Dane dominant as Saudi Ladies Team International heats up

Dane dominant as Saudi Ladies Team International heats up
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Luna Sobron of Spain during the second round.
Dane dominant as Saudi Ladies Team International heats up
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Michele Thomson of Scotland during the second round.
Dane dominant as Saudi Ladies Team International heats up
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Emily Kristine Pedersen.
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Updated 18 November 2020

Dane dominant as Saudi Ladies Team International heats up

Dane dominant as Saudi Ladies Team International heats up
  • Team Pedersen lead Team Nuutinen with one round to go

KING ABDULLAH ECONOMIC CITY: Danish star Emily Kristine Pedersen has shown she isn’t done yet, threatening to pull off a Saudi sweep following another sparkling display on Wednesday in the Saudi Teams International golf tournament individual race.

Fresh off her victory in a tense playoff with England’s Georgia Hall in the $1 million Aramco Saudi Ladies International at the weekend, the talented Pedersen shot a 6-under 66 in glorious sunshine at the Royal Greens Golf & Country Club.

Pedersen’s second-round effort to go with a first round 69 gave her a two-day total of 135 to sit one back of Spain’s Luna Sobron Galmes.

The Spaniard charged to the top of the leaderboard after matching the women’s course record of 65 that Hall and Caroline Hedwall of Sweden registered in succession during the first two days of the SLI.

More importantly, the 24-year-old Pedersen and her team of Michele Thomson (Scotland) and Cassandra Hall (RSA) are the leaders (-27) with one round to go at the 54-hole Ladies European Tour event.

The event has a prize fund of $500,000, with $300,000 up for grabs in the four-team two-to-count competition and $200,000 in the individual section.

“We are loving playing together and having a good time,” said Thomson.

“It’s a great new event. We’re here for Emily to make all the birdies and us to make all the pars. It gives us a confidence boost that she (Pedersen) picked us, and we’re looking forward to tomorrow.”

Two shots back are Team Nuutinen (-25), with Team De Roey, Team Engstrom and Team Henry all firmly in contention at 23-under after taking advantage of some rare favorable afternoon scoring conditions.

Sustaining her strong performance, Galmes leads the individual contest by one shot on 10-under 134 total. The 26-year-old had a pitched-in eagle from 73 yards on 17, while also posting seven birdies with a red-hot putter.

“I’m very happy with my round,” she said.”The key was my putter, but you also have to be accurate with your long game on this course. I’m not thinking if I can win either event or not — I’m just playing my game.”

Pedersen said: “My focus is on the team this week and I am going to do my best regardless, for the team or the individual, and I hope I can keep making birdies and we can get it done as a team tomorrow.”

Long-hitting Dutchwoman Anne van Dam and first-round leader Sanna Nuutinen of  Finland are within striking distance of the leaders on 7-under and 6-under, with English star Charley Hull on -5.

On a drama-filled day, SLI runner-up Hall recovered from a poor opening day with a superb ball striking to match her own course record of 65 and finish on 4-under.

“I found putting the disappointment of last week behind me hard, especially with such a quick turnaround,” said Hall.

“It’s obviously quite a different format of things and to be honest my head really wasn’t quite in it yesterday. I did play very well today, so it was good to get a very low round in. I kind of needed it after yesterday.”


FIA launches probe into fiery Grosjean crash at Bahrain Grand Prix

Updated 03 December 2020

FIA launches probe into fiery Grosjean crash at Bahrain Grand Prix

FIA launches probe into fiery Grosjean crash at Bahrain Grand Prix
  • The Halo device is widely considered to have helped save Romain Grosjean’s life

SAKHIR, Bahrain: Motor racing chiefs announced on Thursday the launch of an investigation into Romain Grosjean’s fiery Bahrain crash, saying the forensic probe would take “around six to eight” weeks to complete.
The French Formula One driver somehow wrenched himself free from his blazing Haas car with just burns to his hands and a broken left foot after a collision with Daniil Kvyat on the first lap of Sunday’s Grand Prix. He left hospital on Wednesday.
In the immediate aftermath of the shocking smash there was widespread praise for modern safety measures in the sport, but also concern over what F1’s motor sport managing director Ross Brawn described as “unpredictable” failures.
The International Automobile Federation (FIA) said it had “initiated a detailed analysis of Romain Grosjean’s accident at the 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix.”
The FIA’s safety director, Adam Baker, said: “With so much data available in Formula 1, it allows us to accurately determine every element of what occurred and this work has already begun.
“We take this research very seriously and will follow a rigorous process to find out exactly what happened before proposing potential improvements.”
The FIA probe will look at a range of factors including Grosjean’s helmet, safety harness, headrest, in-car extinguisher and the Halo cockpit protection.
The Halo device is widely considered to have helped save Grosjean’s life as his car was sliced in two after careering into a barrier.
“The ‘halo’ saved the day and it saved Romain,” Brawn said on Sunday.
“There was controversy in developing it initially, but there can’t be any doubt now, so hats off to those who pushed for the introduction.”
But he added: “The fire is worrying. The split in the barrier is worrying and the barrier coming apart, but we can be happy with the safety of the car – that got us through today, but things failed in an unpredictable way.
“We haven’t seen anything like that for a very long time, but the barrier splitting normally results in a fatality.”
At the circuit new safety measures have been introduced to reduce the risk of a repeat crash at this Sunday’s Sakhir Grand Prix.
Two rows of tires wrapped in a conveyor belt have been installed in front of a reconstructed guardrail at the exit of Turn Three.
Several drivers expressed serious concerns at the failure of the barrier and the manner in which it was punctured.
In other changes to the circuit, where this weekend’s Grand Prix will be using the shorter “outer loop’, a kerb has been removed at Turn Nine – which was used as Turn 13 last Sunday – and a tire barrier in the approach to that corner has been extended and enlarged to four rows in depth.
Grosjean left hospital on Wednesday and in an Instagram post he highlighted the professionalism of a marshal with an extinguisher and the FIA doctor in the following Safety Car, who was on the scene very quickly.
“I told him he was a hero,” said Grosjean.
“He went into the fire as much as he could to save me. I felt Ian’s hands pulling me over the barrier and I knew I was safe... life will never be the same again.”
Grosjean is resting and healing from burns at a hotel in Abu Dhabi where he hopes he will be fit enough to race in the season-closing race next weekend.