Shane Lowry insists he’s ready to win again after hitting an “all-time low” following his long injury lay off over the winter.
The Offaly star, 24, suffered a huge blow to his confidence when he came back after four months out with a broken wrist and missed his first three cuts this season.
But after back-to-back top-13 finishes in Korea and Spain he feels ready to grab his first victory since his 2009 Irish Open triumph when he heads to Mallorca this week for the Iberdrola Open.
Targeting victory in one of the weakest events on the circuit, Lowry insisted: “I am probably going to Mallorca with a bit of expectation. I am a confidence player and when I get some confidence I tend to keep going and my main goal this year is to try to win again.”
Lowry was a nightmare 36 over par as he missed the cut in Sicily, Spain and Morocco in his first three starts of the year.
After shooting twice in the 80s and breaking par just once, he took two weeks off to regroup at home and came out a new man.
Tied for 11th in the Spanish Open on Sunday, he’s riding high again and targeting his first tour wins since he turned professional following his historic Irish Open victory as an amateur .
Lowry said: “A few of the scores I shot when I came back from the injury were a bit of knock to my confidence because I never shoot scores like that.
“I was pretty much at an all-time low for a while but I kept going and when I had those two weeks off I played golf almost every day trying to get my feel back.
“When I went to China and Korea, my aim was just to play four rounds and try and get something going. But I got into contention in Korea and it was the same last week in Barcelona. I started to play really well again and I’m feeling good about things.
“To be honest, the last two weeks I felt I played well. I played good enough on Sunday to contend but it just didn’t happen for me on the greens.”
Lowry’s Irish Open win gave him a two year exemption which runs out at the end of this season. Yet his slow start to the campaign left him well down the Race to Dubai standings and while he has now picked up €68,231 from his last two starts to move up to 117th in the money list, he insists he is not worried about losing his card.
“The first objective is to get €250,000 up on the money list to be safe but I feel I am a good enough player not to have to worry about that,” he said
“My main goal this year is to try to win again and I am not thinking about keeping my card and never think about it on the golf course. I never look at the Order of Merit in that sort of way.”
Lowry will have a week off after Mallorca before delving into the meat of the season in the BMW PGA Championship at Wentworth.
After that he’s entered the US Open qualifier at Walton Heath and also plans to tee it up in the Open Championship qualifier following the Celtic Manor Wales Open.
“I’ll play the Italian Open if I don’t qualify for the US Open but I’d really love to play in another major again. I really enjoyed the Open at St Andrews and the US PGA at Whistling Straits. So I’d love to get into the US Open and see how I’d get on at a course like Congressional.”
Lowry is one of seven Irishmen heading to Mallorca alongside sponsor’s invite Gary Murphy, Darren Clarke, Paul McGinley, Damien McGrane and Challenge Tour regulars Simon Thornton and Colm Moriarty.
Murphy, who lost his card last year, has a card from the One Asia Tour while Clarke will be making his first tour appearance since he played in the Hassan II Trophy in Morocco five weeks ago.
The 43-year old Dungannon star, who is 92nd in the Race to Dubai standings, has slipped to 124th in the latest world rankings.
Once a fixture in the world’s top 10, Clarke is now only the sixth highest ranked Irish player ranked behind Graeme McDowell (fifth), Rory McIlroy (sixth), Padraig Harrington (41st), Lawrie (121st) and Gareth Maybin (122nd).
Maybin, who retired with a leg injury during last week’s Spanish Open at El Prat, is getting married this week.
Thornton finished 21st in last week’s Allianz Challenge de France at Disneyland Paris but Moriarty narrowly missed the cut despite two level par rounds.