The Irish Open is to return to The K Club as part of a long-term deal with the DP World Tour, which will see the island of Ireland’s national Open played at the former Ryder Cup venue in 2023, 2025 and 2027.
The K Club’s commitment to the development of Irish professional golf is further enhanced by the news that the resort’s second Arnold Palmer-designed course, Palmer South, will also play host to the Challenge Tour’s Irish Challenge in the intervening years, beginning this July and again in 2024 and 2026.
The announcement continues the momentum surrounding the Irish Open, with Horizon Therapeutics – the global biotechnology company headquartered in Dublin – having signed a six-year title sponsorship deal in February, beginning with this year’s event at Mount Juliet Estate from June 30-July 3.
Next year will be just the second time The K Club has hosted the Irish Open, having done so for the first time in 2016, when Rory McIlroy claimed a famous victory.
Ten years prior to that, the Kildare venue made history when it became the first Irish club to host the Ryder Cup. Under Captain Ian Woosnam, Europe enjoyed a commanding 18½-9½ victory over the USA – with recently-announced European Captain for 2023, Henrik Stenson, holing the winning putt on his debut in the biennial contest.
Guy Kinnings, the DP World Tour’s Deputy CEO, Ryder Cup Director and Chief Commercial Officer, said: “We share a special connection with The K Club through their hosting of the 2006 Ryder Cup, and we thank them for their commitment to the development of Irish golf through this long-term deal with both the DP World Tour and Challenge Tour.
“This news, along with the announcement earlier in the year of Horizon as title sponsors of the Irish Open until at least 2027, underlines the strength of our sport in Ireland, as we build towards the return of the Ryder Cup to Irish shores for its centenary edition in five years’ time at Adare Manor.”
Paul Heery, General Manager of The K Club, said: “The K Club has always been well known as a venue for hosting successful, international golf events and now with the guidance and fresh energy from new ownership, we are delighted to be back hosting tournaments of this calibre once again.
“The K Club is evolving. We are on a journey to establish a new legacy at the resort where supporting the golfing community in Ireland is an extremely important focus for us. The team at The K Club are incredibly proud to be making this long-term commitment to Irish golf which will see us host six years of high profile tournaments in Ireland. We very much look forward to welcoming players from all over the world to The K Club and watching the dramatic action unfold on the fairways of our Arnold Palmer designed courses once again.”
Timothy P. Walbert, Chairman, President and CEO of Horizon Therapeutics: “To have this historic tournament associated with one of Ireland’s most prized golf venues signifies the momentum that is building for the sport and for the Horizon Irish Open. As we continue to grow as a company in Ireland, we also look forward to doing our part to grow the interest in the island’s national open and are excited for what the future will bring with The K Club and the DP World Tour partnerships.”