Kyle Cobb is the latest player in a growing band of young Americans starting their professional careers in Europe, and hopes to make an impact in this week’s Swiss Challenge.
The 24 year old had never been to Europe before he arrived in Sweden last month to begin the embryonic stages of his professional career, but he is taking inspiration from his compatriots Brooks Koepka and Peter Uihlein, who have both made quick transitions from the Challenge Tour to The European Tour in recent months.
Koepka won three Challenge Tour titles in two months earlier this year to earn instant promotion, while Uihlein played on the second tier last year before graduating from the Qualifying School in December and winning the Madeira Islands Open – BPI – Portugal in May.
“It’s exciting times,” said Cobb, a graduate of Florida State University. “It’s always been a dream of mine to travel the globe and golf is the vehicle I’m using to do that.
“I had opportunities to play in America after I finished college, but the opportunities were just as good over here. A lot of places want to see Americans coming over, and people always like to see diversity in the field.
“I knew I had a place to stay, as I have a good friend in Sweden. So I’ve been living in Stockholm – which is awesome – and I’m just trying to get invites to tournaments to play wherever I can.
“I really wanted to see different countries and different cultures. Besides going to Canada and Mexico I hadn’t been anywhere abroad, so for me it was a chance to travel the world and meet all kinds of new people, which is something I’ve always wanted to do. This is such a great opportunity for me.”
Numerous other Americans have opted to start their careers in Europe, such as Daniel Im, who is currently 19th in the Rankings, and Dodge Kemmer, while Sihwan Kim, who is Korean but was born and raised in Florida, is another taking Europe by storm.
“For sure it’s great to see Peter and Brooks doing so well this year, and it gives me way more confidence and hope of playing well out here also,” said Cobb. “I’ve played with Brooks since we were little kids and he’s always been a great player, but he’s not Hercules, so it shows me it can be done.
“Long term I would like to make Europe my home. That would be great. I fancy finding a place to base myself out of in Western Europe and travelling around to play all the different countries.”
As for Cobb’s favourite country so far, his answer was somewhat unexpected: “I loved France and Germany because they have unreal pastries! I don’t know how much weight I’ve put on since coming over but it’s definitely a few pounds. I just love the bakeries they have everywhere. You walk down the street and stop for a coffee and a pastry, then walk a little further and stop at another bakery. It’s dangerous!”