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Murcia Golf Course Designer: José María Olazábal

Designed the Golf Course at: Corvera Golf & Country Club.

José María Olazábal (nickname: Chema) was born on 5 February 1966 in Hondarribia, a town in the Basque Country region of Spain. He burst onto the golf scene as a junior, winning The (British) Amateur Championship aged eighteen. Then, in his rookie professional season of 1986, he finished second on the European Tour Order of Merit aged just twenty. In his first nine seasons, he finished in the top 10 every year except two, including another second place in 1989, and he was a regular member of the top ten of the Official World Golf Rankings (over 300 weeks). Had Olazábal beaten Ian Woosnam at The Masters in 1991 (he finished second) he would have become the World number one. He was unable to play in 1996 due to a foot injury but he recovered and recorded further top ten placings in the Order of Merit in 1997, 1999 and 2000. He has more than twenty career titles on this tour.

Both of Olazábal's majors have come in the United States, namely The Masters in 1994 and 1999. These wins make him the only winner of The Amateur Championship since World War II to have gone on to win a professional major. He has been highly placed in The Masters on a number of other occasions. Olazábal shares the record for the lowest round in the PGA Championship (63), which he accomplished in the third round at Valhalla Golf Club in 2000.

In 2001 Olazábal began to play on the PGA Tour, while also retaining his membership of the European Tour. He had a solid year on the PGA Tour in 2002, when he won nearly two million dollars and came twenty-fourth on the money list, but has not duplicated the success he enjoyed in Europe in the 1980s and 1990s. He has six career PGA Tour titles, five of them won before he became a full member of the Tour. In 2006 he made a return to the top fifteen of the world rankings.

Olazábal was a member of the European Ryder Cup team in 1987, 1989, 1991, 1993, 1997, 1999 and 2006. He had a famous partnership with fellow Spaniard Seve Ballesteros and formed a similarly successful partnership with Sergio García in 2006.

In 2012 he captained Europe's Ryder Cup team to a narrow victory over the USA. A win which seemed improbable at the start of the final day's play with the Europeans trailing 10–6. The comeback to win 14½–13½ was, according to Olazábal, inspired by his late friend Seve Ballesteros.

Olazábal also holds the world record distance for a completed putt. During the 1999 European Ryder Cup team's Concorde flight to the United States, he holed a putt which travelled the full length of the cabin. The ball was in motion for 26.17s, during which time the Concorde, at 1,270mph, travelled 9.232 miles, beating U.S. golfer Brad Faxon's previous record of 8.5 miles, set in 1997.

Olazábal´s activity off of the golf course is in designing golf courses which he has been heavily involved in for several years, having designed more than 10 golf courses in Spain, including the Real Club de Golf de Sevilla, Costa Ballena in Cádiz and la Sella in Alicante.

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