European Golf Tour
PGA European - Alstom Open de France Preview
From The Sports Network

DATES: Thursday, July 5th through Sunday, July 8th
SITE: Le Golf National (Albatross Course), Paris, France
COURSE ARCHITECT: Hubert Chesneau (1990), Robert Van Hagge, consultant
PAR: 71
YARDAGE: 7,331
Hole-By-Hole:1 - Par 4 416 Yds10 - Par 4 383 Yds
2 - Par 3 213 Yds11 - Par 3 191 Yds
3 - Par 5 563 Yds12 - Par 4 443 Yds
4 - Par 4 487 Yds13 - Par 4 427 Yds
5 - Par 4 405 Yds14 - Par 5 607 Yds
6 - Par 4 383 Yds15 - Par 4 399 Yds
7 - Par 4 481 Yds16 - Par 3 175 Yds
8 - Par 3 208 Yds17 - Par 4 484 Yds
9 - Par 5 596 Yds18 - Par 4 470 Yds
36 3,752 Yds35 3,579 Yds
Annual:  96th
Television:  Golf Channel - Thursday/Friday -- 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. (et),
  - Saturday/Sunday -- 8 a.m.-12 p.m. (et)
Defending Champion:  Thomas Levet
Runner-Up:  Mark Foster, Thorbjorn Olesen
Tournament Record:  262 (Lu Liang Huan, 1971)
54-Hole Record:  194 (Seve Ballesteros, 1985)
36-Hole Record:  130 (Seve Ballesteros, 1985)
18-Hole Record:  62 (Lu Liang Huan, Vicente Fernandez, 1971 - Biarritz G.C;
  Seve Ballesteros, 1985 - Saint Germain Golf Club)
Course Record:  62 (Eduardo Romero, 2005; Martin Kaymer, 2009)
Total Purse:  $3,972,805 (3,150,000 euros)
Shares:  1st Place - $652,680; 2nd Place - $435,120; 3rd Place - $245,146
2011 Finish
Thomas Levet277Richie Ramsay281
Mark Foster278Hennie Otto282
Thorbjorn Olesen278Brendan Steele282
Martin Kaymer280James Morrison282
Simon Khan281Anthony Wall283
Past Alstom Open de France Winners
YearWinner (Score) -- Runners-Up
2011Thomas Levet (277) -- Mark Foster, Thorbjorn Olesen
2010*Miguel Angel Jimenez (273) -- Francesco Molinari, Alejandro Canizares
2009*Martin Kaymer (271) -- Lee Westwood
2008Pablo Larrazabal (269) -- Colin Montgomerie
2007Graeme Storm (277) -- Soren Hansen
2006John Bickerton (273) -- Padraig Harrington
2005*Jean-Francois Remesy (273) -- Jean Van de Velde
2004Jean-Francois Remesy (272) -- Richard Green, Nick O'Hern
2003Philip Golding (273) -- David Howell
2002Malcolm Mackenzie (274) -- Trevor Immelman
2001Jose Maria Olazabal (268) -- Costantino Rocca, Greg Turner, Paul Eales
2000Colin Montgomerie (272) -- Jonathan Lomas
1999*Retief Goosen (272) -- Greg Turner
1998Sam Torrance (276) -- Bernhard Langer, Mathew Goggin, Olivier Edmond,
Massimo Florioli
1997Retief Goosen (271) -- Jamie Spence
1996*Robert Allenby (272) -- Bernhard Langer
1995Paul Broadhurst (274) -- Neal Briggs
1994Mark Roe (274) -- Gabriel Hjertstedt
1993*Costantino Rocca (273) -- Paul McGinley
1992Miguel Angel Martin (276) -- Martin Poxon
1991Eduardo Romero (281) -- Sam Torrance, Jose Maria Olazabal
1990*Philip Walton (275) -- Bernhard Langer
1989Nick Faldo (273) -- Hugh Baiocchi, Bernhard Langer, Mark Roe
1988Nick Faldo (274) -- Wayne Riley, Denis Durnian
1987Jose Rivero (269) -- Howard Clark
1986Seve Ballesteros (269) -- Vicente Fernandez
1985Seve Ballesteros (263) -- Sandy Lyle
1984Bernhard Langer (270) -- Jose Rivero
1983*Nick Faldo (277) -- Jose Maria Canizares, David J. Russell
1982Seve Ballesteros (278) -- Sandy Lyle
1981Sandy Lyle (270) -- Bernhard Langer
1980Greg Norman (268) -- Ian Mosey
1979Bernard Gallacher (284) -- Willie Milne
1978Dale Hayes (269) -- Seve Ballesteros
1977Seve Ballesteros (282) -- John Bland, Antonio Garrido, Manuel Pinero,
Ian Stanley
1976Vincent Tshabalala (272) -- Salvador Balbuena
1975Brian Barnes (281) -- Neil Coles, Eamonn Darcy, Dale Hayes,
John O'Leary
1974Peter Oosterhuis (284) -- Peter Townsend
1973Peter Oosterhuis (280) -- Tony Jacklin
1972*Barry Jaeckel (265)
1971Lu Liang Huan (262) -- Vicente Fernandez, Roberto de Vicenzo
1970David Graham (268)
1969J.Garaialde (277)
1968P.J. Butler (272)
1967B.J. Hunt (271)
1966D.J. Hutchinson (274)
1965R.Sota (268)
1964Roberto de Vicenzo (272)
1963Bruce Devlin (273)
1962A.Murray (274)
1961Kel Nagle (271)
1960Roberto de Vicenzo (275)
1959D.C. Thomas (276)
1958F.van Donck (276)
1957F.van Donck (266)
1956A.Miguel (277)
1955Byron Nelson (271)
1954F.van Donck (275)
1953Bobby Locke (276)
1952Bobby Locke (268)
1951H.Hassanein (278)
1950Roberto de Vicenzo (279)
1949U.Grappasonni (275)
1948F.Cavalo (287)
1947Henry Cotton (285)
1946Henry Cotton (269)
1945Not Held
1944Not Held
1943Not Held
1942Not Held
1941Not Held
1940Not Held
1939M.Pose (285)
1938Marcel Dallemagne (282)
1937Marcel Dallemagne (278)
1936Marcel Dallemagne (277)
1935S.F. Brews (293)
1934S.F. Brews (284)
1933B.Gadd (283)
1932A.J. Lacey (295)
1931Aubrey Boomer (291)
1930E.R. Whitcombe (282)
1929Aubrey Boomer (283)
1928@C.Tolley (283)
1927George Duncan (299)
1926Aubrey Boomer (280)
1925Arnaud Massy (291)
1924@C.Tolley (290)
1923J.Ockenden (288)
1922Aubrey Boomer (286)
1921Aubrey Boomer (284)
1920Walter Hagen (298)
1919Not Held
1918Not Held
1917Not Held
1916Not Held
1915Not Held
1914J.D. Edgar (288)
1913George Duncan (304)
1912J.Gassiat (289)
1911Arnaud Massy (284)
1910James Braid (298)
1909J.H. Taylor (293)
1908J.H. Taylor (300)
1907Arnaud Massy (298)
1906Arnaud Massy (292)

