Wirral's independent local news website
A financial planning company is helping a talented Wirral golfer join the sport’s jet-set on the Ladies European Tour with a sponsorship package worth £10,000 for her debut season.
Wrexham-based Hadlow Edwards Wealth Management has backed former England Amateur International Rachael Goodall, from Wallasey, who has already made a solid start with top 30 finishes in her first two events which have earned her over 15,000 euros.
A stomach bug has hampered her progress but she is recovering from that and has a spring in her step as the Tour returns to Europe this month after its sunshine swing through Africa and the Gulf States.
Rachael, 31, is the touring professional from Heswall Golf Club where she’s been sharpening her game with partner and club assistant professional Jason Dransfield.
She said, “It means a lot to get this help from Hadlow Edwards. It takes a lot of the pressure off and they’re a great company to be associated with and they have a real interest in the sport as well.
“Last year on the Challenge Tour I had to pretty much play well at every event to make sure I could afford to tee it up again the following week.
“This year the competition is even more fierce and there’s more travelling so it costs £1500 to £2,000 to play a tournament.”
Hadlow Edwards Director James Parry, a seven-handicap golfer himself, said the firm had been keen to support a golfer from the region and his colleague, Dan Boden, a PA with the firm and a member at Northop Golf Club, had played with Jason who had suggested Rachael.
James said, “Women’s sport is booming with the Women’s Premier League in football and women’s golf is getting more and more exposure and rightly so because the standard is fantastic.
“That means it’s tough to reach the top but we’re delighted to be able to support her because she’s local and we believe she has a real talent and desire to succeed.
“Hopefully that support will just take a bit of the pressure off and help her make a real impact so we will be seeing her on our TV screens this year.”
Rachael’s golf began at just four years old when she persuaded her dad to let her have a go at Wirral Golf Club and in two years she was on the Cheshire team as she began a rise up the amateur game.
She recalls that at six she couldn’t see out of the bunkers and had to be lifted up by a golf pro who walked round with her but by 17 she was Cheshire Ladies Champion and playing for the England amateur team.
She turned professional in 2013 and has been playing in the Ladies European Tour Access Series since 2017 before winning her European Tour Card by finishing fourth in the Order of Merit last year.
It came down to the final tournament of the year and Rachael said, “Jason, my boyfriend, was caddying for me in the last tournament of the year and he told me not to look at the leader board which I always do, so I had no idea where I was.
“But being in the last group on the last day, I realised I was doing okay. It did help me focus and I wasn’t as nervous about the Order of Merit because I was focused on the tournament.
“It was such a big relief as well and it felt like all my dreams had come true. I have always wanted to play on the Ladies European Tour full time and with a full card, so to be able to do that it was something special.
“Plus, to have my boyfriend there was cool and to do it in Spain when I have a lot of good memories there was even more special.”
Rachael has given glimpses of her best form already to prove that she deserves to be on the Tour, firing a last round 69 in the Saudi Ladies International to win almost 10,000 euros and finish in the top 30 in a tournament won by Solheim Cup star Georgia Hall.
Next month she has a special date in her diary for the Volvo Scandinavian Mixed event, competed for by men and women and hosted by golf major winners Henrik Stenson and 10-time Major winner Annika Sorenstam.
Rachael added, “I’m really excited about that because Annika has been my idol since I was young and to play in her tournament is going to be great, especially as Jason is coming over and I’ll have him on my bag again.”
Image credit: Mandy Jones Photography
Why not follow birkenhead.news on Facebook and Twitter? You can also send story ideas to firstname.lastname@example.org