She is the first to admit that she is not an early riser and when her alarm went off this morning at 5 a.m. ET, Carlota Ciganda would normally want to press snooze. But today was different.
“I’m Spanish, so Spanish people like to sleep in and start the day a little later than a 7:38 tee time,” said Ciganda. “Just have to do what you have to do. I was pretty awake today. Had a nice dinner, slept good and was ready to go.”
Getting up early didn’t hurt at all in the 2nd Round of the LPGA Drive On Championship in Ocala, Florida, as the 30-year-old from Arizona State University hit 16 greens en route to a bogey-free, 7-under 65.
To add the relaxed state of play for Ciganda, she was paired with Dame Laura Davies. She not only looks up to the four-time major champion and 20-time winner as a professional, but admires Davies’ creativity.
“I love playing with her. Her talent is unbelievable, like everything she does with her different shots. Lots of imagination,” Ciganda said. “I think she can hit shots no one out here can hit, so I have a lot of respect and I think she’s just so good for the Tour. She shot 3-under, no bogeys. It’s just pure talent.”
MORE ON CARLOTA CIGANDA FROM WIKIPEDIA COMMONS
Ciganda turned professional in May 2011 making her debut the following month at the Tenerife Ladies Match Play, an unofficial event on the LET schedule, where she finished second to Becky Brewerton. She competed on the Ladies European Tour Access Series that season, winning the Murcia Ladies Open. In the LPGA Final Qualifying Tournament in December 2011 she finished tied 34th, earning Priority List Category 20 for the 2012 LPGA Tour season and went on to finish third at the LET Final Qualifying School tournament later that month to earn full playing rights for the 2012 Ladies European Tour season.
In her first full season on the 2012 Ladies European Tour, Ciganda won the ISPS Handa Order of Merit and was also named Players’ Player of the Year, as voted for by the LET members. She played in 19 tournaments, with two victories at the Deloitte Ladies Open and the China Suzhou Taihu Open and had ten additional top-10s finishes. Her efforts won her the LET Rookie of the Year award and she ended the season ranked second on the European Solheim Cup points list with total earnings of €251,289.95.
Ciganda was the ladies’ winner of the 2019 AON Risk Reward Challenge, collecting the $1,000,000 prize.
COURTESY LPGA COMMUNICATIONS