British professional golfer Ian Poulter is celebrating a win at the Houston Open, after he made quite the comeback. On Friday he was 123rd on the leaderboard, but managed to golf his way to the very top by Sunday. Poulter is now set up to play at Augusta National in the upcoming Masters Tournament.
“To get this done today to get me to Augusta is amazing. My first strokeplay win in the States, and to do it with the Masters on the line is unbelievable. It’s going to take a little while to sink in. I’m super excited,” he told the media after his big win.
Poulter has the support of his wife, Katie Poulter, whom he married a decade ago.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. They Met More Than 20 Years Ago & They Currently Live in Florida
The Poulters met while he was on his way to getting his tour card before 1995. Details surrounding how they met are unclear, but they are one of the longest standing couples currently affiliated with the PGA tour. They tied the knot in 2007.
The couple currently resides in a beautiful home located in Orlando, Florida, according to The Sun.
The house is located on the prestigious Lake Nona Golf & Country Club where a few fellow PGA players also reside with their families. Lake Nona Golf & Country Club was designed by famed Tom Fazio and previously hosted the Solheim Cup.
A-list European golfers Graeme McDowell, Sergio Garcia, and Justin Rose are also residents of the community.
In recent years, Poulter promoted a video made by a drone that flew over the area to persuade possible buyers to check out the prestigious landscape.
2. They Have 4 Children
The Poulters are the proud parents of four children, Aimee-Leigh, 16, Luke, Lily Mai, and Joshua.
They had their first two children together before tying the knot and had two more after they said their “I do’s.”
Katie found out she was pregnant with their third child just before The Open in 2008. She waited until he finished the tournament before telling him the exciting news. A few months later, the couple welcomed their daughter, Lily Mai.
3. They Have Been Bashed for Being Wealthy & Some Believe They Like to Show Off
The Poulters have been known to show off, and have even been called “stuck up” from time to time. A few years ago, Ian tweeted a complaint about their nanny getting downgraded on a British Airways flight.
“Booked 6 business seats for my wife & nanny to fly home & @British_Airways downgrade my nanny so Katie has no help for 10 hours with 4 kids,” read his tweet.
He received a ton a criticism thereafter, and decided to defend his comments.
“Actually my wife is a real mum, we have the luxury of having some help, as it’s difficult to travel with 4 on your own. Lots do it without. Don’t think you should bring into question Katie’s mothering skills. You can bash me like you do already. She is a brilliant mum. It looks like I’m being a stuck up nob. But what is wrong with getting what you have paid for. I ordered a steak. Sorry you can have tomato,” he said.
Ian also posted a video of him and his children eating cereal out of the Ryder Cup, which provoked angry responses saying it was rude and disrespectful. These instances and social media blunders on his part might have had and affect in the vote by PGA Tour players naming him and Rickie Fowler the “Most Overrated on Tour.”
4. They Give Back by way of Ian’s Charity
Despite being known to show off when it comes to money, Ian Poulter dedicates a fair amount of his time to giving back. He has worked with multiple charities and organizations over the years, including Dreamflight, Chideo, and The Willow Foundation.
“Ian works with DreamFlight, The Willow Foundation and his Invitational event to impact the lives of youth in the U.S. and U.K. Dreamflight is a registered United Kingdom charity whose purpose is to take seriously ill and disabled children on their ‘Holiday of a Lifetime’ to theme parks in Central Florida,” reads his charity’s description on the PGA Tour website.
According to his website, Poulter raised over $240,000 for Dreamflight back in 2015.
In addition, he is an Ambassador for The Willow Foundation, “the only national charity working with seriously ill young adults aged 16 to 40 to fulfill uplifting and unforgettable Special Days. Since 1999, The Willow Foundation has fulfilled more than 12,000 Special Days for young adults living with life-threatening conditions such as cancer, motor neuron disease, cystic fibrosis, muscular dystrophy and Huntington’s disease,” his website reads, in part.
He previously hosted the Ian Poulter Invitational, in which junior golfers from the UK were given an opportunity to participate in “competition at a high level.”
5. Katie Poulter Accidentally Spent an Arnold Palmer Autographed $100 Bill
Before legendary golfer Arnold Palmer passed away, he became friends with Ian Poulter. The two golfers got to know one another and, years ago, Poulter ended up getting Palmer’s autograph on a $100 bill.
In 2017, Poulter was asked if he had any “special memories” of Palmer. That’s when he shared a pretty funny story involving a gift from Palmer that was sort of misplaced by Poulter’s wife, Katie.
“He signed $100 bill which my wife actually spent one time; I had to get another one done. It was in the safe. She didn’t realize it was actually signed by Arnie, so it’s out there somewhere. I have no idea what she did with it. Not a clue. It was probably in Publix to be honest. She probably went to get some groceries,” Poulter explained to the media.
“I’ve got a lovely picture of Jack [Nicklaus] and Arnie swapping some notes. So I took the two $100 bills, one from Jack, one from Arnie, and I wanted [to] put them in a frame. But it was shock horror when I actually did go in there to put it in the frame. You can imagine what I said, ‘Where has the [$100] bill gone?’ She says, ‘I don’t know. I must have spent it.’ I phoned up and I said, ‘I’m really sorry, but is there any chance I could pop in and get Arnie to sign another hundred,'” Poulter said.