women’s Open later this summer and the Chevron Championship and US Women’s Open in 2024 by virtue of her win. The German national team player, ranked 273rd on the Women’s World Amateur Golf Ranking® (WAGR®), will also, by tradition, receive an invitation to compete in next year’s Augusta National Women's Amateur Championship.
Horder, who knocked out the world’s leading women’s amateur golfer Ingrid Lindblad in the semi-finals, joins a Championship roll of honour which includes Babe Zaharias, Catriona Matthew, Carlota Ciganda, Anna Nordqvist, Georgia Hall, Celine Boutier and Leona Maguire.
Pancake, 21, was bidding to be the first winner from the United States of America since Kelli Kuehne in 1996. The Clemson University student was cheered on by her dad, Tony, who arrived on Father’s Day to support his daughter after an overnight flight from Indiana helped by funds from members at Crooked Stick Golf Club.
However, there was to be no win for Pancake on her first-ever visit to the UK as Horder become the third player to win The Women’s Amateur at Prince’s. Joyce Wethered earned the first of her four victories in 1922 and American Carol Sorenson triumphed in 1964.
From a record 232 entries, Prince’s welcomed a world-class field of 144 players representing 36 countries, including 12 players ranked inside the top-50 on the WAGR, with Horder coming out on top after a wonderful week of golf on the Kent coast.
In the morning session, Horder made a fast start. After Pancake’s bogey at the 1st, Horder made birdies at the opening two par-3 holes, the 3rd and 5th, to go three up and maintain the lead after eight holes. In the softer conditions after overnight rain, Pancake, placed 123rd on WAGR, made a timely birdie at the 9th to reduce the deficit and receive a warm hug from her father who had just arrived after his travels.
Nevertheless, a double bogey at the 10th from Pancake after a poor drive and a third birdie two of the morning from Horder on the 11th, following more accurate iron play, extended the lead to four holes. The American again claimed one back with a birdie at the long 12th before the highlight of the morning came at the 13th when Horder holed a brilliant 40-yard chip to the delight of the large crowd.
Pancake once more replied with a birdie at the 15th only for Horder to drive the green at the par-4 16th and restore a four-up lead. Pancake’s third birdie of the back nine gave her hope going into the afternoon action, but Horder was in command at three-up after playing 18 holes in four-under-par.
In the afternoon, a combination of Horder’s excellent play and difficulties for Pancake saw the German claim the title.
Horder birdied the par-5 20th and again the short 21st for a five-hole lead before a number of troubles for Pancake which saw her make costly bogeys at the 22nd and 23rd. A seven-hole lead soon became eight after another bogey from the American at the 25th. Pancake’s first birdie of the afternoon at the 26th reduced the deficit and another came at the 29th to cut the lead to six, but another excellent iron shot from Horder at the par-5 30th sealed the victory.
Horder’s triumph adds to German amateur and professional success after Antonia Steiner won the Girls’ U16 Amateur Championship at Enville in April, while Sophia Popov won the AIG Women’s Open in 2020.
The R&A again provided live video coverage of the Final on its website, www.randa.org, as well as its YouTube channel. Live coverage was also broadcast by Sky Sports Golf.
Prince’s played host to The Open in 1932, won by Gene Sarazen. The club also welcomed Final Qualifying for The Open from 2018 to 2022, while the course co-hosted The Amateur Championship in 2013 and 2017.
View final scoring from The Women’s Amateur Championship here.
Portmarnock will host The 121st Women’s Amateur Championship from 24-29 June 2024.
Chiara Horder, Germany
On the victory:
“I feel amazing. I'm so happy. I am so fortunate to win. I mean it's one of the biggest amateur championships. I can't believe it, just super happy. It's incredible. We've played so many rounds the last couple days. It's been like 11 rounds, and then playing close to 36 today, it was exhausting. But I stayed in it and I enjoyed it. It’s so special for me.
“After the morning break, I just tried to get back in again, collect my energy and just stay in there. I hit my fairways and greens and gave myself opportunities so that was good.”
On major exemptions:
“That gives me goosebumps. That's insane. The opportunities are incredible and I am so fortunate. I cannot believe that I will be teeing it up then. It's definitely a goal just to compete in these majors. I mean competing in the AIG Women's Open is just amazing. It's definitely a dream.”
On German success:
“It’s been amazing. They have been such an inspiration and to follow up with them is just amazing. Sophia is an idol and such an inspiration.”
Annabelle Pancake, USA
“My goal is always to beat the golf course and the golf course kind of kicked me around today. Chiara played great. I think she was four-under this morning. She definitely had a great day and I kind of struggled but that's okay. I'm so thankful that I was able to come here and that I had a great time.
“With my mum, Libby, caddying, we had fun. We didn't get into any arguments so that's always a positive thing! It was then so cool to see my dad. He told me that he might be able to make it so I wasn't for sure. But when I saw him it was such a special thing.”
ABOUT THE Ladies British Amateur
This championship, along with the US Women’s
Amateur Golf Championship, is considered the
important in women’s amateur golf.
The first stage of the Championship involves
players each of whom plays two rounds of 18
The 64 lowest scores over the 36 holes will
in the match play stage of the Championship.
match will consist of one round of 18 holes,
The ‘Pam Barton Memorial Salver’ is awarded to
winner of the Championship, while the runner-
receives The Diana Fishwick Cup. An
team award is presented after the stroke play
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