By Brian Keogh
David Carey. Photo by Golffile
Team Ireland’s David Carey has taken another positive step in his professional career by signing with major UK resort operator Darwin Escapes as their brand ambassador.
The Dubliner (24) had a successful amateur career, helping Ireland win the 2013 Boys Home Internationals at Forest Pines before going on to join the paid ranks at the age of 18.
His first professional win came in 2019 at the Cervino Open on the Alps Tour in Italy, where he also shot an incredible 11-under par 57 in the opening round - the lowest round ever recorded in a World Ranking professional event.
He continued this form to win again at the First Stage of European Tour Qualifying School at Bogogno in Italy, opening with an 11-under 61.
While 2020 was a tough year with many events cancelled due to COVID-19, Carey shot another 11-under 61 in the Dom Pedro Victoria Open on the Portugal Pro Tour before claiming a Team Ireland event at The K Club last summer, making it three wins in under 12 months.
The coronavirus quickly put paid to the rest of the season before Carey returned to Portugal in January and won his first event of 2021—a three-round charity pro-am at Quinta Do Lago where he shot rounds of 69, 69 and 64 to tie with European Tour card holder Cormac Sharvin.
He’s thrilled to join forces with Darwin Escapes who operate Dundonald Links in Ayrshire, The Springs Resort & Golf Club in Oxfordshire and Kilnwick Percy Resort & Golf Club in Yorkshire.
“I think our ambitions match nicely,” Carey said of Darwin Escapes, who operate three golf courses and 22 luxurious holiday resorts across the UK.
“They have done some fantastic renovation work at Dundonald Links and The springs, and they have put in for GC Quads in the indoor fitting areas as well as PuttView greens and state-of-the-art facilities.
“They are doing everything properly and just investing in their product aligns with my own view that if you put in the work things will come together.
“Having Darwin Escapes and Team Ireland on board is fantastic. It’s a nice confidence boost to know you have that backing and people behind you.”
Ashley Pheasant, Head of Golf at Darwin Escapes said: “We are very excited to welcome David, aka ‘Mr 57’ to Darwin Escapes and support him on his professional golf journey. He is incredibly ambitious, very driven to succeed and a true golfing talent. We are very much looking forward to watching his progress in the coming months.”
Carey hopes to compete on the Alps Tour and the Challenge Tour in 2021 and secure a European Tour card for the 2022/23 season.
“It’s fantastic to be working with Darwin Escapes,” he said. “Having the backing of such a supportive company going into the 2021 season is a massive boost. As well as being great people, the direction and ambition they have is hugely impressive and resonates with my own. I’m looking forward to working with the Darwin Escapes team for many years to come.”
Carey has made massive changes during the most recent COVID-19 lockdown, changing to single length irons in a bid to achieve great consistency as well as increasing his ball speed.
“I'm hitting it 35 yards further than I was, then I have more length, and I feel like I'm a better player all around,” he said. “I feel like I have a better game than I had then. I'd just love to get out and have a run of events.”