Rory McIlroy management is in the news again. On the same day that his Ryder Cup team mate Graeme McDowell did Europe’s Ryder Cup cause a favour by shooting down any talk of a rift between them over the ongoing legal action between the Holywood star and Horizon Sports Management, it’s been claimed that oppostion from McIlroy’s new management team led to the withdrawal of his backing for a book launched by his home club.
It appears that we can expect the imminent arrival of an official Rory McIlroy biography after McIlroy withdrew his backing for “Rory’s Club” over the use of family photographs he’d intended to use in his own publication.
According to the Belfast Telegraph, the book is the work of French born publisher Claude Costecalde, who lived beside Holywood Golf Club for more than a decade. “While the hard-back coffee table style book includes a foreward from the golfer himself, and was produced with the assistance of members of his family, it is not officially endorsed by the McIlroy management team.”
Olympic champion Dame Mary Peters had been billed as guest speaker but according to the Telegraph, the 1972 gold medallist ultimately did not appear, with Northern Ireland Tourist Board chairman Howard Hastings stepping in to deliver the main address.
In the Irish Independent version of the story, McIlroy withdrew his official backing for the book about his childhood golf club “as it contains family photographs he had intended to use in an upcoming autobiography.”
M. Costecalde’s previous books include religious publications such as “The Illustrated Family Bible.”
As for the speculation over a rift between McIlroy and McDowell, Karl MacGinty reports that’s wide of the mark.
“Of course we’re still friends. I’m inadvertently stuck in the middle of a legal matter,” he continued. “I’m very close to both parties and, of course, there’s going to be speculation about how that’s going to affect both relationships, which is a tough scenario.
“It’s tough for everyone, but Rory and I will always remain competitors, colleagues, peers and friends. I care a lot about what he does. I care a lot about how good he is and that will never change.”
The specualtion was fuelled, in part, by McIlroy’s non-attendance at McDowell’s wedding. But McDowell revealed that they had spoken about it beforehand.
“We spoke a few weeks before the wedding,” he explained. “Rory sent myself and Kristin a very nice congratulatory message and was disappointed he couldn’t be there for a number of reasons.”
Claire Williamson in the Belfast Telegraph sheds more light on McIlroy’s decision not to back the book and includes a quote from Dame Mary Peters on why she didn’t attend the launch, as planned:
Explaining her decision, Dame Mary said: “I have built up many friendships in sport throughout the years, of which Rory is one.”
She added that if Rory disapproved of the book she would not do anything to jeopardise that friendship.
As for the withdrawal of McIlroy’s support, the Telegraph reports that he was not best pleased when he say the book featured a slew of pictures he was keeping for a future autobiography:
The problem is said to have arisen when Rory was shown the book in Shanghai and he realised that photos had been included which he had wanted to keep for his future publication.
Dr Costecalde, who previously lived beside the Holywood course, said: “The book is out and it’s stunning and is a tribute by the club to Rory. I met Rory personally three weeks ago in Shanghai and he saw the book. It is a beautiful book.
“The royalties, rather than being paid to Rory, his family and his management, are being paid to the juvenile programme in Holywood Golf Club and if the book is successful we may go beyond that.
“This book is a motivational book for young golfers to show them how to accomplish a dream through hard work and dedication.”