1988 European Tour

The 1988 European Tour was the 17th official season of golf tournaments known as the PGA European Tour. It marked the beginning of a long association for the tour with Swedish car maker Volvo, who became the tour's first official title sponsor.[1][2]

1988 European Tour season
Duration10 March 1988 (1988-03-10) – 18 December 1988 (1988-12-18)
Number of official events29
Most wins5 – Seve Ballesteros
Order of MeritSeve Ballesteros
Golfer of the YearSeve Ballesteros
Sir Henry Cotton rookie of the yearColin Montgomerie

The Order of Merit was won by Spain's Seve Ballesteros.


The table below shows the 1988 European Tour schedule which was made up of 29 tournaments counting for the Order of Merit, and several non-counting "Approved Special Events".[3] There were several changes from the previous season, with the addition of the Open de Baleares, the Biarritz Open, the English Open and the Volvo Masters; the return of the Barcelona Open, which had been cancelled due to bad weather in 1987; and the loss of the Lawrence Batley International.[1][4] The Moroccan Open, originally scheduled to open the season, was initially postponed until October but ultimately cancelled.[5]

Dates Tournament Host country Winner[a] OWGR
10–13 Mar Mallorca Open de Baleares Spain   Seve Ballesteros (35) 20 New tournament
17–20 Mar Torras Hostench Barcelona Open Spain   David Whelan (1) 18
31 Mar – 3 Apr AGF Biarritz Open France   David Llewellyn (1) 16 New tournament
7–10 Apr Masters Tournament United States   Sandy Lyle (14) 100 Major championship; non-tour event[a]
14–17 Apr Cannes Open France   Mark McNulty (7) 20
21–24 Apr Cepsa Madrid Open Spain   Derrick Cooper (1) 22
28 Apr – 1 May Portuguese Open Portugal   Mike Harwood (1) 18
5–8 May Epson Grand Prix of Europe Wales   Bernhard Langer (19) 40
12–15 May Peugeot Spanish Open Spain   Mark James (9) 38
19–22 May Lancia Italian Open Italy   Greg Norman (12) 24
27–30 May Volvo PGA Championship England   Ian Woosnam (9) 44
2–5 Jun Dunhill British Masters England   Sandy Lyle (15) 42
9–12 Jun Wang Four Stars National Pro-Celebrity England   Rodger Davis (3) 20
16–19 Jun U.S. Open United States   Curtis Strange (n/a) 100 Major championship; non-tour event[a]
16–19 Jun Volvo Belgian Open Belgium   José María Olazábal (3) 16
23–26 Jun Peugeot Open de France France   Nick Faldo (14) 40
29 Jun – 2 Jul Monte Carlo Open Monaco   José Rivero (3) 24
6–9 Jul Bell's Scottish Open Scotland   Barry Lane (1) 44
14–17 Jul The Open Championship England   Seve Ballesteros (36) 100 Major championship
21–24 Jul KLM Dutch Open Netherlands   Mark Mouland (2) 34
28–31 Jul Scandinavian Enterprise Open Sweden   Seve Ballesteros (37) 34
4–7 Aug Benson and Hedges International Open England   Peter Baker (1) 38
11–14 Aug PGA Championship United States   Jeff Sluman (n/a) 100 Major championship; non-tour event[a]
11–14 Aug PLM Open Sweden   Frank Nobilo (1) 16
18–21 Aug Carroll's Irish Open Republic of Ireland   Ian Woosnam (10) 42
25–28 Aug German Open West Germany   Seve Ballesteros (38) 38
1–4 Sep Ebel European Masters Swiss Open Switzerland   Chris Moody (1) 44
8–11 Sep Panasonic European Open England   Ian Woosnam (11) 42
15–18 Sep Lancome Trophy France   Seve Ballesteros (39) 46
22–25 Sep German Masters West Germany   José María Olazábal (4) 44
29 Sep – 2 Oct English Open England   Howard Clark (11) 16 New tournament
6–10 Oct Suntory World Match Play England   Sandy Lyle (n/a) 32 Approved Special Event
3–6 Mar
6–9 Oct
Moroccan Open Morocco Cancelled
13–16 Oct Dunhill Cup Scotland   England n/a Approved Special Event; team event
17–18 Oct Equity & Law Challenge England   Ronan Rafferty (n/a) Approved Special Event
20–23 Oct BNP Jersey Open Jersey   Des Smyth (6) 16
24–27 Oct UAP European Under-25s Championship France   Jean van de Velde (n/a) n/a Approved Special Event
27–30 Oct Volvo Masters Spain   Nick Faldo (15) 44 New tournament
3–6 Nov Europcar Cup France   Sweden n/a Approved Special Event; team event
10–13 Nov Benson & Hedges Trophy Spain   Mark McNulty &   Marie-Laure Taya n/a Approved Special Event; mixed pairs event
8–11 Dec World Cup Australia   United States n/a Approved Special Event; team event
World Cup International Trophy   Ben Crenshaw (n/a) n/a Approved Special Event; individual prize
15–18 Dec Kirin Cup United States   United States n/a Approved Special Event; team event
  1. ^ a b c d The numbers in parentheses after the winners' names show the number of official career wins they had on the European Tour up to and including that event. Totals are only shown for members of the European Tour and are inclusive of the three United States-based major championships since, although not official tour events at the time, they have been recognised as such retrospecively. Victories in "Approved Special Events" are not recognised as official tour wins.

Order of MeritEdit

The PGA European Tour's money list was known as the "Volvo Order of Merit". It was based on prize money earned during the season and calculated in Pound sterling.[2]

Position Player Country Prize money (£)
1 Seve Ballesteros   Spain 451,560
2 Nick Faldo   England 347,971
3 José María Olazábal   Spain 285,964
4 Ian Woosnam   Wales 234,991
5 Sandy Lyle   Scotland 186,018
6 Mark McNulty   Zimbabwe 180,992
7 Des Smyth   Ireland 171,951
8 Mark James   England 152,900
9 Ronan Rafferty   Northern Ireland 132,395
10 José Rivero   Spain 131,079


Award Winner Country
European Tour Golfer of the Year Seve Ballesteros   Spain
Sir Henry Cotton Rookie of the Year Colin Montgomerie   Scotland

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b Davies, David (1 December 1987). "Rich pickings for Europe's Volvo drivers". The Guardian. London, England. Retrieved 26 May 2020.
  2. ^ a b "Tour History". PGA European Tour. Retrieved 21 June 2013.
  3. ^ Platts, Mitchell (1 December 1987). "Shooting for £10m in the rosy tour garden of Europe". The Times. p. 42. Retrieved 26 May 2020 – via The Times Digital Archive.
  4. ^ "At last! English get their own Open". Irish Independent. 26 January 1988. p. 15. Retrieved 25 May 2020 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  5. ^ "Sport in brief | Open closed". The Times. 12 September 1988. p. 38. Retrieved 26 May 2020 – via The Times Digital Archive.
  6. ^ "Events | European Tour | 1988". Official World Golf Ranking. Retrieved 26 April 2020.

External linksEdit