Tramore's Robin Dawson saw his hopes of winning a European Tour card evaporate in the fifth round but declared himself "proud" to have won Challenge Tour status in his first appearance at the Final Stage of the gruelling European Tour Qualifying School in Spain.
The 22-year old began the day tied for 70th in the race to finish among the top 25 and ties at Lumine Golf Club near Tarragona.
But while things didn't go his way on the Lakes Course and he signed for a three-over 74 to slip to tied 76th on three-over — 12 strokes outside the top 25 who will win cards today — knows he's at least guaranteed a full season on the Challenge Tour.
"I'm pleased to get this far and have earned a full category for the Challenge Tour and some European Tour status,” said Dawson who is playing in just his fourth tournament as a professional.
Gavin Moynihan and Cormac Sharvin are still in the race for European Tour cards, but with bad weather forecast for the sixth and final day, they are taking nothing for granted despite carding a pair of six-under 66's yesterday.
Moynihan, 24, is tied for 15th on 16-under and one stroke inside the crucial top 25 and ties with Sharvin three shots further back in tied 32nd.
"My back still a bit stiff on the longer shots," said Moynihan, who came through on the final day to earn his card on his Q-School debut last year. "Weather is horrific for tomorrow so will see how we go."
Former Walker Cup teammate Sharvin was tied 132nd on one-over par after two rounds.
But after playing his last 54-holes in 14-under thanks to rounds of 66, 68 and 66, he's just two shots outside the magic number and planning to keep the blinkers on.
"Nothing changes," said Sharvin, who is tied for 32nd on 13-under after closing with a birdie on the Lakes Course. "I played very nicely again today. Very solid.”
American Kurt Kitayama, France's Romain Langasque and South Africa's Zander Lombard lead by a shot on 21-under par with Scotland’s Marc Warren one of the well-known names chasing.
A five-under 66 left him a shot outside the top 25 but Dane Anders Hansen, the oldest player in the Final Stage field at 48, is tied for 15th with Moynihan after a six-under-par 65.