Proud dad puts chequebook away after Howell hits jackpot
RAY Howell can stop saving up for a double buggy after his son banked the £500,000 top prize at the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship.
With the Howell family expecting the addition of two new faces in the shape of twins to golfer David and his wife Emily in December, grandfather Ray was in the market for a top-of-the-range babymobile to ferry the newborns around in.
However, he can put his chequebook back in his pocket after his son claimed his first tournament victory in seven years in Scotland on Sunday.
Speaking to the Advertiser, Howell senior said: “There are twins coming in December and he’s now got enough money to buy a double buggy so that saves me.
“I screamed with delight and my neighbour was watching with me and I think he had to scrape me off the sealing I jumped so high. It’s just wonderful.
“He’s worked hard at it and to come from where he was - number 367 or something like that - is fantastic. It’s what it’s given him, the money doesn’t matter so much, it’s what it gets him into.
“Perhaps he’ll be at The Masters again and where he’s sitting now means he’s in next year’s Open.
“It does seem a very popular win and it’s just wonderful.
“It gets him into China and the world is now opening up to him again. Let’s hope he can get back to number nine again or even better than that.
“He’s got to be way up the rankings on that win alone and he’s only missed a couple of cuts in the last six months.”
Ray has watched his son deal with his demons in recent years as David fell from Ryder Cup star to down-on-his-luck also-ran struggling to retain his European Tour card.
After half a decade in the wilderness, however, the future looks bright for the Howell family.
“It hurts,” said Ray. “Being a father, it hurts seeing your son a bit depressed. I’m a very proud father.
“I kept in the background. I think he’s big enough and ugly enough to make his own mind up. You don’t try to control him. If he wanted advice I gave it, I never pushed myself into it.
“I was always there if he needed me and that’s the best way. I think you have to seen in the background.
“Emily has been very supportive for him and he’s got little Freddie (David Howell’s son) who’s a handful.”