Former Zurich Classic champion Billy Horschel will pair with Scott Piercy
NEW ORLEANS, LA (March 29, 2018)—European Ryder Cup stalwarts Ian Poulter and Graeme McDowell, whose combined record is 20-9-4, have teamed together to play in the 2018 Zurich Classic, announced Steve Worthy, CEO of the Fore!Kids Foundation, producer of the tournament.
“Ian Poulter and Graeme McDowell are two of the most successful Europeans in recent Ryder Cup history,” said Worthy. “Their impressive record of team play makes them a pair to watch in our tournament this year,” added Worthy.
“And we are always glad to have Billy Horschel in our field, this year playing with Scott Piercy,” said Worthy. “Billy won the Zurich Classic for his first PGA TOUR title in 2013, so this is a special tournament for him, and he is always one of our most popular players in New Orleans,” Worthy added.
In five Ryder Cup competitions, Poulter is undefeated in singles and has compiled a 12-4-2 record overall. In 2012, he went 4-0 in leading the European team to its second consecutive victory. He served as vice-captain of the 2016 European team.
In their only Ryder Cup match together, Poulter and McDowell defeated Jim Furyk and Kenny Perry in fourballs 1-up in the 2008 matches at Valhalla.
Poulter has won twice on the PGA TOUR—both World Golf Championship titles. He also has claimed 13 international victories, including the 2011 Volvo World Match Play Championship.
His best finish this season on the PGA TOUR was a fifth in the WCG—Dell Technologies Match Play just completed March 25.
In addition to his five Ryder Cup appearances, he has also played on five World Cup teams, three Seve Trophy squads and competed in the 2016 Eurasia Cup.
Playing with Geoff Ogilvy, he finished tied for 32nd in last year’s inaugural team format Zurich Classic. His best individual finish at the Zurich Classic was a tie for seventh in 2006.
McDowell has posted a 8-5-2 record in his four Ryder Cup appearances. He has also played in five World Cups and two Seve Trophy competitions. He played a prominent role in Great Britain and Ireland’s retention of the Walker Cup in 2001, even though he played collegiately at the University of Alabama-Birmingham, where he won the 2002 Fred Haskins Award, given annually to the top collegiate golfer in the U.S.
He has three PGA TOUR titles in his career, including the 2010 U.S. Open, when he became the first European to win the championship since Tony Jacklin in 1970. He has also won eight international victories, including the 2013 Volvo World March Play Championship.
His best finish in the Zurich Classic came in 2006, when he tied for 15th.
Horschel won the 2013 Zurich Classic with a 20-under 268, topping the previous-best 72-hole score at TPC Louisiana by a stroke. The following season, he fired off one of the best closing stretches in PGA TOUR history and won the 2014 FedExCup on the strength of a second in the Deutsche Bank Championship and consecutive victories in the BMW Championship and the season-ending TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola. He became the youngest FedExCup winner in history at age 27.
His best finish this season was a tie for 11th at the Sentry Tournament of Champions. He qualified for that tournament by winning his fourth PGA TOUR title last season, the 2017 AT&T Byron Nelson.
Horschel was a three-time first-team All-American at University of Florida in 2006-07 and 2009 and a second-team selection in 2008. He earned a spot on the victorious 2007 U.S. Walker Cup team that included future PGA TOUR stars Rickie Fowler, Dustin Johnson, Chris Kirk, Colt Knost, Jamie Lovemark, Webb Simpson and Kyle Stanley.
Piercy has won three times on the PGA TOUR. A native and resident of Las Vegas, Nevada, his first win came at the 2011 Reno-Tahoe Open.
His best result this season was a tie for sixth at the Career Builder Challenge. His best finish in the Zurich Classic was a tie for 13th in 2012.
The Zurich Classic is the only team tournament on the PGA TOUR season. This year’s 72-hole stroke team play format will feature Four-Ball (best ball) during the first and third rounds and Foursomes (alternate shot) during the second and fourth rounds. The starting field will consist of 80 teams. Following the conclusion of the second round, the field will be cut to the low 35 teams and ties. In case of a tie after 72 holes, there will be a sudden-death playoff using the Four-Ball format.