The Fortinet Championship marks the start of a new PGA Tour season and, for Ricky Fowler, a few other changes that he hopes will lead to wins.
Fowler opened the week in Napa with 5 under 67s with no ghost games, including five birdies – not a bad start despite having a new caddy, (sort of) new swing coach, new stick and new irons.
“I always like it when there are no ghosts,” Fowler said after his first round at the Silverado Resort. “For the most part, it wasn’t necessarily a problem, except for one hole I had to do about 15 feet par after I hit the bunker. Other than that, it was a pretty easy day.”
Full Fortinet Championship Results
After more than a decade of being together, Fowler parted ways with longtime caddy Joe Skowron in August ahead of the FedEx St. Jude Championships and just last week parted ways with his swing coach. Now he has friend and veteran Tour caddy Ricky Romano, and this is the 33-year-old’s first tournament since he re-engaged swing coach Butch Harmon.
Fowler has also made changes to his bag, finding Scotty’s new stick in Memphis last month, and has taken up irons again in recent weeks. This is a much needed update for a player going through a mid-career slump; Fowler did not win the Tour with the 2019 WM Phoenix Open and finished in the top 10 – T-3 at the CJ Cup last season.
“I’ve had some good weeks in the last few years, but it shouldn’t just be a few weeks in those years, there should be more,” Fowler said when asked about what a good start could do for him. “The most important thing is to just get back to a stable game of golf, constantly compete and have a chance to win tournaments.”