* - Won in Playoff

@ - Amateur

Note:Formerly called Open de France (2003-05), Novotel Perrier Open de France
(1999-2002), Peugeot Open de France (1984-98), Paco Rabanne Open de France (1980-83), French Open (1971-79).

Top Contenders in the Field
Thomas LevetT-15---T-34T-68mc58thT-3069thmcWon
Thorbjorn Olesen---------------------------T-2
Martin Kaymer---------------T-7mcWonT-64th
Hennie Otto------mc---------T-7T-74T-65T-7
Anthony Wall76thmcmcT-65T-40mcmcwd55th10th
Graeme Storm---------mcT-21WonT-21T-13T-11T-11
Richard GreenT-40mcT-2---T-7mc4thT-6T-32T-11
Nicolas Colsaerts---T-23T-53mcT-54---------mcT-11
Peter Lawrie---T-46mcT-68T-40T-42T-26T-21T-42T-21
Jamie DonaldsonT-32mc------mc---T-21T-60mcT-21
Gregory HavretmcmcT-58T-4mcT-15T-53mcmcT-21
Anders HansenT-3T-57T-40T-86thmcmcT-4T-26T-30
Matteo Manassero------------------------T-26T-30
Colin MontgomerieT-23---T-48T-17---T-32ndT-13mcT-30
Alej. Canizares---------------mcT-30T-13T-2T-47
Miguel A. Jimenez---T-23T-8T-55mcmcT-66T-25Wonmc
Francesco Molinari---------T-26T-21mcT-13T-25T-2mc
Danny Willett------------------T-13T-105thmc
Peter Hanson------T-40T-55T-54---T-42T-4T-6mc
Raphael JacquelinT-40T-12dqmcmcT-42T-53T-50T-18mc
Alvaro Quiros------------------T-64T-42T-32mc
Fabrizio Zanotti------------------mcmcT-48mc
Jean-Franc. Remesy---mcWonWonT-40mc---mcT-51mc
Raf. Cabrera-Bello---------------mc---mcT-69mc
Pablo Larrazabal------------------WonT-31mcmc
Darren Clarke------------------mcT-31mcmc
Philip GoldingT-66WonmcT-13mcmcmcT-67mcmc
Lee Westwood------------T-29T-33T-52ndT-18---
Ian PoulterT-55T-30T-14---T-39thT-303rdT-18---
Graeme McDowell---T-18T-4---mcmcT-13mc------
Justin Rose---T-3T-72---------------------
Sports Network Selections

Pick to Win - Lee Westwood
Darkhorse - Mikko Ilonen
Last Week's Pick to Win (Gonzalo Fernandez z-Castano) - Missed the cut
Last Week's Darkhorse (Paul McGinley) - Finished tied for 54th
This week, the European Tour travels to France for the 96th edition of France's national championship, the Alstom Open de France, the oldest Open Championship in Continental Europe. The tournament started in 1906, but was not played from 1915-19 due to World War I and from 1940-45 due to World War II. The site of this week's tournament, Le Golf National, will be the host for the 2018 Ryder Cup.

