A historic day on the European Tour ended with Christine Wolf tied for the lead. The first Scandinavian Mixed Hosted by Henrik and Annika kicked off Thursday at Vallda Golf and Country Club with 78 men and 78 women playing for a trophy and a prize of 1,000,000 euros.
Austria’s Christine Wolf became the first woman to lead an event on the European Tour when she landed an 8-under-64 without a bogey to pace the field with England’s Sam Horsfield.
Hosts Annika Sorenstam and Henrik Stenson performed together alongside Thomas Bjorn. Stenson shot 2 under while Sorenstam and Bjorn both scored 1 over.
Wolf, who has his mother, Andrea, on the sack this week, played his last four holes in 4 under.
“We love to compete with the guys, we’ve had a few mixed events at home,” said Wolf, winner of the 2019 Hero Indian Women’s Open.
“It’s just fun. At home there are a lot of guys that I play against and I really like competing with them.
Horsfield has won twice in 2020 on the UK Swing and has finished in the top 5 twice so far in 2021. Having missed out on par 5s so far this season, Horsfield has zoned and birdieed the fourth.
“It was definitely different,” Horsfield said of the mixed format, “but I really enjoyed it. (Alice Hewson) was really good, I think she made four birdies in a row out of the last nine. I didn’t really know what to expect, to be completely honest with you, but she played really well and I had a great time.
Four players are tied at 7 under, including England’s Steven Brown and Ashley Chesters, Finland’s Kalle Samooja and Spaniard Pep Angles.
England’s Felicity Johnson, a two-time LET winner, holds a seventh share at 6 under. She performed alongside Robert Rock and Justin Walters.
“I missed the first one,” Johnson said. “I actually had a really good shot, but I got over it. If you bogeyed the first after hitting a good shot, you can’t really complain. It was easy golf there. The normal 5 that I was able to achieve. I birdied and made the most of it.
This marked Sorenstam’s first participation in Sweden in 13 years. His 10-year-old son Will was the group’s flag bearer.
“Especially for the kids to come here and watch me play,” Sorenstam told the European Tour. “They watch me on the pitch and on the green, they know how much time I spend there, so for them to come here and watch is very special.”