Fired up US skipper Paul Azinger wants to blow Europe's Ryder Cup battleship out of the water by firing up the home town crowd.

The fiery American, 48, believes the 40,000 strong Kentucky gallery can act as his "13th man" and neutralise Nick Faldo's attempt at a charm offensive.

And he sent a massive warning to European captain Nick Faldo by hinting that he could send out Kentucky boys JB Holmes and Kenny Perry in the opening foursomes on Friday to pump up the fans to fever pitch.

Azinger said: "I've thought about what am I going to do with those two guys; should I put them together, should I keep them apart. You know, I'd like to put them off first match out to be honest with you and get this crowd rocking.

"I feel like the people of Kentucky have made me their own. I love this town and I love this state, and I couldn't think of a better place for us to be.

"I know it's going to be an energized crowd, so to that point we're going to embrace them and try to get them energized.

"All the while, the message is certainly always going to be to maintain a certain level of sportsmanship. We don't want anybody out of hand.

"Of course there will be alcohol served and of course be some minor cases, but we are engaging the crowd."

Azinger hopes to get the home crowd fired up tomorrow night when he hosts a jazzy "pep rally" in Louisville city centre complete with tee-shirt cannons, cheerleaders and rock bands.

And that's because he's determined not to make the same mistakes as 2004 skipper Hal Sutton, who was manoeuvred by Bernhard Langer's charm offensive at Oakland Hills.

Langer ordered his players to sign as many autographs as possible on the practice days to woo the hostile local fans and avoid a repeat of Brookline in 1999, when emotions boiled over.

Azinger explained: "We actually are loving our gallery. I want to treat them like they're going to be our 13th man. We've got little lapel pins that we're passing out to the crowd that has the American flag on it and the Ryder Cup.

"We're tossing these to the crowd, and they're loving that. They're screaming for more pins. I don't think we have enough. We only have 10,000. That might not be enough."

"We're going to do a pep rally Thursday night on Fourth Street. The City of Louisville is putting it on, and we're going to come down there and blow tee shirts out of guns to the crowd, stuff like that. We want to embrace this crowd.

"We don't want what happened in '04 to happen again. The Europeans are already requesting Sharpies (marker pens) on the tees and stuff like that, so I know what they're trying to do."

Azinger was expected to set the course up to suit his long hitters but admitted yesterday that he doesn't have enough firepower in his side to take advantage.

The rough has been cut back to make it easier to blast birdies galore but apart from monster hitter Holmes, Anthony Kim and Stewart Cink, the American team is no longer off the tee than Faldos troops.

He explained: "I felt like if I could seek some kind of an advantage and exploit our strength, I would try to do it. Europe has been able to exploit their strength and neutralize the Americans, and they've taken advantage of  home course.

"The Europeans set the courses up to neutralize our strength, which has generally been power and my thought is I want to try to exploit our power.

"But it  turns out we don't have a team with great power. We have some powerful players, but I thought we would have seven bombers and five guys that weren't bombers, and it's not the case. I don't think right now that I've been able to grab a course advantage.

"The first cut in some spots is wider than it would ordinarily be. But I think other than that, I really didn't see anything or find anything that I could do to gain a big edge."

Despite that claim, Azinger knows that Holmes has the power to give the Americans a big advantage in foursomes or fourballs.

And he got a taste of what the Kentucky boy - the second longest player on the PGA Tour after Bubba Watson - can do with a driver in his hands.

Playing the driveable, 352-yard 13th in yesterday's practice round, Holmes cut the dogleg and drove the island green to send the crowd wild.

Aziner said: "I believe the hole is 328 or 330 to the front of the green, and J.B. Holmes flew it right on the green, and the crowd went absolutely crazy. That was just kind of a dose of what we could be in for, and I look forward to it."