Ben Lanting, PGA, Assistant Professional at Bear Creek Golf Club, won the West Chapter Championship held at Aspen Glen Club on October 5-6. Lanting, who was elected to membership in June this year, competed against nine-time winner of the event, Doug Rohrbaugh, PGA, Teaching Professional at The Snowmass Club.
This annual Championship is the premier event of the West Chapter and the Section alike. Held at the picturesque Aspen Glen Club, it attracts some of the best Professionals in the state. This year was no different as the first round had several players in contention.
When asked about the event, Lanting replied, “This event is one of my favorites. Aspen Glen is one of the most beautiful courses I have ever played, and the conditions of the course were absolutely perfect. I was excited to come up and play, partly because my fiancé Aimee was coming with me to caddie! As far as golf goes, we had a lot of fun and I was fortunate enough to hit solid shots and roll in some putts.”
Lanting was in the lead after the first round, with a 3-under-par 69. Several players were right behind him, including 2020 Section Championship Winner, Geoff Keffer, PGA, Assistant Professional at Lakewood Country Club, and 2020 Assistant Champion, Caine Fitzgerald, PGA, Assistant Professional at Meadow Hills Golf Course. Keffer and Fitzgerald were tied for second at 2-under-par 70. Rohrbaugh was at even par with a 72.
In the final round, Lanting increased his lead, making four birdies in the first six holes. He carded a 4-under-par round to maintain first place, with an overall score of 7-under-par. Rohrbaugh finished three strokes behind Lanting, second overall, with a 4-under-par, which earned him first in the Senior Division.
Commenting on the final round, Lanting recalls, “It’s always fun, and obviously the goal, to be leading going into the last round. Seeing a bunch of Players of the Year right behind me, I knew I had to play well again on Tuesday. We stuck to the game plan (which was to rely on my caddie) and fired another solid round. The nerves were definitely there, but it was exciting to be able to channel them into focus. The weather and course conditions were perfect once again, and I’m always so grateful to be playing the game I love. Always an honor to win in these talented fields.”
Rohrbaugh’s key to success at the West Chapter Championship was his putting. He states, “Day one, I hit it very average, but my putting kept me in it. Day two, I got off to a hot start, and was five under through seven holes. When I made bogey on #9, it took the wind out of my sails. On the back, I made nine straight pars. However, I am very happy with the finish, considering how far behind I was after round one. Congratulations to Ben! He played very solid and consistent. Thanks also to Aspen Glen and their staff; the golf course was in absolutely amazing condition.”
Lanting also expresses his gratitude. “I’m very grateful for my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, Aimee and the rest of my family, Bear Creek Golf Club, the Colorado PGA Staff and the staff at Aspen Glen for their support and a memorable week. It was well worth the 80% winnings fee that my caddie charged.”
West Chapter President, Jeff Boyer, PGA, General Manager at Eagle Ranch Golf Club commented, “It was a great success. I think we had about 75 players, which is the largest turnout I can remember in my 25 years here. The weather and course conditions were phenomenal as was the performance of our champion, Ben Lanting. I would like to thank the Aspen Glen Club and host PGA Professional Dave Thompson for graciously hosting this event for the last several years. We are so lucky to be able to hold our championship at such an amazing facility. I would also like to thank Tom Bauerle of Colorado Golf & Turf and David Walker of True Temper Shafts for their sponsorship.”
To see the full results of the West Chapter Championship, click here.