Four of the top 15 players in the world are in the field - Lee Westwood (3), Justin Rose (9), Graeme McDowell (11) and 2009 champion Martin Kaymer (14). Westwood finished tied for 10th at the U.S. Open in his last event. He has finished in the top 10 in the last three major championships. Westwood won his last event played in Europe at the Nordea Masters in Sweden in early June. He has made 20 straight cuts on the European and PGA Tours, and his last missed cut was the 2011 British Open.

Rose has made the cut in all 14 events he has played between the European and PGA Tours this season, including a win at the WGC-Cadillac Championship. He has finished in the top 10 in his only two events played in Europe this year. Rose finished tied for second in his last event in Europe at the BMW PGA Championship in May.

McDowell finished tied for 16th last week in his home country at the Irish Open, following a tie for second at the U.S. Open. Kaymer has finished in the top 10 in four of his five appearances at this event, including a win in 2009.

The French will be well represented this week, as Victor Dubuisson, Raphael Jacquelin, Gregory Havret, Gregory Bourdy, defending champion Thomas Levet, Jean-Francois Lucquin and 2004-05 champion Jean-Francois Remesy are scheduled to compete.

Le Golf National will be hosting for the 20th time and 12th time in the last 13 seasons. The championship itself is steeped in history, dating back to the first winner, Arnaud Massy in 1906, to players such as James Braid, Henry Cotton, Walter Hagen, Bobby Locke, Byron Nelson, Greg Norman, J.H. Taylor, Roberto de Vicenzo, Seve Ballesteros, Sandy Lyle, Nick Faldo, Bernhard Langer, Retief Goosen, Sam Torrance, Colin Montgomerie and Jose Maria Olazabal.

Last year, Levet won his home tournament by one stroke over Mark Foster and Thorbjorn Olesen. Levet finished at 7-under-par 277 for his sixth European Tour victory. Only 10 players finished the tournament under par. Levet became the first Frenchman since Remesy in 2005 to win this event.

In 2010, Miguel Angel Jimenez shook off a closing double-bogey in regulation to win a three-way playoff, capturing his 17th title on the European Tour. Jimenez rolled in a 12-foot par putt to knock off fellow Spaniard Alejandro Canizares and Italy's Francesco Molinari on the first playoff hole. Jimenez became the oldest winner in tournament history at 46 years and 180 days old.

In 2009, Kaymer defeated Westwood in a playoff, rolling in a lengthy par putt on the first extra hole to claim the victory. Kaymer matched the course record with a 62 in the opening round and finished the event at 13-under-par 271 with Westwood. The German holed a 30-footer for par on the 18th green to win the playoff. Westwood knocked his approach shot into the water in the playoff, ending his chances.

In 2008, Pablo Larrazabal closed with a four-under 67 in the final round to claim his first European Tour win, ending a spectacular and surprising week at Le Golf National that saw the Spaniard hold at least a share of the lead after all four rounds. He finished at 15-under-par 269 for a 4-shot victory over Colin Montgomerie. Larrazabal became the first qualifier to win this tournament.

England's Graeme Storm fired a 5-under 66 in the final round in 2007 to come from behind and win his first title on the European Tour. Storm posted a bogey-free final round, including four pars on the final holes, a tough stretch at Le Golf National. He finished at 7-under-par 277 and won by a single stroke over third-round leader Soren Hansen.

In 2005, Remesy double-bogeyed the first playoff hole, but it was good enough to defeat fellow countryman Jean Van de Velde and repeat as the winner. Remesy became the first repeat winner of this tournament since Nick Faldo in 1988-89. In 2004, Remesy became the first French champion of this event since Jean Garaialde in 1969.

In 2003, Philip Golding matched the feat of Malcolm Mackenzie from 2002 as each won their first ever title at this tournament. Mackenzie claimed his first European Tour title in his 509th event, which was the most events played by a player before his first win in tour history.

Ballesteros is a four-time winner, while Langer, a winner in 1984, has been runner-up five times. Two of Langer's runner-up finishes were losses in playoffs. Ballesteros was the youngest champion in event history when he won in 1977 at 20 years and 29 days old. Aubrey Boomer won five times, the most in tournament history (1921-22, 26, 29, 31). Marcel Dallemagne won three consecutive times (1936-38). Torrance was the last wire-to-wire winner when he captured the title in 1998.

The European Tour moves to Scotland next week for the final tune-up before the British Open Championship, the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open, where Luke Donald captured the 2011 title.

07/03 15:13:42 ET

As of July 3, 2012, at 03:13 PM ET