Arnold Villacencio blew a three-under card with three bogeys at the back but still took a one-stroke lead with a 72 at the start of the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. (ICTSI) Philippine Golf Tour Q-School yesterday as the rest wavered in tough condition at Eagle Ridge’s Norman Course in General Trias, Cavite on Tuesday.
Villacencio, who missed by just one rung the top 40 cut for next year’s tour regulars, hit four birdies against a bogey after 11 holes but dropped three straight strokes from No. 12 and fought for a couple of scrambling pars in the finishing holes to salvage a 35-37 card.
Still, it proved enough to put him on top of the 72-player field chasing slots in next year’s ICTSI PGT as Rico Depilo fumbled with a 73 for second and Jun Rates, Hanson So Jr. and amateur Magno Arancon carded identical wind-blown 75s.
Erwin Madrileño sputtered with a 40 at the back and settled for a 76 while Artemio Murakami led the 77 scorers who included Miguel Ochoa, Kenneth Kano, Allan Remata, Mariano Reanturco and Jesus Casas Jr.
Forty slots are up for grabs in the 72-hole tournament organized by Pilipinas Golf Tournaments, Inc. with 10 amateurs seeking to join next year’s pro circuit sponsored by ICTSI, including Francis Morilla, Leonard Lofranco and Noel Langgamin, who all turned in 78s.
Carito Villaroman and Ramon Brobio, both former junior world champions trying to regain their tour cards, will have a lot of catching up to do after an 80 and 88, respectively.
Meanwhile, the PGTI will also conduct a separate Q-School for foreign pros to accommodate the growing number of entries who have signified their intention to play in Asia’s fastest growing pro golf league sponsored by International Container Terminal Services, Inc.
The foreign Q-School will be held Jan. 13-17 at Eagle Ridge’s Aoki layout with Canadian Rick Gibson heading the early roster. Deadline for listup is on Jan. 10.
Entry fee of the foreign Q-School is pegged at P10,000. For details, contact PGT (Jocelyn Duque) at 049-5492564 or 0915-7824751 or download application at pgt.ph.