Blistering start to Harper’s season

Kevin Harper continued where he left off last season by winning the Titleist-Footjoy Young Professionals’ League meeting at Forest Hills - and almost in record-breaking fashion, writes Peter Godsiff.

But for an unexpected bogey on the driveable 300-yard par four 10th hole, he would have equalled the mark set by Lanhydrock’s Richard O’Hanlon in winning the Forest Classic Order of Merit tournament there last season.

Sidmouth assistant Harper, 29, ended last year in style. He won the Young Professionals’ League title at Bath and then became the West Region PGA Assistants’ champion by a seven-shot margin at Exeter.

Harper was runner-up at last year’s Powerade PGA Assistants’ Championship, then came second in the Australian Crown Lager PGA National Futures Championship in New South Wales. He lost in a three-way play-off for the Europro Tour Championship at Aphrodite Hills, Cyprus.

Harper made a blistering start at the maturing course in the Forest of Dean, going out in five-under-par 31 and returning in two-under 34 for his 65.

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