Funny. Inspiring. Thought provoking. We’ve heard it all this year. As we review what was another memorable European Tour season, here are our favourite quotes from the 2019 Race to Dubai campaign.
After a through look back through this season’s archives, we’ve compiled a list of the ten standout quotes from the current campaign to date.
I shot 49 once at Pebble Beach on PlayStation – Marcus Kinhult
He may have been teeing it up in his first Major Championship on American soil at the U.S. Open earlier this year, but Sweden’s Kinhult had a secret advantage over many of his more experienced competitors.
The 23-year-old revealed that he had in fact played the renowned Californian links layout regularly on a computer game, with a personal best of 49 (that’s an incredible 22-under-par!)
Kinhult would finish a very respectable tied 32nd in his first tournament at Pebble Beach – who needs practice rounds when you’ve got a PlayStation, eh?
I couldn’t even bring myself to go get my clubs from my locker. I just left them. I just went back to the hotel and cried – Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston
In one of the most revealing European Tour Player Blogs to date, ‘Beef’ wrote about his mental health struggles and how with professional help he is starting to rediscover his love for golf.
One week later at the Aberdeen Standard Investments Scottish Open the Englishman fired his lowest round on the European Tour – 62 – to finish in tied fourth and qualify for The Open Championship.
Following that performance, the 30-year-old gave another moving interview…
My goal is to make it to the European Tour, go there without shame and beat them all – Adem Wahbi
Following the introduction of events for disabled golfers on the European Tour this year – in partnership with the EDGA – young Belgian Adem Wahbi, who suffers from spastic diplegia, a form of cerebral palsy, told his story in this inspirational video.
Adem – who competed in an exhibition event at the Belgian Knockout and in the EDGA Scottish Open – gives an insight into his condition and outlines his aims for the future below.
That’s a lovely flight … just a shame it’s 25 yards left – Tyrrell Hatton
During the British Masters supported by Sky Sports, Hatton went viral after his relatable reaction to missing the green.
Who else has felt like the three-time European Tour winner here?
I drank rat poison in a freak accident when I was two. I took a drink of it thinking it was Coke, but it wasn’t. That moment changed my live forever – Christiaan Bezuidenhout
During an in-depth interview ahead of the Commercial Bank Qatar Masters, South Africa’s Bezuidenhout spoke of his battles with anxiety having developed a stutter aged four following an accident as a toddler.
Since that revelation, the 25-year-old has gone on to become a European Tour winner after triumphing at the Estrella Damm N.A. Andalucía Masters.
My biggest mistake in golf was not giving myself credit for the success I had. I treated success and defeat almost the same – Martin Kaymer
Prior to the U.S. Open, we spent some time with two-time Major Champion Kaymer who reflected on his career to date – and his mental approach to golf, and modern life.
You can read the fascinating interview in full here.
When I was ten years old, I used to imagine I had a putt to beat Tiger when practising. Just to play with him today was great – Lucas Bjerregaard
During this year’s WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Bjerregaard made headlines throughout the golfing world when he took down Tiger Woods 1UP in the quarter-final stages of the match play event.
The 28-year-old was unsurprisingly ecstatic to have taken down a player he’d dreamed of playing with since he was a child.
I had to stop myself from crying about four times on the back nine, just because of the level of the support – Rory McIlroy
It wasn’t to be for McIlroy at The Open this year, but after his second round 65 – in front of a raucous home crowd who were willing him on every step of the way – the Northern Irishman was quite rightly emotional.
I think I made a few new fans with those double bogeys – Francesco Molinari
If you were to describe Francesco Molinari in one word what would it be? We think humble would be right up there.
The 2018 Champion Golfer of the Year was beaten in a final-day duel with Woods at this year’s Masters Tournament, but that didn’t stop him from making light of what must have been a painful situation. Win or lose, a true champion in every sense.
Beat The Pro again next year? We’ll see! - Susan Hosang
As part of the celebrations of the centenary year of the KLM Open, the remarkable 100-year-old Susan Hosang took part in the event’s Beat The Pro competition.
Hosang only took up the sport 30 years ago – at the tender age of 70 – but she went head to head against some of the European Tour’s top professionals on the 13th hole at The International, in what was a special week for the long-running tournament.
When asked if she’d be back next year, she kept her cards close to her chest…
When I was at my lowest points, I didn’t think of getting better for golf – I wanted to get better for my family: my wife and my twin girls. I just wanted to enjoy life with them, so to be where I am now in golf is just a bonus – Rikard Karlberg
In one of the most revealing interviews of the year, Sweden's Rikard Karlberg gave a revealing insight into a difficult 18 months away from the game where he battled a serious infection and depression before returning to action this year, in a Player Blog.
Karlberg would finish the year with a European Tour card too, after holing this huge putt at Qualifying School to regain his playing rights.
My wife or my three wood? That’s a very easy question, it’s going to be the three wood – Henrik Stenson
A simple question and an emphatic answer. How can you not love Henrik?
To me it’s one of the best shots I’ve ever hit, it’s special - Jon Rahm
That was the Spaniard's response after teeing it up at the Old Course, St. Andrews, for the first time.
Rahm played the famous Scottish layout during his Alfred Dunhill Links Championship debut this year, where he was joined in the Pro-Am event by his father Edorta.
We were their to capture the first time the Rahms played at St. Andrews ...
I left it all out there – Justin Walters
Those were the words of an emotional Justin Walters after he secured his European Tour card for 2020 at the Portugal Masters, the last regular event of the 2019 campaign.
Earlier that week the South African had given a moving account of the tough year he’d had in a Player Blog, sharing details of a serious injury and struggling to come to terms with the death of his father.
I’m very proud to set my family up for life – Tommy Fleetwood
After returning to the winner’s circle with a play-off win over Kinhult in the Nedbank Golf Challenge hosted by Gary Player, Fleetwood reflected on what he’d achieved.
By triumphing in the Rolex Series event, the Englishman not only ended a 665 day wait for a title, but he also pocketed a first prize cheque of $2.5 million.
As this fact dawned on the 28-year-old he gave an answer befitting of one of the most popular and down to earth players on Tour.
To think I’m putting my name there before they do. It’s hard to believe – Jon Rahm
Fast forward to Dubai and the season ending DP World Tour Championship. Rahm has just won the event and the Race to Dubai following a blockbuster final day.
When he's told that he's become only the second Spanish player after the late, great Seve Ballesteros to win the Order of Merit he, unsurprisingly, gets emotional.
It's only right that we end our recap with this interview from the 2019 Race to Dubai Champion.