You are not permitted to download, save or email this image. Visit image gallery to purchase the image.
Queenstown golfer Fraser MacLachlan has earned his professional spurs.
MacLachlan, along with fellow Queenstown golfer James Anstiss have qualified for the Australasian Tour.
At the final qualifying event at the Moonah Links course in Fingal, near Melbourne, Anstiss impressed as he finished second, recording an 8-under 280, three shots behind winner Dylan Perry, of New South Wales. MacLachlan did it tougher, finishing tied for 35th, one shot ahead of the cut off mark of five over.
Anstiss had won his card last year at the qualifying event but was forced to go back after failing to get high enough on the Australasian order of merit this season.
But he was never in trouble and came home well, scoring 67 and 68 in his final two rounds.
MacLachlan, who withdrew from contention for this month’s national provincial tournament to chase his professional dream, said it had been a tough week but he had held on to win.
He was not intending to go to the qualifying events as he felt he was not playing well enough and also had too much on at his work.
"But I had nothing to lose and it was a financial decision and it was up to me to go out and have a go at it," he said.
"I thought I would go over there and it would not be the end of the world if I did not qualify."
He played at the first qualifying tournament at Sandhurst and was right on the cusp of missing out but finished tied for 14th so went into the final qualifying four round event at Moonah Links over the weekend.
He started well and had three to four shots in hand going into the final round but a busy schedule started to catch up with him.
"Of the 16 days I was over there I played 15 rounds of golf so I was getting tired and my golf was deteriorating. I played a good round in the third round and I managed to hang in there on the last round."
The qualification helps him into the state opens and he will be flying to Victoria late next month to try to qualify for the Victoria Open.
MacLachlan (27) owns a firewood business in Queenstown and would not be giving that up but said it was a good feeling to have qualified for the tour.
He had a few celebration drinks in Melbourne last night before heading home to Queenstown yesterday.
Anstiss’ second placing was a bonus for him and will have opened up more invitations to events over the coming few months.