A PEEBLES golfer scooped £16,000 in prize-money at the weekend after a career-best result on the professional circuit.

Craig Howie, 25, finished joint-fourth at the Austrian Open on Sunday (July 12).

He told the Peeblesshire News: “It’s been my biggest result so far - it’s only my second European Tour event.”

Howie, who usually competes on the Challenge Tour, scored -10 at the Diamond Country Club near Vienna. The event was won by his fellow Scotsman Marc Warren.

Howie revealed he was pleasantly surprised by his achievement because he had felt a little rusty due to lockdown.

“I had really low expectations having not played golf for three months,” said the Peebles Golf Club member.

Halfway through his second round, however, Howie enjoyed a share of the lead - and he ultimately carded scores of -6, -3, +2 and -3.

The result saw him secure joint-fourth place, alongside Connor Syme (Scotland), Darius Van Driel (Netherlands) and Sebastian Garcia Rodriguez (Spain). All four picked up cheques for €17,782.26.

Howie said: “It wasn’t my best ball-striking game, but I managed my game quite well.

“I played quite conservatively and every time I did play a poor shot it was away from trouble and quite safe.

“So that minimised my errors and kept a lot of bogies off my scorecard.

“Managing my game was the key reason I played quite well, rather than playing flat-out amazing golf.”

Nevertheless, Howie has drawn strength from his most recent showing, which followed on from encouraging rounds earlier in 2020.

“The results I’ve had this year and at the start of this week tell me my game is good enough and I can compete on the Challenge Tour and the European Tour, so I’m full of belief,” Howie said.

The former Peebles High School pupil’s next event is the Euram Bank Open, also in Austria, which starts on Wednesday, July 15.