Shane Lowry to concentrate on PGA Tour for start of 2016

‘I’m playing in America until the Irish Open which is my first tournament back in Europe’

 Shane’Lowry in Croke Park to announce Offaly GAA’s plans to develop a new centre of excellence. Photograph: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Shane’Lowry in Croke Park to announce Offaly GAA’s plans to develop a new centre of excellence. Photograph: Seb Daly/Sportsfile

 

Shane Lowry intends to steer his own path, especially when it comes to devoting more time playing in the United States.

At a time when Lee Westwood is giving up his PGA Tour card and another of Europe’s young guns Danny Willett is concentrating on playing in Europe, the Offalyman - now ranked 18th in the world - has decided to concentrate mainly on the PGA Tour for the early part of 2016 and won’t actually play in Europe until the Irish Open at The K Club in May.

Lowry - whose runner-up finish to Matt Fitzpatrick in last week’s British Masters moved him to sixth in the European points list on the Ryder Cup qualifying table for next year’s match at Hazeltine - has organised his schedule for next season with an early focus on playing in America, although tournaments like the WGC-Cadillac Championship, the WGC -Dell Matchplay and of course the Masters all double up as counting on the European Tour too.

Having earned his full tour card stateside on the back on his fine win in the WGC -Bridgestone Invitational at Akron last August, Lowry is in a position to pick and chose and plan out a schedule next season that suits him.

“I’m playing in America until the Irish open which is my first tournament back in Europe in May. Then I’m just playing the bigger events in Europe , that’s just the schedule I’m playing. Depending on how I’m doing, I would hope to make the Ryder Cup on the World’s points list and that’s where I’m looking at now.

“If I’m close to it on the other list, I might change my schedule a little bit to try and make it on that, I’ll just have to see. The Ryder Cup is a massive goal, but its not the be-all and end-all for next year. I think I just need to keep doing what I’m doing. I’m playing in big enough tournaments that if I keep doing what I’m doing I can definitely make that team and kick on up the world rankings and stuff like that,” said Lowry.

He added: “This year has been a great year. I won a WGC, I’m fourth on the race to Dubai . It will be hard to top next year but playing the Ryder Cup I suppose, and competing in majors is the next kind of thing I want to do. I’m not necessarily fitting my schedule around competing in majors but when I do get to majors I know I really want to compete in those.”

Lowry - who plans on attending Ireland’s rugby World Cup quarter-final in Cardiff on Sunday - had a busy up-coming schedule in his bid to chase down Rory McIlroy in the Race to Dubai. He intends to resume tournament play in the Turkish Airlines Open, the first tournament of the Final Series which then also takes in the WGC-HSBC Champions, the BMW Masters (both in China) and the season-ending DP World Tour Championship in Dubai.

“ Shane Lowry was speaking at the launch of Offaly GAA’s launch in Croke Park of “The Faitful Fields”, the development of a new Centre of Excellence for Gaelic Games in the county.

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