• "I want to be employed in the best job I can," said McDowell
• Comments come as European Tour membership set to change
The European Tour has been dealt another significant blow after Graeme McDowell revealed that he would be prioritising the PGA Tour – despite heading into a Ryder Cup year.
The 36-year-old, who has dropped from No.15 to No.85 in the world since the start of 2015 after a disastrous season which has yielded just one top ten, which came at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic back in February.
And as he looks to regain form, the Florida-based former US Open champion revealed that he’d be best suited trying to do so on the PGA Tour.
"Making a living is what it’s all about" - Graeme McDowell
“My playing privileges on this side of the Atlantic are more important to me than my playing privileges on the European Tour, simply because when you boil it all down and look at it from a purely monetary point of view, I want to be employed in the best possible job I can,” said Graeme McDowell frankly ahead of the OHL Classic at Mayakoba.
“The European Tour means a lot to me. I’m very proud of it, I’m very loyal to it. The Ryder Cup is really important to me. But making a living is what it’s all about.”
His comments come as European Tour chief executive Keith Pelley is expected to make changes on eligibility for the tour, reducing the number of qualifying events from 13 (including majors and WGC events), to five regular season events, benefiting the likes of McDowell who is currently ranked outside of the world top 50 and therefore ineligible for most WGC events.
In September, Paul Casey said that he was considering not rejoining the European Tour in January, a move which would end his hopes of competing in the 2016 Ryder Cup at Hazeltine under the current regulations, despite an excellent 2015 which has seen him become the third-highest ranked Englishman in the world behind Justin Rose and Danny Willett.
Graeme McDowell, whose last win came at the French Open in 2014 a few months before he was part of Europe’s Ryder Cup-winning team at Gleneagles, looks set to end his barren run without a top ten at the weather-delayed OHL Classic at Mayakoba as he co-leads with Scot Russell Knox, who is searching for back-to-back wins, with five holes left to play
Graeme McDowell :: Right to prioritise PGA Tour?
Is Graeme McDowell right to put the PGA Tour ahead of the European Tour, despite heading into a Ryder Cup year? Leave your thoughts in the ‘Comments’ section below.