As he prepared to become the only man in history to secure a second Volvo China Open title following his tie for second place in Malaysia last week, Nicolas Colsaerts summed up his return to The European Tour in six simple words. “It’s good to be home man.”
While the man affectionately known on Tour as ‘The Dude’ will continue his bid to breakthrough on the PGA Tour in the USA over the coming months, his return to The European Tour sparked an instant return to form as he posted his best result of the season in Malaysia.
It should come as no surprise that Colsaerts’ performance and result last week coincided with a return to an environment he calls home. As creatures of habit, professional golfers tend perform at their best when they are content and relaxed. The Dude is clearly feeling The European Tour love.
“It was amazing but after two holes of practice last week in Malaysia I turned to Brian my caddie and said: ‘This just feels right’,” said the Belgian at the Genzon Golf Club in Shenzen.
“It’s hard to describe in some ways but I suppose if you want to simplify it then this environment and the people and the atmosphere is just what we are used to and where we have succeeded so it just feels like home to come back out on The European Tour.
“There are a lot of factors to that – the cultures, languages etc., but it is more what you have grown up around and the people you have built relationships with over the years that makes the difference. It just feels like a family here.
“America is very different and naturally becomes more difficult if you are not playing your best and coming up short as I have been at times. Then it can be a tough place to be.
“But at the same time I can’t just shut the door on America. I haven’t been out there that long and if I can take some of the mojo I have found over the last week or so back to the states in my suitcase then it could all change pretty quickly over there.”
If the Colsaerts mojo picks up its usual Volvo vibes, last week’s tie for second place behind runaway winner Lee Westwood could be bettered in China.
The 31 year old’s two European Tour victories have come in Volvo sponsored events – the 2011 Volvo China Open and the 2012 Volvo World Match Play Championship – so he is understandably looking forward to the week ahead with serious optimism.
“It’s pretty difficult for me not to feel the Volvo vibes,” he smiled. “I have done well in their events and they always put on a pretty good show and look after the players really well.
“They are definitely up there with our biggest supporters and to have a history of doing well in their events always gives you a little boost heading into a Volvo tournament. All of those things are part of feeling so at home over here.”