The Ladies European Tour season ended with a banner day for Swedish golf as veteran Caroline Hedwall won for the first time in four years and three Swedes topped the season-long Race to Costa del Sol: 1) Linn Grant 2) Maja Stark 3) Johanna Gustavvson.
Hedwall defeated Switzerland's Morgane Metraux with a birdie on the fourth playoff hole at the Andalucía Costa del Sol Open de España. Grant closed with a 65 to finish third and top the year-long rankings.
"I am just very relieved, very happy," said Grant. "This is huge for Swedish golf, having Johanna as well at No. 3 on the rankings. I've had Carro [Hedwall] as a role model myself to just see her out there winning and getting that moment for herself is awesome as well."
Hedwall, 33, posted a bogey-free 67 on Sunday to finish at 18 under. Metraux, who won earlier this season at the Ladies Italian Open, recently clinched her LPGA card for the 2023 season with a share of fourth at the Pelican Women's Championship.
"I wasn't sure I still had it in me," said Hedwall. "It's so nice to get it together and get this win. It has been a roller coaster to be honest. I had injury in 2014 that was really tough on me, and I had a hard turn on my self-confidence. That win in 2018 meant a lot to me.
"It was tough during COVID-19. I didn't want to travel as much but now it's more or less back to normal and it feels great. My game is coming together really nicely, and it was awesome to finish with that."
A seven-time winner on the LET, Hedwall said making the 2023 Solheim Cup team in Spain will be a goal for next season. She has made four previous Solheim Cup appearances.
Grant won four times on the LET in 2022, including the history-making Scandinavian Mixed, in which she beat the men on the DP World Tour. Stark won three times on the LET this season, including the ISPS Handa World Invitational, a co-sanctioned event with the LPGA that gave her immediate tour status. Stark, who like Hedwall played collegiately at Oklahoma State, finished out the season on the LPGA, placing 52nd on the Race to CME Globe points list.
Grant earned LPGA status last year at Q-Series but was unable to compete on U.S. soil this season due to her vaccination status. The former ASU star still managed to compete in LPGA events around the globe, however, finishing 56th on the CME rankings. In six LPGA starts this season, Grant carded four top-eight finishes and a T-19 at the AIG Women's British Open.
She will have full LPGA status for 2023.
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Story originally appeared on GolfWeek