Frenchwoman Jade Schaeffer earned her second Ladies European Tour title at the inaugural Raiffeisenbank Prague Golf Masters at Albatross Golf Resort near Prague in the Czech Republic last September.
The 25-year-old from Paris shot a final round of 70 to win by two shots over compatriot Julie Greciet.
Schaeffer has returned to defend her title at Albatross, which was recently ranked the No.1 course in the Czech Republic by Golf Digest. Here she discusses memories of her victory and her hopes for this year.
What are your memories of your last year´s victory at the Prague Golf Masters?
A very good welcome, the people are very very nice. I think it is a very good course, it is a young course, the grass is beautiful and the greens also. It‘s a very good place to be.
Looking back, what was most difficult and, on the other hand, most enjoyable for you?
I think for my win it‘s the last day, I had four shots in advance but it is not always easy to be the leader. And to know that you can win and staying with the same mentality and not to stress too hard.
The most enjoyable is the last putt but because my friend Melodie, she was with me and I cried. I think it is this moment and after of course the speech, it’s always hard because I think of my Dad because at my first win I give my win to my Dad, he is in the sky now. And always I think for him the win and for all tournaments it’s for my Dad.
Has this victory changed anything in your life?
Yes, of course because it is my second win. And I think after you win one tournament it’s good of course and you have a good mentality because you know you are a good player but if you win a second one it is a very big confirmation and I think now I can win more tournaments and now I know.
How has your golf been going since?
It’s more good because I have a good feeling. I think it’s the same golf since a long time but now it’s better because I have more confidence in my head, it is better.
Regarding the defence of your title, to what are you looking forward?
Of course, winning another time!
How confident do you feel?
I feel good because after Switzerland I have seen that I played very, nice. I had a good iron game and it’s just always the putting. Last year I took so many putts (but still won) so I hope I can do it again.
In terms of the golf course, how did you like Albatross Golf Resort?
I think it is maybe one of the best courses this one. I don’t have so many attachments to this golf course. It has 18 good holes and I would say it is in my top five, for sure.
How did you spend last winter´s break?
I started very late my training this year but I restart with a very good coach. I don’t have a new coach but in my head it’s better and more organisation and maybe it’s after the two wins you can have other objectives. My organisation has changed, my mentality changed. And after my operation in January last year on my wrist it is also another change too. My wrist is better, I am wearing the bandage only for protection, just for my head, the mentality is better. I withdrew from Germany and Slovakia because it was inflamed but I played in Holland and it was a very good sensation and last week too in Switzerland.
You also play LET Access Series. What is the reason and how is the competition there?
I think it is good training because you have so many good players, you don’t have so many categories on the tour but you have Marion Ricordeau and Carly Booth, very good players. You can see that its very good practice from the recent results of Carly Booth.
What are your plans for this season?
After Dinard, I started too strong before Morocco at the first half of the season. I have the same objective, to get to the Evian Masters, but its changed a little because I didnt‘ play as many tournaments. I only played four tournaments this year, compared to other players, who have played 11.
Did you change something in your preparation or technique this year?
No, just that I have seen my coach more. I have been to see him four times in the winter and for one week before Evian. He will come with me to the Evian Masters. I think because I have a good objective this year, it’s not different but it’s more intense. I don’t change anything technical I just change the quantity.