Caddy banned "indefinitely" after bizarre club incident
A European Tour caddy has been banned ‘indefinitely’ over a bizarre incident that led to the disqualification of Spain’s Jose Manuel Lara after the first round of the BMW International Open in Germany.
Argentinean born Matias Vinson had sought to hide a 15 th club in Lara’s bag in bushes at the second hole of the Gut Larcenhof course in Pulheim.
Lara thought the caddy was heading into bushes as a ‘call of nature’ but his playing partners, Damien McGrane of Ireland and Sweden’s Peter Hedblom became suspicious.
Vinson realising the errors of his way then advised Lara he had 15 clubs in the bag.
It meant a two-stroke penalty to Lara for each of the two holes he played with a maximum of a four stroke penalty in the Spaniard’s eventual round of 73.
However McGrane then brought the matter to the notice of Chief Referee, John Paramor straight after the trio completed their rounds.
Paramor’s initial comment was: “It is so bizarre I will have to go away to think about it.”
Paramor returned less than 30 minutes later to advise Lara he was disqualified from the Euro 2m tournament given the player is responsible for a caddies action.
“Jose Manuel’s caddy noticed he had a 15th club and on the econd hole he attempted to lose it in a thick bush,” said Paramor.
"His playing partners went and asked the chap: 'What are you doing?' and he sort of fumbled out an answer saying 'I've got this wrong - I've done something bad. I wish it hadn't happened, etc etc'.
"It was clear the club was out of the bag and in the bush at the time. He admitted it straight away and regretted his action.
"A ruling was sought over what was the penalty for carrying an extra club and he was given two shots for the first hole and two for the second."
Vinson, like Lara had been caught in a traffic jam coming to the course and actually alighted from the car he was in to jog the three kilometres of so to the course.
Lara arrived at the course from his Dusseldorf hotel and with just round an hour before his tee off.
In his haste, Vinson missed noticing the 15 th club in Lara’s bag.
“Hopefully we won't have too many more of those," added Paramo
“We interviewed the player and are perfectly satisfied that he had no knowledge of what was going on.
"It was clearly the caddie doing what he felt at the time was the right thing, but was clearly the wrong thing. He's kind of been asked not to come back and that's how the matter has been resolved."
And Martin Kaymer found himself in a quandary ahead of his second round tee off after someone stole his golf shoes from the storage area at Gut Lacenhof.
“It’s not the shoes I am concerned about but the specially made inserts I had in the shoes,” said Kaymer who shot a first round 71.
“I’ve managed to get another pair of shoes but will have to wait to get home tonight to fit another pair of inserts.”
The European Tour later released a statement saying:
"Jose Manuel Lara has been disqualified from the 2012 BMW International Open following the actions of his caddie, Mathias Vinson, during the first round on Friday.
The penalty of disqualification was imposed under Ruler 33-7 with Paramor and TournamentDirector, David Williams believing a serious attempt to circumvent the Ruleswas made by the caddie
"The player is responsible for any breach of the Rules by his caddie, leaving the European Tour's Rules Committee no option but to disqualify Jose Manuel.
"Following an interview with Jose Manuel Lara, it was established that he had NO proior knowledge of the 15th club in his bag, or the attempt to dispoe of the 15th club.
"Mathias Vinson has been banned from the European Tour indefinitely."
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