Qualification for The Open Championship would be a bonus rather than a priority for Eddie Pepperell as he begins a key run of tournaments this week.
Oxfordshire’s top golfer, pictured, tees off in the Irish Open on Thursday, refreshed after a fortnight’s break from competition.
On top of the all-important prize money, which determines the European Tour rankings, there is an added incentive at Fota Island – three spots up for The Open at Hoylake next month.
To claim a place, Abingdon’s Pepperell would have to finish in the top ten and be one of the three highest finishers who have not qualified via other routes.
It is the same scenario at the French and Scottish Opens, but Pepperell is keen to avoid being distracted by the prospect of making his Open debut.
The 23-year-old, whose maiden major appearance came at the US Open last year, said: “It’s not a priority.
“I wouldn’t really care if I wasn’t playing in it, but it would be great to make it.
“My form is good and if I got in it would be great because it’s The Open.
“I think getting into the majors are a bonus at this stage.
“The first three years on tour in everyone’s career is all about learning and constructing your game.
“I’m in the middle of that period and I can feel my game getting better.”
Pepperell is hoping he can continue a fine run of results which has turned his season around.
After missing seven of his first nine cuts, the Frilford Heath golfer has reached the weekend in his last four events to climb the rankings.
As well as trips to Ireland, France and Scotland in the coming weeks, the important run also includes the BMW International Open in Germany.
Another handful of strong finishes would go a long way to securing Pepperell’s place on the European Tour for 2015, but despite the slow start he always had faith the upturn in results would come.
“I was expecting myself to do that,” he said.
“It certainly makes me feel happier in myself.
“I have just got to keep doing what I’m doing and not putting any extra pressure on myself.
“I know the courses and they suit me.”
12:00am Sunday 7th February 2016
OXFORD United season ticket holders will be able to buy tickets for the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy final at Wembley as of tomorrow.
3:00pm Saturday 6th February 2016
DEFENDER Canice Carroll has signed a professional contract with Oxford United.
12:40pm Saturday 6th February 2016
OXFORD United will announce full details at 1pm tomorrow on tickets for the Johnstone's Paint Trophy final at Wembley.
10:19am Saturday 6th February 2016
OXFORD United's Sky Bet League Two game at Exeter City has been called off due to a waterlogged pitch.
10:00am Saturday 6th February 2016
SAM Slocombe is set to take over between the sticks as Oxford United make the trip to Exeter City in Sky Bet League Two this afternoon (3).
9:30am Saturday 6th February 2016
LIAM Sercombe expects an emotional return to Exeter City today but insists he is focused on one thing – an Oxford United victory.
8:30am Saturday 6th February 2016
Reece Chamdal, the 15th ranked English cadet, dominated the Oxford & District League’s junior tournament at Kidlington Forum.
8:30am Saturday 6th February 2016
Forum A suffered a shock defeat when losing 8-2 to Bicester A in Division 1 of the Oxford & District League.
8:20am Saturday 6th February 2016
Oxford City Stars and MK Thunder will compete for the John Cartwright Trophy in their English League South Division 1 match at Oxpens tomorrow.
7:50am Saturday 6th February 2016
CHRIS Webb came out on top in the Mason’s match at Aristotle Lane.