Hoey dumps Horizon over McIlroy focus

Cormac Byrne

RISING star Michael Hoey has sensationally dropped Dublin-based Horizon Sports management because they are too focused on Rory McIlroy.

Hoey, who won last weekend’s Hassan II Trophy in Morocco, has now moved to 74th in the world rankings and into contention for a debut appearance at the Ryder Cup.

Discussions between the parties have been ongoing for over a year |but Hoey finally made the decision following his fourth European Tour victory in Agadir over the weekend.

Hoey expressed his disappointment in feeling overlooked in business initiatives and none more so with McIlroy on the books.

“I was in a business relationship with Horizon but I feel I was not benefitting from any business in the arrangement as much as I could have been,” said Hoey.

“We all know economies around the world are tight and none more so in Ireland with regards to sponsors.

“But in fairness to Conor (Ridge) |he was very good to me especially in finding sponsorship when I started out on the Challenge Tour.

“He also managed to pull plenty of strings when Gareth Maybin and myself represented Ireland at the World Cup qualifier in Aruba.

“It was more beneficial to me back then but times have changed for me.”

Hoey and his wife, Bev, had been in discussion with Ridge since this time in 2011. They met late last year during the Barclays Singapore Open to discuss Hoey’s arrangements. However with nothing concrete in place, the Hoey’s formally advised Horizon Sports in February that Hoey would be running his own business affairs.

“As it is, Bev looks after all my personal finance matters so she will continue to do that aspect of my golf,” he said. “So I have been thinking about if for some time and it’s not as though I’m dropping Conor without any notice.

“But with Rory now on board and playing more in the States their management has changed and altered.”