How this recent PGA Tour winner had an unusual start to his pro career

While Australian Lucas Herbert just had his PGA Tour breakthrough with a win at the Bermuda Championship, he’s still an unfamiliar name for many golf fans, despite the fact that he’s risen to No. 43 in the world.

Most of that can be attributed to the fact that Herbert competes primarily on the European Tour, though American fans will likely see a lot more of him now that he’s locked up his PGA Tour status with the win in Bermuda.

On this week’s episode of Subpar, the 25-year-old explained to hosts Colt Knost and Drew Stoltz how he ended up on the European Tour in the first place.

lucas herbert swings driver
The ’12 minute’ driver that led Lucas Herbert to victory in Bermuda
By: James Colgan

“I always loved playing in America. I never really wanted to go through Europe,” Herbert said. “And then, I had a really nice finish to the 2017 season. I’d finished like seventh on the order of merit in Australia, which got me some starts on the European Tour with the co-sanctioning events. We went to PGA Tour China Q-School, and the Canadian tour Q-School. I’m not the biggest fan of China, and that’s probably the nice way to put it.

“So I was sitting in a hotel room in China at Q-School, and I was like, how do I not come back here again?” Herbert continued.” I just looked through, I went to the Singapore Open and finished 8th, which got me into the Open. And I ironically had a start in the China Open, and I had some Aussie tour starts that were co-sanctioned with Europe, and I was like, you know what? I’m just gonna have a go at Europe. So, yeah, off the back of that, called my manager and I was like, hey, can you try and get me like whatever starts you can get me in Europe. I don’t care what events they are. I’ll just go play the worst events, the ones that no one wants to travel to. Anything. I’ll go play anything in Europe, just to try and get a start and play out there just so that I don’t have to go to China. So that’s sort of how the Europe journey started.”

The strategy turned out to be a good one for Herbert, who won twice on the European Tour (the 2020 Dubai Desert Classic and the 2021 Irish Open) before claiming his maiden victory on the PGA Tour in Bermuda.

For more from Herbert, including his favorite places to play in the world, and why making a Presidents Cup team is so important to him, check out the full interview below.

Jessica Marksbury
Golf.com

As a four-year member of Columbia’s inaugural class of female varsity golfers, Jessica can out-birdie everyone on the masthead. She can out-hustle them in the office, too, where she’s primarily responsible for producing both print and online features, and overseeing major special projects, such as GOLF’s inaugural Style Is­sue, which debuted in February 2018. Her origi­nal interview series, “A Round With,” debuted in November of 2015, and appeared in both in the magazine and in video form on GOLF.com.