Rory McIlroy must love Fleetwood Mac because he’s going his own way.
The Irish Independent reported McIlroy is changing representation for the second time in less than two years, leaving Horizon Sports Management to start his own management team, headed by his father, Gerry.
The world No. 2 joined the Dublin-based Horizon and its leader Conor Ridge in October 2011 after deciding to leave Chubby Chandler and his International Sports Management. McIlroy was hoping for more attention from his representation, and Chandler, at the time, had a stable filled with major champions and high-ranking players. Good friend and countryman Graeme McDowell is represented by Horizon.
Since moving to Horizon, most of the sponsorship deals Chandler negotiated for McIlroy has been transitioned out, replaced by bigger deals. McIlroy swapped Oakley and Titleist for Nike Golf at the end of 2012, signed on with watchmaker Omega and sound system company Bose.
The Ulsterman denied rumors of a move at The Players Championship last week, while whispers of an imminent change have been going around since The Masters.
McIlroy is yet to win this season, with his best finish being a tie for second at the Valero Texas Open. He missed the cut in his season debut in Abu Dhabi, following a grand unveiling ceremony by Nike Golf. In March, McIlroy walked off the course after struggling mightily in the Honda Classic, first saying he was “not in a good place mentally” before his Horizon representation said it was a tooth problem that caused him to withdraw.
Meanwhile, Nike stablemate Tiger Woods, who has been rumored to be considering a representation change himself, has won four times on the PGA Tour this season to take the No. 1 spot in the world and expand his margin over McIlroy to his biggest lead at the top spot since 2010.