Thornton joy after sealing Tour card
SIMON THORNTON dedicated his magnificent seven-under-par round of 64 to his new-born son after sealing his card for the 2012 European Tour international schedule with the best round of the final day at the Apulia San Domenico grand final.
The pressure had been on the Newcastle, Co Down player to secure any sort of European Tour card after a level-par third round of 71.
But his star show on the final day -- earning him a share of sixth on 12-under, five behind winner Andrea Pavan -- secured Thornton (34) a top-15 place on the final Challenge Tour money list and his place on the main Tour.
Already celebrating before Saturday's final round after his wife, Ciara, had given birth to their second child, a baby boy, Thornton laughed off suggestions that he might decide on 'Dominic' as a name in honour of the course where he sealed his European Tour card for the second time.
"I haven't got a name for my son yet," he said. "I'm not sure about Dominic, but the decision will probably be made by my wife! However, I'd like to dedicate that round to my son.
"When the wind picked up today, it was in my favour, I started to feel confident. I played well all week and I played the same today, I just didn't make any mistakes like I did in previous rounds.
"I felt horrendous on Friday (with an illness), so to get through that and still get the card was great."