Being a European Tour player is a dream for many, but what is it really like? 2006 BMW PGA Championship winner David Howell let’s us grill him on the best and worst portions of the career in the greatest game on earth.
What’s the best part of being a Tour Pro?
“Playing the game I love for a living. It never feels like I go to work! My passion is my job and I guess ultimately that’s the best thing about being a professional golfer.”
Worst part of of being a Tour Pro?
“Being away from home as much as I am as a family man is not easy on anyone, so everyone has to make a few sacrifices along the way. So I guess ultimately you want a few more tournaments on your doorstep. But that’s not the way it is.”
What’s your best shot?
“I’d say my wedge play is my strongest point. Most people say I’m a great putter – which I am – let’s say maybe my wedge play or mid-range putting I can hold my own at compared to most people.”
What’s your worst shot?
“…I don’t really want to say! Because it puts negative thoughts in my mind! I tell you what though, I’m not the best at fairway bunker shots. Some guys have a real art to playing fairway bunker shots. I’m getting better at them – I worked something out the other day – but if I’ve got a weak point they’re certainly not my strength.”
Who’s the best playing partner?
“Someone that I always played well with when he was on tour was Barry Lane – nice guy – always enjoyed playing with Barry. Often I’d be in the mid-60s in his company! But unfortunately he’s moved onto the seniors Tour now, so my scoring average has gone up!”
Worst playing partner?
“Over the recent years whenever I’ve play with my best pal on Tour – Mark Foster – I’ve performed particularly poorly! So strangely my best friend is often not my best playing partner.”
Best course on Tour?
“Favourite course that has been on our schedule was Loch Lomond. Get that on a sunny day – if you can find one – and it’s a thing of beauty.”
Worst rule in golf?
“I would say your ball moving on the green – they have changed this rule a little bit – if the wind moves it now it’s not a penalty but you mark your ball, then you put it back down. Put your putter behind and the ball just rolls off a little ridge on the green and that a penalty. That is very harsh indeed, so I’d say that’s the worst rule in golf.”
Best hair on Tour?
“Definitely not me! I wish I had more! Certainly the fullest head of hair is Robert Rock. You know when someone like their own hair when they don’t wear a cap. Robert you never see in a cap.”
Worst hair on Tour?
“My wife would probably say me.”
Most generous player on Tour?
“Darren Clarke, over the years – 20 years on Tour – I’ve never seen anyone spend it so generously as Darren.”
Who’s the tightest on Tour?
“I’m not to answer that! I’ll take the fifth (amendment) on that one.”
Funniest player on Tour?
“Probably Richard Finch. Great at doing impressions, in fact you never really hear his normal voice, so your never sure who he’s gonna be. He’s always keeping people amused.”
Least funny player on Tour?
“I’m sorry I’m going to welch on this one as well! We’ll just sticky with Finchy being the funniest.”
Worst career performance?
“The tournament that jumps to mind was Malaysia – probably 2009 – playing terrible. Hot, humid. I played with two guys who were leading on 12-under par after two rounds and I was on about 13-over. That was a low point in my career.”
Best career performance?
“Definitely winning the PGA Championship in 2006. Proudest moment in my career to date and I hope to recreate those feelings this year.”