AN IMPRESSIVE treble of results has secured Buxton’s ladies darts ace Lorraine Farlam her place at the coveted Lakeside World Professional Darts Championships.
Last week’s Romanian Open win, following on from her triumph at the BDO British Open and her runner-up spot in the England Classic, has lifted the 35-year-old beauty therapist up to number four in the world rankings – guaranteeing automatic qualification for the Lakeside showpiece in the New Year.
Mother-of-two Farlam, of Dale Road, said: “It is an amazing feeling, especially as I had written myself off a couple of months back after going to Sweden and going out in the first round. At that time, I thought I had blown it, but luckily I have managed to turn it around.
“I said at the beginning of the season I wanted to get myself into the top-five in the world, and that’s exactly what I have done.”
Farlam’s fantastic form, which saw her retain her Scottish Open title and lift the prestigious BDO Gold Cup earlier in the year, continued at last month’s British Open, held in front of an audience of over 1,400 at The Spa in Bridlington.
She defeated her pairs partner, Russian Anastasia Dobromyslova, 3-1 in the semi-final before seeing off world champion Trina Gulliver 3-0 in the final, winning the title with a stunning 135 outshot.
But it was victory at last weekend’s Romanian Open, when she beat fellow Englishwoman Jane Shearing in the final, which secured her a Lakeside berth in her own right and means she avoids having to qualify through the play-offs, as she did when she made her debut in the tournament at the start of the year.
“It is how I wanted to do it,” admits Farlam, who is only in her second season on the professional circuit.
“Last year I started halfway through the season and couldn’t get enough tournaments and ranking points to qualify outright for the Lakeside.
“But to me it just feels like it is worth doing, spending all of the time and effort travelling to all these places. It feels to me it is worth all of the effort, and if you want something badly enough it is achievable.”
Darts is becoming something of a family affair for Farlam - her boyfriend is professional darts player Dean Winstanley.
And now even her daughter Josie Paterson, 15, who attends St Thomas More School, is beginning to make a name for herself in the sport, after winning the England Classic’s youth girls competition, her maiden tournament victory.
“I am extremely proud of her,” Farlam added. “She took to that stage in front of a large room of people and played brilliantly.
“It is definitely in her blood and she wants to continue with it.”
England international Farlam, who recently switched her county allegiance from Cheshire to Yorkshire, is next expected to be in action at the forthcoming Turkish Open.