Peru Open kicks off second half of PGA TOUR Latinoamérica season
4 Min Read
Written by Greg Villalobos @PGATOURLA
LIMA, Peru—The PGA TOUR Latinoamérica players' love affair with this city keeps growing strong. Coming to Los Inkas Golf Club for the 10th time since the Tour launched in 2012, the course conditions for the Diners Club Peru Open couldn’t be better. It is here where the second half of the 2022-23 season kicks off, with this tournament one of only six left to play in the race to win the Totalplay Cup and claim the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour cards available.
“The course is pure. It’s really good. I mean, these fairways look like the greens back home sometimes,” said Kaylor Steger, a Racine, Wisconsin, native who is here for the first time.
For several years the Diners Club Peru Open was a fixture on the PGA TOUR Latinoamérica schedule at some point around the October-November time window. With the Tour switching to a wrap-around season, last year the tournament moved to late-April, and it proved a huge success.
“We just got out of the summer season here, so the sunny conditions help a lot. The course is really perfect at this time of the year. I can’t believe the course is in better condition than it was last year, but it is. I’m proud to be home this week,” says Peru’s own Joaquín Lolas, a lifelong member of Los Inkas, who lives in Jupiter, Florida.
Lolas joins Luis Fernando Barco as a duo of Peruvians playing full-time on PGA TOUR Latinoamérica. Lolas enters the week ranked 91st in the Totalplay Cup standings, while Barco checks in at 49th. A good week could make a huge difference for both players.
“Obviously, the goal is to try and finish as high as possible, but I’m trying to lower the expectations, trying to focus on the process on a daily basis. I feel I have been playing well, and if I keep it that way, things are going to happen,” says Barco, a Purdue University alum who became the first Peruvian to compete in a major championship, playing in the 2021 U.S. Open at Torrey Pines Golf Course outside San Diego.
Cristóbal Del Solar’s reign as Tour No. 1 is likely coming to an end this week, with several players within striking distance. Del Solar last played on PGA TOUR Latinoamérica in December, claiming a win and a third-place finish before focusing on the Korn Ferry Tour, where he is a full member. Currently ranked 38th at the next level, Del Solar will be playing the PGA TOUR’s Mexico Open at Vidanta this week. He was awarded an exemption at that event by virtue of his Totalplay Cup position.
Coming off a win at the JHSF Brazil Open, New Zealand’s Charlie Hillier enters the week only 12 points behind Del Solar, with Chandler Blanchet of the U.S. and Linus Lilliedahl of Sweden not far behind. Anyone currently inside the top 22 can mathematically charge to the top of the Totalplay Cup standings with a win at this event.
Totalplay Cup Points List through six of 12 events
|1||Cristóbal Del Solar (Chile)||711||--|
|2||Charlie Hillier (New Zealand)||699||12|
|3||Chandler Blanchet (U.S.)||676||35|
|4||Linus Lilliedahl (Sweden)||647||64|
|5||Matt Ryan (U.S.)||608||103|
|6||Conner Godsey (U.S.)||550||161|
|7||Jake McCrory (U.S.)||545||166|
|8||Davis Shore (U.S.)||532||179|
|9||Zack Fischer (U.S.)||500||211|
|10||Leandro Marelli (Argentina)||461||250|
Did you know Los Inkas Golf Club is set to become the first and only venue to welcome a PGA TOUR Latinoamérica event for a 10th time? The next-closest site is Ecuador’s Quito Tennis & Golf Club, which is set to host the Kia Open for a ninth time next week.
Tournament Fast Facts
Official Name: Diners Club Perú Open
Dates: April 27-30, 2023
Host venue: Los Inkas Golf Club, Par-72 (36-36) 6,882 yards
Field: 144 players from 19 countries
Countries and territories represented in the field: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, England, Finland, France, Mexico, New Zealand, Paraguay, Peru, Scotland, Sweden, United States and Venezuela
Last champion: José Toledo (not playing)
Purse: U.S. $175,000 – Winner’s share U.S. $31,500
Totalplay Cup points: Awarded to the top-55 and ties, with500 going to the winner
Cut: Top 55 and ties
There are four past tournament winners in this week’s field, with Argentina’s Leandro Marelli the most recent. Marelli, the 2019 champion, enters the week ranked 10th in the Totalplay Cup standings. The other past winners who are back this week are Argentina’s Julián Etulain, who won his first of back-to-back titles 10 years ago, in 2013, Mexico’s Rodolfo Cazaubón, who claimed the 2015 title, and Oklahoma native Charlie Saxon, who went bogey-free for his 54-hole win in 2017.
PGA TOUR Latinoamérica tournaments left to play this season
|April 27-30||Diners Club Peru Open||Los Inkas GC||Lima, Peru|
|May 4-7||Kia Open||Quito Tennis & Golf Club||Quito, Ecuador|
|Two weeks off|
|May 25-28||Colombia Classic||Ruitoque Golf & Country Club||Bucaramanga, Colombia|
|June 1-4||El Rincon Championship||El Rincón de Cajicá||Bogota, Colombia|
|Two weeks off|
|June 22-25||Jalisco Open GDL||Atlas Country Club||Guadalajara, Mexico|
|June 29-July 2||PGA TOUR Latinoamérica Championship||PGA Riviera Maya||Tulum, Quintana Roo, Mexico|
2022-23 PGA TOUR Latinoamérica Player Benefits
|2022-23 Final Totalplay Cup Position||Reward|
|No. 1||Will receive exempt status on the 2024 Korn Ferry Tour|
|Nos. 2-5||Will receive conditional status on the 2024 Korn Ferry|
|Nos. 1-5||Exempt into Final Stage of the 2023 PGA TOUR Qualifying Tournament|
|Nos. 6-25||Exempt into the second stage of the 2023 PGA TOUR Qualifying Tournament|