An “inspirational” character who is an ambassador for Woburn Golf Club has gone from working in the pro shop at Leighton Buzzard Golf Club to being the hero of Europe’s Ryder Cup win over the USA at the weekend.
Ian Poulter, 36, who now lives in Florida with his wife and four children, won all four of his matches in Medinah, Chicago, to help Europe to a 14.5 to 13.5 victory over the USA.
Sunday’s singles victory over Webb Simpson gave him a 100 per cent record of four wins and an impressive total of 12 wins from 15 matches in four Ryder Cups.
After the drama, Europe’s capain Jose Mario Olazabal admitted that Ian reminded him of the late legend Seve Ballesteros.
Ian was an assistant professional at the Plantation Road-based Leighton Buzzard Golf Club before turning pro and celebrated his first European Tour success in 2000 with a “welcome home” party and has since gone on to be Europe’s most successful golfer in the bi-annual Ryder Cup confrontations.
Club president Syd Pniewski said yesterday: “Ian’s outstanding success is no surprise to those who know him. His coach Lee Scarbrow was absolutely right in his predictions that Ian would become one of the best 10 golfers in the world, and we are proud to have played a part in his development.”
While Ian continues to show an interest in activities at Leighton Buzzard, he is now professionally attached to Woburn Golf and Country Club as a touring professional and has been since 2003.
He is extremely supportive of junior golf and in July 2011 held his sixth consecutive Ian Poulter Junior Invitational which, with the support of his sponsors, was hosted at Woburn on the Marquess’s Course.
Glenna Beasley, marketing manager at Woburn Golf Club, who has known the golfing star for a long time, said: “It is absolutely unbelievable. We are all so delighted and very proud for him and the team, too. I watched it until the bitter end.
“He is such a determined person who had made his mind up to get there to the Ryder Cup.”
For more reaction see today’s issue of the LBO.