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Billy Horschel will keep on banging the drum.
The 36-year-old American continues to split his time between the PGA Tour and DP World Tour as he seeks to evolve, both as a golfer and a person.
This year, the former FedEx Cup champion enjoyed his latest lengthy stint in Europe, starting at the Horizon Irish Open and finishing five weeks later at a deluged Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in St Andrews.
And speaking in the December issue of bunkered, Horschel candidly broke down why his American peers should change their schedules and join him more often in Europe.
“I’d love to see some of the other guys come over here and play,” he insisted. “The reception those guys get playing over here would trump the reception I’d receive.
“But the game of golf isn’t nearly as global as it used to be. Once the PGA Tour in the 2000s started really taking off financially, there wasn’t really a need for guys to travel.
“Guys didn’t see the benefits of travel, not only in how it can help your golf game and how it can make you a better player, but as a person as well. When you visit these countries that you’ve never been to and are out of your element, you grow as a person.
“That’s what humans have always done on this planet. I’d like to see more guys go over here but I’m not going to be the one to say they need to. I try to talk to some of them, tell them to come over and say which events I think they’d enjoy. But at the end of the day, they do what’s best for them.”
Horschel reached one of the lowest points of his career in June when posting a 12-over-par opening round 84 as the defending champion at the Memorial Tournament.
But he is now rejuvenated once more, later finding some improved form in Europe with three consecutive top-20 finishes before heading back Stateside.
So what is it about the DP World Tour that keeps Horschel racking up the air miles on trips across the Atlantic?
“The relaxed feel,” he explained. “Everyone’s a little more present and enjoying the moment here.
“Sometimes in America we can get caught up in the future, being where we want to be and we forget to enjoy what we have right here and now. The guys are great over here and they’ve been great to me. The support I’ve received here has been unreal.”
Horschel also still leans on some wisdom from his old college coach at the University of Florida, Buddy Alexander, who remains “one of the most influential people” in his life.
“Buddy said if you want to be considered a world class player you have to go and play around the world, and you’ve got to play well,” he recalled. “It’s made me a better player going to places I haven’t been before, adjusting to the conditions, temperatures and all the different ways the courses are set up compared to America.
“At the same time, as a person, having to communicate and get along and understand people from other countries, it’s a growth in itself. I’ve enjoyed the learning aspect and I continue to enjoy it.”
• Read the full interview with Billy Horschel in the December edition of bunkered, on-sale now from all good newsagents. Alternatively, why not subscribe? Click here for details. International subscriptions also available.
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