Welcome Conor Purcell to The Kerrigans team

Welcome Conor Purcell to The Kerrigans team

Barry Kerrigan |

Anyone that knows me will know that that I am a keen golfer. I have always found it a great way of escaping from a busy life as it is a sport that requires a huge amount of concentration, focus, patience, and skill, which means you have little room to think about much else. To me, it is a modern-day "mindfulness" activity. It is also one of the few sports you can play into your later years (as a middle-aged man this is good to know!!).

I first began golfing at an early age as both my parents and my brother played and they encouraged me to join them. It was around the same time that the great Severiano Ballesteros rolled in a 40ft putt in sudden death to win the 1985 Carrolls Irish Open in 1985 in Royal Dublin Golf Club, which I attended with my family. I still get goosebumps thinking about the atmosphere on the day which heightened my interest in the sport.
The sport itself and the golfers who play have changed so much since then with new technology in club-making not to mention the incredible strength and flexibility that modern players bring to the table. As an amateur golfer myself, I understand the importance of nutrition and hydration both on and off the course in helping players to maintain the focus, energy, and strength they need to compete at the highest level.
I have followed local golfer Conor Purcell's career since he won the South of Ireland in 2016. The “South” is an open amateur event and the oldest provincial golf championship in Ireland. A number of players who went on to become Professional Golfers and represent Britain & Ireland in the Ryder Cup have won the event, including John O’Leary, Darren Clarke, Paul McGinley, and Graeme McDowell. Padraig Harrington also reached the final twice.Conor then went on to win the Australian Amateur Championship making him the first Irishman to win the famed title. He also represented Great Britain & Ireland in the 2019 Walker cup so I was delighted that he has accepted the invitation to become a Brand Ambassador for Kerrigans. If you would like to learn more about Conor Purcell, we sat down together to get to know him better and have shared some of what he told us below.



Q. Name
A. Conor Purcell
Q. Age
A. 23
Q. Living
Malahide, Co.Dublin
Malahide Community School
University of North Carolina at Charlotte
Q.Golf Club Growing Up
How do you first get into Golf?
My dad was the head pro of Portmarnock Golf Club from the early 90’s. An injury at the age of 13 took me away from tennis which I played competitively in Ireland so I turned to golf and never looked back since.

Did you play any other sports growing up?
Tennis was big in my family with my two brothers being coaches in Malahide so that and golf were my main two growing up.

Tell us more about your Amateur Career?
First club handicap was 22. I then represented Portmarnock GC at junior and senior level and won the all Ireland senior cup with them in 2018. I also represented Ireland from the age of 15 all the way up to Senior level before representing GB&I in the Walker Cup in 2019. Following that, I became 2016 South of Ireland Champion, and 2019 Australian Amateur Champion.

When did you turn Pro?
In November 2019.

What is life like on Tour?
Life on tour as I know it is a bit different than normal. Having turned pro very close to a pandemic, things are a lot more difficult than in years past. Trips away become longer with quarantines in place in certain countries. Weeks on the road are very busy. Things are definitely not as glamorous as some people think. It’s a lot of early morning flights, hotels and golf courses. The only time you get to explore places Is when you miss a cut which you like to keep to a minimum!

What is your typical weekly schedule like when playing in a tournament?
Usually, we fly to the event on a Monday. Practice round on Tuesday followed by some practice on the range and putting green. Wednesday is usually 9 holes if you’re not in the Pro Am followed by some more range and short game work. Once Thursday hits, it’s all systems go and you do your best to manage your energy for the whole week. A couple of weeks in a row can become very tiring so it’s about learning what works for you with regards to workouts/practice on tournament weeks.

How has your golf swing changed over the years?
I would say my swing has stayed relatively similar as the years have gone on. I’m a lot stronger now than I was when I first started so that plays a role but as a golfer, you tend to swing fairly similar throughout your career, just fine-tuning it as the years go on.

With such a big focus on power and strength in Golf, for example with Brooks, McIlroy, Tiger etc. all bulking up and working out hard, is this more of a focus for you as well on how you live your life off the course?
Thankfully I’ve been so fortunate to know Stephen Weinmann who owns a gym called PTI here in Kinsealy and I’ve been training under him and all the great coaches there since I was about 13/14. They’ve all really helped me get to know my body and almost be able to train myself mainly so that I can stay injury-free and also hold some strength. I played around this winter with some speed work in light of all this Dechambeau talk and it’s only helped my game so far this year.

How big of a role does nutrition play in your life off and on the course?
Nutrition is massive and I’ve always placed a big emphasis on it since I started. Similar to the gym I was fortunate to work with Michelle Hone at the Fit Clinic for a while who’s based here in Malahide. The key for me especially with all my travel is having sufficient protein whilst on the road to hold onto as much muscle as I can if I don’t have access to gyms etc. I do my best to eat healthily. I would say 80% of the time but I also allow plenty of flexibility with things.

Do you like to cook?
I do enjoy to cook but I’m no Gordon Ramsey! Since returning home from college, I've been getting too used to my mother’s home cooking so my culinary skills are a bit rusty!

What is your signature dish?
I’d have to go plain and simple. I’m a fan of Kerrigans Turkey Burgers with some pan-fried potatoes and some veg along with that.

What would your Death Row meal be?
Kerrigan's Wagyu Rib Eye Steak and all the trimmings.

What is your favourite Golf Course In Ireland?
Sandy Hills Rosapenna.

What is your favourite Golf Course outside of Ireland?
The Royal Melbourne.

What clubs are in your bag?
I’m sponsored by Srixon so I use Cleveland Wedges and Srixon Irons and Driver. I have a Scotty Cameron putter and Titleist 3 wood.

Draw or Fade?

What do you think are the biggest mistakes you see amateurs make?
I think club golfers get too caught up in playing stableford for their handicaps. At the end of the day no matter what handicap you are, getting the ball in the hole in the least amount of shots is the goal, so I would say focus on strokes rather than points.

What would the Conor of today say to 16-year-old Conor?
Keep the head down, don’t sweat any of the small things. Have a good perspective of things and realise that things will always be ok no matter if you fulfill your dreams or not.
    Social Media Handles 
    Instagram: conor_purcell
    Twitter: @conorp45

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