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billy horschel wins

‘Tough times’ to more titles: Billy Horschel clutches Corales crown

Billy Horschel was in the winner’s circle on the PGA Tour again in the Dominican Republic and NCG’s Matt Chivers was there to speak to him afterwards…

 

Billy Horschel was on the phone arranging his flight from the Caribbean, but he was already on cloud nine having won again on the PGA Tour.

At the precise moment when no player could surpass his lead at the top of the Corales Puntacana Championship leaderboard, Horschel started a video call with his family a few feet from where I was sat in the dark, cubed media tent.

“How far away is that?” one of his children was heard saying about the Dominican Republic as they joyfully celebrated via the virtual communication which we have all become accustomed to in recent years.

He wanted to be in the air a little after 6 pm. His media duties didn’t finish until about 5.30 pm, but fortunately, Puntacana airport is just an eight-minute drive from Corales Golf Course.

As a Zurich ambassador, he needed to head towards Louisiana for a photoshoot to begin the week of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans where he’ll play with Tyson Alexander in a unique pairs format that the PGA Tour holds once a year.

Horschel is no stranger to the winner’s circle on the US circuit. He has won eight times now, but winning couldn’t have looked further away in June 2023 when the popular American became tearful after posting an 84 at the Memorial Tournament as defending champion.

Between Horschel removing his white ceremonial winner’s jacket, tossing it on the chair next to me and heading for the tarmac, NCG squeezed in a question about what has changed since the day that brought him to his knees at Muirfield Village.

“At that point, I didn’t know where the golf ball was going. I was spending hours and hours grinding at the game and I wasn’t getting what I wanted out of it. I wasn’t seeing the results, any kind of results that I wanted,” he said.

“And then you go to a course like that where I was defending champion and you shoot 84. It’s hard because I wanted to do well there, I wanted to play well, I wanted to defend my title.

“I’m not saying I wanted to defend by trying to win, obviously I’m trying to win but I want to do – a respectable showing for a past champion, so it was a tough time.

billy horschel wins

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Billy Horschel stars at Corales Puntacana Championship

“But at the same time, I knew we were moving in the right direction even though I felt like every two or three steps we would go, or every step we went forward, we went back two or three steps.

“I think it’s just a tireless effort and the work that I put in, my team’s put in, trying to search for the answers and the solutions, and we got some of those answers and solutions early in June and since then, we’ve been moving in the right direction.

“Probably not as fast as I always want, I want everything to be done quicker but sometimes, it’s a slower process and you’ve just got to stay patient and understand you will get the result if you continue to believe and put in the work and the time.”

Horschel played stunning golf over the weekend at the windy but wide Corales. After a 66 on Saturday, he carded a superb nine-under-par 63 to overcome a three-shot deficit to steal the title from Wesley Bryan, Charley Hoffman and Kevin Tway.

12 one-putts on Sunday saw to it that the former FedEx Cup champion won for the first time since tasting glory at the Memorial Tournament in 2022. Horschel is also becoming a man of the world now that he has won seven times in America, once in the UK (at the 2021 BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth) and now the Dominican Republic.

Horschel’s timeline to the airport was partly filled with signing hats and taking pictures behind the stand surrounding the par-4 18th green, all of which he was happy to do. He will prove a popular winner around these parts if he was to return in 2025.

But he never doubted his ability to recreate the success that once took him to 11th in the Official World Golf Rankings.

Golf is “fickle” he said. His secret was to harness his experience on the PGA Tour plus the love from his family, which consists of his wife Brittany and children Skylar Lillian, Colbie Rae, Axel Brooks.

Horschel put his stamp on an event being played opposite to the RBC Heritage at Harbour Town, where one Scottie Scheffler is in control.

“Shocking! Scottie Scheffler’s winning again,” he said as he waited for his own victory to be confirmed.

You’ve won again too, Billy.

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Billy Horschel wins again! Can the American taste more success in 2024? Tell us on X!

Matt Chivers

Matt Chivers

Now on the wrong side of 25, Matt has been playing golf since the age of 13 and was largely inspired to take up the game by countless family members who played golf during his childhood.

Matt is a member at Royal Cinque Ports in Deal playing off a 5 handicap, just a pitching wedge away from his hometown of Dover where he went to school and grew up. He has previously been a member at Etchinghill and Walmer and Kingsdown in Kent.

Having studied history at the University of Liverpool, Matt went on to pass his NCTJ Exams in Manchester a year later to fulfil his lifelong ambition of becoming a journalist. He picked up work experience along the way at places such as the Racing Post, the Independent, Sportsbeat and the Lancashire Evening Post.

Matt joined NCG in February 2023 and is the website’s main source of tour news, features and opinion. He has reported live from events such as The Open, the Ryder Cup and The Players Championship, having also interviewed and spent time with some of the biggest names in the sport.

Consuming tour golf on what is a 24/7 basis, you can come to Matt for informed views on the game and the latest updates on the PGA Tour, DP World Tour, LPGA Tour, Ladies European Tour and LIV Golf.

What’s in Matt’s bag: Cobra LTDx LS driver, Cobra LTDx 3-wood, TaylorMade P7MC irons, Ping Glide 4.0 wedges, Odyssey putter.

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