Caroline Afonso has been a consistent performer throughout 2011 in her fourth season on the Ladies European Tour. She is justifiably proud of her achievements, having earned a career best finish of second at the UNIQA Ladies Golf Open in Austria and tied second at the Deloitte Ladies Open in Holland. She also ended third at the Aberdeen Ladies Scottish Open and will hope to finish the season with a flourish in Dubai.
Caroline: how do you assess your season?
I’m quite happy, although the season is not yet finished! I’m quite happy because I made three podium finishes and an additional top ten in Slovakia. The rest of the season was average but I’m satisfied overall.
What are your hopes for the end of 2011?
I have withdrawn from China but I will go to Dubai so it’s all to do there and hope to have a good performance if I can in Dubai. I will prepare well before hand. It will be my fourth appearance in Dubai and I’m looking forward to it because I love the Emirates golf course.
What was the highlight of this year?
My first top three finish, my first podium, because I was in the middle of the field in Holland and shot 67 to finish second so that will long be engraved in my memory.
When will we see your first victory?
I don’t like to talk about that, but I will continue to work hard and then one day I hope to win. I will not think about winning.
How would you describe your friendship with fellow LET professional Virginie Lagoutte-Clement, her husband Sebastien and daughter, Victoria?
They are like my family and we are very close. We have been friends for many years and get along very well. We discuss a lot and we are like a family. Virginie is like a sister to me and we do a lot together.
How will you approach the 2012 season?
Perhaps my objectives will change next year but I don’t want to change too much because I have had three podium finishes, so I will engross myself in my training this winter and try to work in the same way to see if I can get even better results.
Will you continue to work hard in the gym like last winter?
I think so, yes. I will do a lot of physical work with my coach Jean-Jacques Rivet and I will speak to my coach Philippe Mendiburu about my objectives for next season. I will go to Biarritz to train and make a plan for next season.
You won twice on the LET Access Series in France last year. Will you continue to play on that Tour?
I think I will play on the Access next year as well because there are more tournaments and it is very well organised. If the schedule permits I will play in those tournaments again.
After you finish golf, what would you like to do?
Coaching, I think. It’s a long way away!
What do you enjoy apart from golf?
At the moment it’s only golf. It’s a lot of sacrifice but its golf and that’s it.
What is your ultimate career goal?
I don’t have any particular ambitions; I am just enjoying the journey and my life on tour.